|Duke of York and Albany|
The Duke of York, painted by Sir Thomas Lawrence, in the uniform of a Field-Marshal, with the mantle of the Order of the Garter, holding his Marshal's baton in his left hand.
|Born||16 August 1763|
St. James's Palace, London
|Died||5 January 1827 63) (aged|
Rutland House, London
|Burial||20 January 1827|
Princess Frederica Charlotte of Prussia
(m. 1791;died 1820)
|Mother||Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz|
|Years of service|
|Commands held||Commander-in-Chief of the Forces|
Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany(Frederick Augustus; 16 August 1763 – 5 January 1827) was the second son of George III, King of the United Kingdom and Hanover, and his consort Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. A soldier by profession, from 1764 to 1803 he was Prince-Bishop of Osnabrück in the Holy Roman Empire. From the death of his father in 1820 until his own death in 1827 he was the heir presumptive to his elder brother, George IV, in both the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and the Kingdom of Hanover.
Frederick was thrust into the British Army at a very early age and was appointed to high command at the age of thirty, when he was given command of a notoriously ineffectual campaign during the War of the First Coalition, a continental war following the French Revolution. Later, as Commander-in-Chief during the Napoleonic Wars, he oversaw the reorganisation of the British Army, establishing vital structural, administrative and recruiting reformsfor which he is credited with having done "more for the army than any one man has done for it in the whole of its history."
Prince Frederick Augustus, or the Duke of York as he became in later life, belonged to the House of Hanover.He was born on 16 August 1763, at St. James's Palace, London. His father was the reigning British monarch, King George III. His mother was Queen Charlotte (née Princess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz). He was christened on 14 September 1763 at St James's, by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Secker — his godparents were his great-uncle the Duke of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg (for whom the Earl Gower, Lord Chamberlain, stood proxy), his uncle the Duke of York (for whom the Earl of Huntingdon, Groom of the Stool, stood proxy) and his great-aunt the Princess Amelia.
On 27 February 1764, when Prince Frederick was six months old, he became Prince-Bishop of Osnabrück upon the death of Clemens August of Bavaria.The Peace of Westphalia stipulated that the city of Osnabrück would alternate between Catholic and Protestant rulers, with the Protestant bishops to be elected from the cadets of the House of Brunswick-Lüneburg. The bishopric of Osnabrück came with a substantial income, which he retained until the city was incorporated into Hanover in 1803 during the German mediatization. He was invested as Knight of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath on 30 December 1767 and as a Knight of the Order of the Garter on 19 June 1771.
George III decided that his second son would pursue an army career and had him gazetted colonel on 4 November 1780.From 1781 to 1787, Prince Frederick lived in Hanover, where he studied (along with his younger brothers, Prince Edward, Prince Ernest, Prince Augustus and Prince Adolphus) at the University of Göttingen. He was appointed colonel of the 2nd Horse Grenadier Guards (now 2nd Life Guards) on 26 March 1782 before being promoted to major-general on 20 November 1782. Promoted to lieutenant general on 27 October 1784, he was appointed colonel of the Coldstream Guards on 28 October 1784.
|House of Hanover|
He was created Duke of York and Albany and Earl of Ulster on 27 November 1784and became a member of the Privy Council. On his return to Great Britain, the Duke took his seat in the House of Lords, where, on 15 December 1788 during the Regency crisis, he opposed William Pitt's Regency Bill in a speech which was supposed to have been influenced by the Prince of Wales. On 26 May 1789 he took part in a duel with Colonel Charles Lennox, who had insulted him; Lennox missed, and Prince Frederick refused to return fire.
On 12 April 1793 Frederick was promoted to full general.That year, he was sent to Flanders in command of the British contingent of Coburg's army destined for the invasion of France. Frederick and his command fought in the Flanders Campaign under extremely trying conditions. He won several notable engagements, such as the Siege of Valenciennes in July 1793, but was defeated at the Battle of Hondschoote in September 1793. In the 1794 campaign he gained a notable success at the Battle of Beaumont in April and another at the Battle of Willems in May but was defeated at the Battle of Tourcoing later that month. The British army was evacuated through Bremen in April 1795.
