Letter of King James II to the Earl of Feversham, December 11, 1688

King James II and VII sent this letter to the commander-in-chief of his forces, Louis de Duras, 2nd Earl of Feversham. It was published as a broadside together with the Earl of Feversham's letter to the Prince of Orange under the title The King's letter to the general of his army with the general's letter to the Prince of Orange (Wing J205).

Whitehall, December 11, 1688

Things being come to that extremity that I have been forced to send away the Queen and my son the Prince of Wales, that they might not fall into my enemies' hands (which they must have done had they stayed), I am obliged to do the same thing, and to endeavour to secure myself the best I can, in hopes that it will please God, out of his infinite mercy to this unhappy passion, to touch their hearts again with true loyalty and honour. If I could have relied on all my troops I might not have been put to this extremity I am in, and would, at least, have had one blow for it. But though I know there are amongst you very many loyal and brave men, both officers and soldiers, yet you know that both yourself and several of the general officers of the Army told me it was no ways advisable for me to venture myself at their head or to think to fight the Prince of Orange with them. And there remains only for me to thank you and all those, both officers and soldiers, who have stuck to me and been truly loyal, and hope you will still retain the same fidelity to me. And though I do not expect you should expose yourselves by resisting a foreign army and a poisoned nation, yet I hope your former principles are so rooted in you, that you will keep yourselves free from associations and such pernicious things. Time presses me so that I can say no more.


I must add this, that as I have always found you loyal, so you have found me a kind master as you shall still find me.


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