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Portrait of a Jacobite Lady by Cosmo Alexander, c. 1745.

Jacobitism refers to a monarchist political movement in England, Scotland and Ireland which is loyal to the legitimist line of succession to the thrones of those countries and advocates their restoration. The movement has predessors in the Cavaliers of the Wars of the Three Kingdoms who remained loyal to the Stuart monarchy and the old Tories who supported the rights of the Duke of York; later known as James II; to succeed his brother Charles II, despite being a Catholic convert. It is from James II that the movement takes its name as Jacobus is the Latin form of James. Their emblem is the White Rose of York. White Rose Day is celebrated on 10 June, the anniversary of the birth of the Old Pretender in 1688.

Jacobitism was a response to the deposition of James II and VII in 1688 when he was replaced by his daughter Mary II jointly with her husband and first cousin William of Orange. The Stuarts lived on the European mainland after that, occasionally attempting to regain the throne with the aid of France or Spain. The primary seats of Jacobitism were Ireland and Scotland, particularly the Scottish Highlands. In England, Jacobitism was strongest in the north, and some support also existed in Wales.

Many embraced Jacobitism because they believed parliamentary interference with monarchical succession to be illegitimate, and many Catholics hoped the Stuarts would end discriminatory laws. Still other people of various allegiances became involved in the military campaigns for all sorts of motives. In Scotland the Jacobite cause became entangled in the last throes of the warrior Gaelic Highland clan system, but its cultural depiction was later usurped by Lowland Scots romantics such as Walter Scott and Robbie Burns, who turned its memory into a dubious non-traditionalist ideology.

See also

Part of this article consists of modified text from Metapedia, page http:en.metapedia.org/wiki/Jacobitism and/or Wikipedia, page http:en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacobitism, and the article is therefore licensed under GFDL.