After his return to Britain, his father George III promoted him to the rank of field marshal on 18 February 1795.On 3 April 1795, George appointed him effective Commander-in-Chief in succession to Lord Amherst although the title was not confirmed until three years later. He was also colonel of the 60th Regiment of Foot from 19 August 1797.
On appointment as Commander-in-Chief he immediately declared, reflecting on the Flanders Campaign of 1793–94, "that no officer should ever be subject to the same disadvantages under which he had laboured".
His second field command was with the army sent for the Anglo-Russian invasion of Holland in August 1799. On 7 September 1799, he was given the honorary title of Captain-General.Sir Ralph Abercromby and Admiral Sir Charles Mitchell, in charge of the vanguard, had succeeded in capturing some Dutch warships in Den Helder. However, following the Duke's arrival with the main body of the army, a number of disasters befell the allied forces, including shortage of supplies. On 17 October 1799, the Duke signed the Convention of Alkmaar, by which the allied expedition withdrew after giving up its prisoners. 1799 also saw Fort Frederick in South Africa named after him.
Frederick's military setbacks of 1799 were inevitable given his lack of moral seniority as a field commander, the poor state of the British army at the time, and conflicting military objectives of the protagonists. After this ineffectual campaign, Frederick was mocked, perhaps unfairly, in the rhyme "The Grand Old Duke of York":
Frederick's experience in the Dutch campaign made a strong impression on him. That campaign, and the Flanders campaign, had demonstrated the numerous weaknesses of the British army after years of neglect. Frederick as Commander-in-Chief of the British army carried through a massive programme of reform.He was the person most responsible for the reforms that created the force which served in the Peninsular War. He was also in charge of the preparations against Napoleon's planned invasion of the United Kingdom in 1803. In the opinion of Sir John Fortescue, Frederick did "more for the army than any one man has done for it in the whole of its history".
In 1801 Frederick actively supported the foundation of the Royal Military College, Sandhurst, which promoted the professional, merit-based training of future commissioned officers.
On 14 September 1805 he was given the honorary title of Warden of Windsor Forest.
Frederick resigned as Commander-in-Chief on 25 March 1809, as the result of a scandal caused by the activities of his latest mistress, Mary Anne Clarke.Clarke was accused of illicitly selling army commissions under Frederick's aegis. A select committee of the House of Commons enquired into the matter. Parliament eventually acquitted Frederick of receiving bribes by 278 votes to 196. He nevertheless resigned because of the high tally against him. Two years later, it was revealed that Clarke had received payment for furniture from Frederick's disgraced chief accuser, Gwyllym Wardle, and the Prince Regent reappointed the exonerated Frederick as Commander-in-Chief on 29 May 1811.
Frederick maintained a country residence at Oatlands near Weybridge, Surrey but he was seldom there, preferring to immerse himself in his administrative work at Horse Guards (the British army's headquarters) and, after hours, in London's high life, with its gaming tables: Frederick was perpetually in debt because of his excessive gambling on cards and racehorses.Following the unexpected death of his niece, Princess Charlotte of Wales, in 1817, Frederick became second in line to the throne, with a serious chance of inheriting it. In 1820, he became heir presumptive with the death of his father, George III.
Frederick died of dropsy and apparent cardio-vascular disease at the home of the Duke of Rutland on Arlington Street, London, in 1827.After lying in state in London, Frederick's remains were interred in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle.
Frederick married his cousin Princess Frederica Charlotte of Prussia, the daughter of King Frederick William II of Prussia and Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Lüneburg at Charlottenburg, Berlin on 29 September 1791 and again on 23 November 1791 at Buckingham Palace.The marriage was not a happy one and the couple soon separated. Frederica retired to Oatlands, where she lived until her death in 1820.
