Skip to comments.King George III speaks to Parliament of American rebellion, 1775
Posted on 10/27/2018 3:20:46 AM PDT by gattaca
On this day in 1775, King George III speaks before both houses of the British Parliament to discuss growing concern about the rebellion in America, which he viewed as a traitorous action against himself and Great Britain. He began his speech by reading a Proclamation of Rebellion and urged Parliament to move quickly to end the revolt and bring order to the colonies.
The king spoke of his belief that many of these unhappy people may still retain their loyalty, and may be too wise not to see the fatal consequence of this usurpation, and wish to resist it, yet the torrent of violence has been strong enough to compel their acquiescence, till a sufficient force shall appear to support them. With these words, the king gave Parliament his consent to dispatch troops to use against his own subjects, a notion that his colonists believed impossible.
Just as the Continental Congress expressed its desire to remain loyal to the British crown in the Olive Branch Petition, delivered to the monarch on September 1, so George III insisted he had acted with the same temper; anxious to prevent, if it had been possible, the effusion of the blood of my subjects; and the calamities which are inseparable from a state of war; still hoping that my people in America would have discerned the traitorous views of their leaders, and have been convinced, that to be a subject of Great Britain, with all its consequences, is to be the freest member of any civil society in the known world. King George went on to scoff at what he called the colonists strongest protestations of loyalty to me, believing them disingenuous, whilst they were preparing for a general revolt.
Unfortunately for George III, Thomas Paines anti-monarchical argument in the pamphlet, Common Sense, published in January 1776, proved persuasive to many American colonists. The two sides had reached a final political impasse and the bloody War for Independence soon followed.
So Lexington, Concord, etc. (April 1775) weren’t the real beginning?
“Common Sense” influences more people to support breaking away from England.
Lexington/concord sparked the beginning of outright war (gun controllers take note).
KG3’s speech just upped the rhetoric.
I guess it depends on what side you are on.
Likewise, the surrender of Cornwallis in October 1781 didn't mark the end of the war. There were still British troops in the colonies and the last of them didn't leave until the evacuation of New York November 1783.
By 1778 the "American Revolution" had been subsumed in the general conflict between Britain and France which didn't end until after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, over 40 years later. The British evacuation of New York didn't mark the end of the global war between Britain and France anymore that the US evacuation of Saigon in 1975 marked marked the end of the cold war.
So, George, you want to seize our guns and ammunition? OK, we’ll give you the ammunition first!
My Irish ancestors were driven out of Europe by starvation deliberately caused by successors of George III.
I mourn the suffering they endured so that their succeeding generations could live in freedom and prosperity.
We meant well to the Americans - just to punish them with a few bloody noses and then make laws for the happiness of both countries was George IIIs view it, and the title of an excellent, if somewhat flawed, book on the Revolution, by Robert Harvey. It gives a British apology for the events leading up to the Revolution and during the war, and the way the campaign was conducted. We do not often hear these arguments on this side of the Atlantic.
Good thread. Love this stuff. Thx.
Too bad King George did not listen to Edmund Burke. He gave a speech on reconciliation with the then colonies in March 1775. He noted what the Americans demanded was consistent with their rights as Englishmen.
Concord and Lexington showed it was not going to be easy.
Burke and William Pitt the elder tried to talk sense into the German King and Parliament from the get-go. Too bad they didn’t listen.
I’m mostly British Isles, including Welsh. They weren’t too keen on the Brits either.
In my view, Lexington/Concord was the point of no return (in spite of the Olive Branch Petition). His Majesty’s troops’ blood had been shed at the hands of his Majesty’s subjects in his Majesty’s colonya colony already under punishment for the Boston Tea Party. From the King’s point of view, this was intolerable and there had to be a strong response.
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