Biography of Queen of Inglaterra María II (1662-1695)

Queen of England since April 11, 1689 until the date of his death. Born in London on 30 April 1662, and died at Kensington Palace from January 7, 1695. At all times, it complied with the political decisions taken by her husband, the English monarch Guillermo III Orange.

Daughter eldest daughter of King James II, in those years Duke of York, and Ana Hyde, despite the fact that his parents had embraced the Catholic faith, María was educated at the express wish of his uncle, King Carlos II, following the precepts that marked the Anglican Church, which made him a fervent advocate of this religion since his youth. The Princess received education careful along with his sister Anna in the English Court, being their preceptors some leading intellectuals of the time, as it is the case of Henry Compton.

Very soon the negotiations to carry out the marriage of María became an integral part of the foreign policy of Carlos II, so it is not surprising this enter into marriage when he/she was 15 years old, in November 1677, with his cousin Guillermo de Orange, which in those years occupied the post of Governor of Holland and it was considered in Europe as one of the main defenders of Protestantism. The life of María changed profoundly with their marriage, since after held the ceremony left their homeland to settle in Holland, where he/she showed great interest in domestic affairs and showed signs of being possessed of a remarkable good taste, for what he/she spent much of her time to interior decoration and especially the design of gardens. But while it seemed happy to dealing with the above-mentioned activities, the married life of the young Princess was very unfortunate, since the infidelities of her husband, which showed feel a lack of interest from the very beginning by María were frequent. Thus the extramarital affairs that kept the Dutch statuder were increased when it was demonstrated that the couple was unable to have children, which twitched more even the souls of the Princess, despite the constant humiliations he/she decided to unconditionally support the political decisions taken by her husband.

The death of Carlos II, and the rise to power of Jacobo II in the year 1685 was a before and an after in the relations between England and the Netherlands. Thus not have liked Guillermo attempts of his father-in-law to restore Catholicism in England and the situation worsened significantly in the year 1688, when it feared for the rights of his wife to the English throne, since the birth of James, son of the monarch and his second wife, María de Modena, brought down to María succession due to his condition of womanthat despite that was the eldest daughter of Jacobo II and his brother had received the title of Princess of Wales, legally since the advent to the throne of this was already who received all rights.

These events spurred Guillermo to stand up against the English monarch and to organize a large opposition movement, negotiating with important English nobles, so not to succeed in a Catholic dynasty take hold in England. María strongly supported the decision of her husband and participated actively in the preparations for the landing in England. So it arrived in his native country in November 1688 and in February of the following year was in London, where following the dictates of her husband got Parliament to repeal laws that prevented this receive the Crown.

Finally on April 11, 1689 María II got its purpose and was crowned together with Guillermo III, officially as Queen of England, but while he/she could have exercised power alone, he/she resigned to take charge of the Affairs of State and dedicated themselves to carry out important charitable works, as it is the case of the Foundation of a hospital for disabled sailors from Greenwich. But this abandon their responsibilities in the political area, did not mean that it desentendiera of Ecclesiastical Affairs, for this reason María II decided to take on the obligations imposed him as head of the Anglican Church.

During the years following María II was an important collaborator of Guillermo III, so when it left England for long periods of time, either to take charge of the Government of the Netherlands and to deal with the campaigns of conquest that began in Ireland, became regent obeying orders that her husband sent her from outside to perfection. So although it was not very comfortable exercising their new responsibilities, seasons in which no should take care of the Regency, María undertook significant reforms in the Royal residences, especially in Kensington Palace, the exterior designing gardens, both inside dealing with decoration.

Considered by his contemporaries as a beautiful woman with a natural elegance, his premature death, when he/she was 32 years old, on January 7, 1895, he/she shocked the Court. The best doctors from England, could do nothing for the life of the young Queen so it died of smallpox, disease he/she contracted a few months before his death.


VICENS VIVES, J. modern general history. 15th - 18th. (Barcelona, Vicens Vives, 1997).