His full style, recited at his funeral, was "Most High, Most Mighty, and Illustrious Prince, Frederick Duke of York and of Albany, Earl of Ulster, Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, First and Principal Knight Grand Cross of the Most Honourable Military Order of the Bath, Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Hanoverian Guelphic Order".
His honours were as follows:
Fredericton, the capital of the Canadian province of New Brunswick, was named after Prince Frederick. The city was originally named "Frederick's Town".
Also in Canada, Duke of York Bay was named in his honour, since it was discovered on his birthday, 16 August.
In Western Australia, York County and the towns of York and Albany were named after Prince Frederick.Albany was originally named "Frederick Town".
The towering Duke of York Column on Waterloo Place, just off The Mall, London was completed in 1834 as a memorial to Prince Frederick.
The 72nd Regiment of Foot was given the title Duke of Albany's Own Highlanders in 1823 and, in 1881, became 1st Battalion Seaforth Highlanders (Ross-shire Buffs, The Duke of Albany's).
The first British fortification in southern Africa, Fort Frederick, Port Elizabeth, a city in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, was built in 1799 to prevent French assistance for rebellious Boers in the short-lived republic of Graaff-Reinet.
|Ancestors of Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany|
The Yorks had bought Oatlands on their marriage in 1791 with the impressive allowances of £18,000 from the Civil List, £7,000 from Ireland and a full £45,000 a year from the duke's holdings as Prince-Bishop of Osnabruck.
duke of york's bay.
Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany
Cadet branch of the House of WelfBorn: 16 August 1763 Died: 5 January 1827
Title last held byClemens August of Bavaria
| Prince-Bishop of Osnabrück |
as Protestant Administrator
Title next held byPaul Melchers
The Lord Amherst
| Captain and Colonel of the|
2nd Troop Horse Grenadier Guards
The Earl Waldegrave
| Colonel of the Coldstream Guards |
The Duke of Cambridge
The Lord Amherst
| Commander-in-Chief of the Forces |
Sir David Dundas
| Colonel-in-Chief of the|
60th (Royal American) Regiment of Foot
The Duke of Cambridge
Title last held byThe Duke of Cumberland
| Captain-General |
The Duke of Gloucester and Edinburgh
| Colonel of the 1st Regiment of Foot Guards |
The Duke of Wellington
Sir David Dundas
| Commander-in-Chief of the Forces |
Title last held byThe Duke of Montagu
| Great Master of the Bath |
The Duke of Clarence and St. Andrews
later became King William IV
The Prince of Wales
later became King George IV
| President of the Foundling Hospital |
The Duke of Cambridge
The House of Hanover, whose members are known as Hanoverians, is a German royal house that ruled Hanover, Great Britain, and Ireland at various times during the 17th through 20th centuries. The house originated in 1635 as a cadet branch of the House of Brunswick-Lüneburg, growing in prestige until Hanover became an Electorate in 1692. George I became the first Hanoverian monarch of Great Britain and Ireland in 1714. At Victoria's death in 1901, the throne of the United Kingdom passed to her eldest son Edward VII, a member of the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. The last reigning members of the House lost the Duchy of Brunswick in 1918 when Germany became a republic.
Field Marshal FitzRoy James Henry Somerset, 1st Baron Raglan,, known before 1852 as Lord FitzRoy Somerset, was a British Army officer. When a junior officer, he served in the Peninsular War and the Hundred Days, latterly as military secretary to the Duke of Wellington. He also took part in politics as Tory Member of Parliament for Truro, before becoming Master-General of the Ordnance. He became commander of the British troops sent to the Crimea in 1854: his primary objective was to defend Constantinople, and he was also ordered to besiege the Russian Port of Sevastopol. After an early success at the Battle of Alma, a failure to deliver orders with sufficient clarity caused the fateful Charge of the Light Brigade at the Battle of Balaclava. Despite further success at the Battle of Inkerman, a poorly coordinated allied assault on Sevastopol in June 1855 was a complete failure. Raglan died later that month, after suffering from dysentery and depression.
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, was the fourth son and fifth child of King George III. His only child became Queen Victoria.
Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, was the eighth child and youngest son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Leopold was later created Duke of Albany, Earl of Clarence, and Baron Arklow. He had haemophilia, which led to his death at the age of 30.
Prince Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge, was the tenth child and seventh son of the British king George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. He held the title of Duke of Cambridge from 1801 until his death. He also served as Viceroy of Hanover on behalf of his brothers George IV and William IV.
Prince George, Duke of Cambridge, was a member of the British Royal Family, a male-line grandson of King George III, cousin of Queen Victoria, and maternal uncle of Queen Mary, consort of King George V. The Duke was an army officer by profession and served as Commander-in-Chief of the Forces from 1856 to 1895. He became Duke of Cambridge in 1850 and field marshal in 1862. Deeply devoted to the old Army, he worked with Queen Victoria to defeat or minimise every reform proposal, such as setting up a general staff. His Army became a moribund and stagnant institution, lagging far behind the French Army and the German Army. Its weaknesses were dramatically revealed by the poor organisation at the start of the Second Boer War.
George V was the last King of Hanover, the only child and successor of King Ernest Augustus. George V's reign ended during the unification of Germany.
Ernest Augustus, Crown Prince of Hanover, 3rd Duke of Cumberland and Teviotdale, was the eldest child and only son of George V of Hanover and his wife, Marie of Saxe-Altenburg. Ernst August was deprived of the thrones of Hanover upon its annexation by Prussia in 1866 and later the Duchy of Brunswick in 1884. Although he was the senior male-line great-grandson of George III, the Duke of Cumberland was deprived of his British peerages and honours for having sided with Germany in World War I. Ernst August was the last Hanoverian prince to hold a British royal title and the Order of the Garter. His descendants are in the line of succession to the British throne.
Field Marshal John Colborne, 1st Baron Seaton, was a British Army officer and colonial governor. After taking part as a junior officer in the Anglo-Russian invasion of Holland, Sir Ralph Abercromby's expedition to Egypt and then the War of the Third Coalition, he served as military secretary to Sir John Moore at the Battle of Corunna. He then commanded the 2nd Battalion of the 66th Regiment of Foot and, later, the 52nd Regiment of Foot at many of the battles of the Peninsular War. At the Battle of Waterloo, Colborne on his own initiative brought the 52nd Regiment of Foot forward, took up a flanking position in relation to the French Imperial Guard and then, after firing repeated volleys into their flank, charged at the Guard so driving them back in disorder.
Field Marshal Sir George Nugent, 1st Baronet, GCB was a British Army officer. After serving as a junior officer in the American Revolutionary War, he fought with the Coldstream Guards under the Duke of York during the Flanders Campaign. He then commanded the Buckinghamshire Volunteers in the actions of St. Andria and Thuyl on the river Waal and participated in the disastrous retreat from the Rhine. He went on to be commander of the northern district of Ireland, in which post he played an important part in placating the people of Belfast during the Irish Rebellion, and then became Adjutant-General in Ireland. He went on to be Governor of Jamaica, commander of the Western District in England, commander of the Kent District in England and finally Commander-in-Chief, India.
Field Marshal Stapleton Cotton, 1st Viscount Combermere, was a British Army officer, diplomat and politician. As a junior officer he took part in the Flanders Campaign, in the Fourth Anglo-Mysore War and in the suppression of Robert Emmet's insurrection in 1803. He commanded a cavalry brigade in Sir Arthur Wellesley's Army before being given overall command of the cavalry in the latter stages of the Peninsular War. He went on to be Commander-in-Chief, Ireland and then Commander-in-Chief, India. In the latter role he stormed Bharatpur—a fort which previously had been deemed impregnable.
John Fane, 11th Earl of Westmorland, styled Lord Burghersh until 1841, was a British soldier, politician, diplomat and musician.
Ernest Augustus, Duke of York and Albany, was the younger brother of George I of Great Britain. Ernest Augustus was a soldier and served with some distinction under Emperor Leopold I during the Nine Years' War and the War of the Spanish Succession. In 1715, he became Prince-Bishop of Osnabrück.
