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A Short Narrative of the Life and Actions of His Grace John, D. of Marlborogh
written by "Backscheider, Paula R."
...hipwreck and in dealing with Scottish Protestants, Marlborough had joined the bloodless shift to William of Orange. For William, he led the English forces in Flanders in 1689 and in Ireland in 1690; in 1691 he was in charge of the British forces in Europe with the rank of lieutenant-general. In January, 1692, however, Marlborough was dismissed from all of his offices for a combination of reasons, each insufficient in itself but all too typical for him—open opposition to William's Dutch dominated army, rumors that he and Sarah, his ambitious and sometimes presumptuous wife, were plotting Anne's usurpation of the throne, and dissension aroused between Anne and her sister Queen Mary by the quixotic Sarah. When rumors of a Jacobite uprising began, Marlborough spent six weeks in the Tower. Although Marlborough was restored to political favor in 1698 partly as a placatory gesture to Anne, it was 1701 before he resumed his military career, this time as William's Commander-in-Chief and Ambassador Extraordinary to the United Provinces. In this second phase of his military career, he won every battle, took every fort that he besieged, held the Grand Alliance together, broke the threatening supremacy of France, and established England as a major power. Yet, during these ten years, Queen Anne's ministry and Parliament underwent several major upheavals: the resulting shifts in policy and personalities alternately inconvenienced and vexed Marlborough. The year 1711 marked the culmination of warring factions and clandestine arrangement, and Daniel Defoe's A Short Narrative of the Life and Actions of his grace, John, Duke of Marlborough, published 20 February 1711, originated in this battle. (For discussion of authorship, please see Appendix.) Much that happened in these years can be unraveled back to Harley, Earl of Oxford. His influences and circuitous dealing emerge wherever a close examination of politics is made.[1] Hiding his act...

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