July 15, 1685 – Execution of James Scott, 1st Duke of Monmouth, 1st Duke of Buccleuch, an illegitimate son of King Charles II Of England, for treason at Tower Hill; buried at the Chapel Royal of St. Peter ad Vincula, Tower of London
Originally called James Crofts or James Fitzroy, he was born in Rotterdam in the Netherlands, the eldest illegitimate son of Charles II of England, Scotland and Ireland and his mistress Lucy Walter.
In 1685 he led the unsuccessful Monmouth Rebellion, an attempt to depose his uncle, King James II and VII. After one of his officers declared Monmouth the legitimate King in the town of Taunton in Somerset, Monmouth attempted to capitalise on his position as the son of Charles II, and his Protestantism, in opposition to James, who was a Roman Catholic. The rebellion failed, and Monmouth was beheaded for treason on 15 July 1685.
One of the many theories about the identity of The Man in the Iron Mask is that he was Monmouth: this seems to be based on the unlikely reasoning that James II would not execute his own nephew, so someone else was executed, and James II arranged for Monmouth to be taken to France and put in the custody of his cousin Louis XIV of France.
His marriage to Anne Scott, 1st Duchess of Buccleuch resulted in the birth of six children. His descendants includes Sarah, Duchess of York, Princess Alice of Gloucester and Diana, Princess of Wales.
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