The Mad King

King George III, King of Great Britain and Hanover, was born in 1738. Since his father was deceased, was heir to the British throne when his grandfather died in 1760. He was the first of the Hanover kings to be born in England and to speak English as his first language. He lived the longest (81) and reigned the longest of any British monarch until Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth II.

In 1761 George married Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.  Two weeks later they were crowned king and queen of England at Westminster. Although they met on their wedding day, they were happily married. George never took a mistress, unlike the rest of his family. They had fifteen children. George bought Buckingham House for his family’s retreat.

His reign was marked by strife and war – the Seven Years’  War, the American Revolution, and the French Revolution followed by war with Napoleon. His personal life was a concern to the nation. There were various conflicts with his children, often involving profligate life styles. He was afflicted with recurrent mental health problems which developed into permanent dementia by 1810.  His eldest son, George, Prince of Wales, served as Prince Regent until his father’s death in 1819.

Tomorrow, Prinny.  Rita Bay

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