- James II and VII (14 October 1633 – 16 September 1701 ) was King of England, King of Scots , and King of Ireland from 6 February 1685 to 11 December 1688 . He was the last Roman Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of Scotland , England , and Ireland. Many of his subjects distrusted his religious policies and autocratic tendencies, leading a group of them to depose him in the Glorious Revolution in 1688.
He was replaced not by his Roman Catholic son, James Francis Edward_Stuart, but by his Protestant daughter and son-in-law, Mary II and William III, who became joint rulers in 1689. James made one serious attempt to recover his crowns, when he landed in Ireland in 1689. After his defeat at the Battle of the Boyne in the summer of 1690, James returned to France , living out the rest of his life under the protection of his cousin and ally, King Louis XIV.
James is best known for his belief in absolute monarchy and his attempts to create religious liberty for his subjects. Both of these went against the wishes of the English Parliament and of most of his subjects. Parliament, opposed to the growth of absolutism that was occurring in other European countries, as well as to the loss of legal supremacy for the Church of England , saw their opposition as a way to preserve traditional English liberties. This tension made James's three-year reign a struggle for supremacy between the Parliament and the crown, resulting in his ouster, the passage of the English Bill of Rights, and the Hanoverian succession.