Field Marshal Sir William Maynard Gomm was a British Army officer. After taking part in the Anglo-Russian invasion of Holland, he served in most of the battles of the Napoleonic Wars. During the Hundred Days he took part in both the Battle of Quatre Bras and the Battle of Waterloo. He went on to be Commander of the troops in Jamaica and in that role established new barracks at Newcastle, Jamaica, high in the mountains. After that he became Governor of Mauritius and, finally, Commander-in-Chief, India, in which role he introduced promotion examinations for officers.
Field Marshal John Byng, 1st Earl of Strafford, of 6 Portman Square, London, of Ballaghy, Londonderry and latterly of Wrotham Park in Middlesex, and of 5, St James's Square, London, was a British Army officer and politician. After serving as a junior officer during the French Revolutionary Wars and Irish Rebellion of 1798, he became Commanding Officer of the Grenadier Battalion of the 3rd Regiment of Foot Guards during the disastrous Walcheren Campaign. He served as a brigade commander at the Battle of Vitoria and then at the Battle of Roncesvalles on 25 July 1813 when his brigade took the brunt of the French assault and held its position for three hours in the early morning before finally being forced back. During the Hundred Days he commanded the 2nd Guards Brigade at the Battle of Quatre Bras in June 1815 and again at the Battle of Waterloo later that month when light companies from his brigade played an important role in the defence of Château d'Hougoumont. He went on to be Commander-in-Chief, Ireland and, after leaving Ireland in 1831, he was elected as Whig Member of Parliament for Poole in Dorset and was one of the few military men who supported the Reform Bill, for which he was rewarded with a peerage.
Field Marshal Sir Edward Blakeney was a British Army officer. After serving as a junior officer with the expedition to Dutch Guiana and being taken prisoner by privateers three times suffering great hardship, he took part in the Anglo-Russian invasion of Holland in 1799. He also joined the expedition to Denmark led by Lord Cathcart in 1807. He went on to command the 2nd Battalion of the 7th Regiment of Foot and then both battalions of that regiment at many of the battles of the Peninsular War. After joining the Duke of Wellington as he marched into Paris in 1815, Blakeney fought in the War of 1812. He then commanded a brigade in the army sent on a mission to Portugal to support the constitutional government against the absolutist forces of Dom Miguel in 1826. His last major appointment was as Commander-in-Chief, Ireland, a post he held for nearly twenty years.
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington was an Anglo-Irish soldier and statesman and one of the leading military and political figures of the 19th century. His military career culminated at the Battle of Waterloo, where, along with Blücher, he defeated the forces of Napoleon Bonaparte. He was also twice Tory Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. During his life, Wellington received numerous honours, titles and awards throughout his career as a statesman and soldier. These include awards, statues and monuments, as well as buildings and places named after him.
Field Marshal Sir Alexander George Woodford, GCB, KCMG, was a British Army officer. After taking part in the Anglo-Russian invasion of Holland, he served in most of the battles of the Napoleonic Wars. During the Hundred Days he commanded the 2nd battalion of the Coldstream Guards at the Battle of Quatre Bras, the Battle of Waterloo and the storming of Cambrai. He went on to become lieutenant governor and brigade commander at Malta, lieutenant governor and brigade commander at Corfu and then commander of the British garrison on the Ionian Islands before being appointed Governor and Commander-in-Chief of Gibraltar.
Lieutenant-General Sir James Frederick Lyon was an distinguished officer of the British Army who served as Governor of Barbados from 1829 to 1833.
Field Marshal Sir Charles Yorke GCB was a senior British Army officer. He fought in many of the battles of the Peninsular War and of the Hundred Days, seeing action as an extra aide-de-camp to Major-General Frederick Adam, commander of the 3rd Light Brigade, at the Battle of Waterloo. After that he became Deputy Commander of the British forces in South Africa during the latter stages of the Eighth Xhosa War. He went on to be Military Secretary, ultimately earning promotion to field marshal for his competence in that role.