Queen Anne

Lived: 1665-1714
Reigned 1702-1714

Queen Anne

Born: 6 February 1665
Place: St James's Palace
Reigned: 1702-1714
Coronation: 23 April 1702
Father: James II (1633-1701)
Mother: Anne Hyde (1637-1671)
Spouse: George of Denmark (1653-1708)
Mary (1685-1687)
Anne (1686-1687)
William (1689-1700)
Mary (1690)
George (1692)
Charles (1698)
12 more pregnancies Religion: Protestant
Died: 1 August 1714
Place: Kensington Palace
Buried: Westminster Abbey
Successor: George I

Anne Stuart became queen following the death of her brother-in-law William III in 1702. She was the younger sister of Mary II and the second of James II's daughters to become queen. Like her sister, Anne was raised a Protestant and supported the deposition of her father. For this her father disowned her. Anne later fell out with her sister as she felt that William had taken her place in the line of succession. The two sisters were never reconciled as Mary died of small pox in 1694.

As a child, Anne suffered from an eye condition and all her adult life was plagued by ill health. When she was crowned queen in 1702 she had to be carried into Westminster Abbey in a chair. In 1683 she had married George Oldenburg, Prince of Denmark, and while the marriage was not always easy, Anne was devoted to her husband. Despite having been pregnant an estimated 18 times, only one of Anne's children survived infancy, Prince William, Duke of Gloucester. Sadly, however, eleven year old William died in 1700 from an illness. When Anne became queen in 1702, she therefore had no heir.

In 1707 England (&Wales) and Scotland were united to form one nation called Great Britain in an Act of Union. Anne was thus the first monarch to rule Great Britain.

For most of Queen Anne's reign, Britain was embroiled in a war with France known as The War of Spanish Succession (1701-1713). This war erupted when King Charles II of Spain died without an heir and the crown was passed to the King of France's grandson, Philip. Britain, and several other European powers, were afraid this would unite France and Spain and make them too powerful. They wanted Archduke Charles of Austria to be King of Spain instead. The war lasted over a decade and was fought all over Europe. The British won significant victories at the Battles of Blenheim (1704), Ramillies (1706), Oudenarde (1708) and Malplaquet (1709). The conflict also infected the American colonies in what became known as Queen Anne's War (1702-13). Here the British fought French, Spanish and some Native American tribes over territories.The Treaty of Utrecht (1713) helped to bring an end to The War of Spanish Succession. Philip was allowed to remain King of Spain so long as France and Spain did not unite.

Like all monarchs, Anne had her favourites, but in her case her favourites were women. For many years she was close friends with Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, (1660-1744) but after a quarrel the duchess was supplanted in the queen's affections by Baroness Abigail Masham (c.1670-1734).

Anne was a popular queen, and always took a keen interest in matters of state, but was easily influenced by others. The Queen was very fond of liquor, which earned her the nickname 'Brandy Nan'. Anne was the last monarch to touch for Scrofula and the last monarch to veto a Bill of Parliament (1708). She was also the last Stuart monarch. When Anne died heirless in 1714, the crown passed to George Louis Hanover (1660-1627), a Protestant descendant of King James I, and the rule of the Hanovers (1714-1901) began.