Do not hack me as you did my Lord Russell.
- The Duke of Monmouth
My fault was one which a prince might well have forgiven. I did but relieve a poor family and lo, I must die for it.
- Elisabeth Gaunt
Born in 1685: Died in 1685: Events of 1685:
  • John Wallis produces a rigorous mathematical solution of the famous Chinese Rings Puzzle.
  • Rene Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, lands at Matagorda Bay, Texas, and, thinking he has found the mouth of the Mississippi River, builds Fort St. Louis there.  Upon realizing his mistake, he leaves on an expedition to find it. La Salle will never return.
  • There are other claimants to the throne of England.  Charles converted to Catholicism on his deathbed, James is a much more fervent Catholic.  This makes Protestants in England and Scotland nervous.
    • Campbell, Earl of Argyll, sentenced to death in absentia by James (Duke of York at the time), convinces one of Charles's illegitimate sons, the (Protestant) Duke of Monmouth, to make a play for the throne.
    • Monmouth lands with 150 men at Lyme Regis, and gains much support in the West Country.
    • Campbell invades Scotland on Monmouth's behalf, but is captured and executed in Edinburgh.
    • Monmouth's untrained force is crushed by John Churchill, later Duke of Marlborough,  at the Battle of Sedgemoor.
    • A troop of cavalry led by a certain colonel Kirke ranges the West Country dragging in anyone suspected of paticipating. The ability to pay ransom was the determinant of guilt or innocence.
    • Later, James sends Lord Chief Justice George Jeffreys around the West Country to draw and quarter those who had ransomed themselves (later called "the bloody assizes").
    • Monmouth himself is beheaded at the Tower of London; the Royal Hangman Jack Ketch makes sure that it is a slow and painful death.
    • Elizabeth Gaunt is found to have hidden some of the rebels out of charity, and is burnt at the stake at Tyburn.
  • Louis XIV:
    • issues a Code Noir declaring that
      • all slaves in French possessions shall be Catholic
      • all overseers shall be Catholic
      • non-Catholics may not own slaves
      • slaves shall be given Holy Days off to worship.
      • children of slaves and their masters are to be freed.
      French colonists decide this proclamation infringes their property right too much and ignore it.
    • revokes the Edict of Nantes, forbidding the Huguenot religion and imposing harsh penalties on anyone practicing it.  Elector Frederick William of Brandenburg issues the Edict of Potsdam offering refuge to French Huguenots.
    • sends an ambassador to king Narai of Siam, with the idea of converting him to Christianity.
  • A challenge to his authority dispensed with, James begins replacing Protestant officials with Catholics.  He also begins having trouble with Parliament. Although divided into Tory and Whig parties who disagree on royal prerogative, James begins losing votes and is forced to prolong the session.  However, James grants the English East India Company permission to pursue their interests independently of local authorities.
  • The Ottoman Empire was badly defeated two years before, and The Western powers smell blood. Already, Venice and Austria have formed an unHoly Alliance with the object of rolling back Turkey-in-Europe:
    • Venice, under Francesco Morosini conquers the Peloponessus.
    • Louis XIV proposes a curious plan, assuming that Constantinople is soon to be captured,  dividing the Empire up between Venice, Poland, and France.  This cuts too many of the other Powers out of the pie and the plan is rejected.
  • Chinese Emperor Kangxi opens China's ports to Western trade.
  • Several Russians are taken prisoner in border skirmishes along the Amur River (Heilongjiang).  These prisoners, among them a Russian Orthodox priest, are taken to Beijing where they meet Emperor Kangxi.  Kangxi allows them to set up a Russian Orthodox church in a temple of Guandi, God of War.  This is now the site of the Russian Embassy in Beijing.

1684 - 1685 - 1686

How They Were Made - 17th Century

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