The political debate over war strategy, 1689-1712.
Denman, Terence John
University of Cambridge
Faculty of History
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
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Denman, T. J. (1985). The political debate over war strategy, 1689-1712. (Doctoral thesis). https://doi.org/10.17863/CAM.11484
The dissertation covers 1689-1712 in English political history. It deals with the debate between the Whig and Tory parties, and their internal conflicts, over the strategy necessary to defeat France in the two wars of this period: the Nine Years' and Spanish Succession Wars. It describes the widespread hopes for a quick victory, centred on the 'descent', in the early years of William's reign; and how this optimism was exploited to secure support for the Continental .war. It traces the development of an alternative 'Country' strategy in response to the failures to mount an invasion of France and the build up of English forces in Flanders. The consolidation of Whig support behind the Contin~ntal war in 1693-95; and the failure of the Country attempt to draw away mercantile support from the European war by exploiting the anger over privateering losses are analysed. The explosion of Country/Tory bitterness in 1697-98 which ied to the precipitate disbanding of the army is discussed with reference to the strategic hopes and dis- , appointments of :the previous war. The approach of the Spanish Succession War in 1698-1702 is analysed against the background of the expectations of both Whigs and Tories that England would now fight as naval auxiliaries; and attenti-on is drawn to the wide-spread interest in Caribbean warfare. The internal disputes within the Tory ministry in 1702-04 over war strategy are analysed, and the strategic ideas of the main political figures - Nottingham, Godolphin, Marlborough and Harley - are examined. The importance of the Spanish theatre to public and political opinion and the revival of interest in Caribbean warfare from 1706 on are both documented. Harley's changing attitude to the war in the years 1704-08 is discussed. The rise to dominance , of the Junto war strategy 1708-10 is cpnsidered, and the Tory response. The war strategy of the Tory ministry of 1710 is examined, with particular reference to the hold of the Spanish war on Tory loyalties, and Harley's West Indian and St John's Canadian schemes. The fierce pamphlet debate between Whig and Tory in 1710-12 over the conduct of the Succession War is analysed.
Digitisation of this thesis was sponsored by Arcadia Fund, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin.
This record's DOI: https://doi.org/10.17863/CAM.11484