George IV King of England
- Category : Notable-Famous-Royal-family
- Type : PSP
- Profile : 2/4 - Hermit / Opportunist
- Definition : Single
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Explanation 3
British royalty, the son of George III and Queen Charlotte, King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and King of Hanover.
He was a precocious, attractive, strong willed youth, so complex that his tutor predicted that he would become the most polished gentleman or the biggest blackguard in England, or perhaps both. He was adored by his sisters and the bane of his father, exasperating the politicians. He was loved by many women, a sensualist and a highly gifted dilettante.
George lacked ambition and had a sordid private life. Unpopular, he was known for his overindulgences with mistresses, food, brandy and opium. Unable to handle money, by 1795 his debts amounted to 750,000 pounds (by today's standards, about $300 million). He agreed to make a proper and approved marriage to Princess Caroline of Brunswick, his first cousin, and the wedding took place three days after she arrived from Germany, on 4/08/1795. Their one daughter, Princess Charlotte Augusta, was born in January 1796, nine months after the wedding, after which they separated in bitter enmity.
His days were filled with gambling and the high life, building up debts and notoriety and he fell passionately in love with an actress at 17. When he was 23, he made a secret marriage to Mrs. Fitzherbert, on 12/15/1785, an inappropriate union that his dad had annulled. Later, his affair with Beau Brummel caused another great scandal.
George was nonetheless a man of taste who, during his reign, commissioned some of England's most beautiful buildings such as the Brighton Pavilion, Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace, commissioning the work at a time when the people were suffering from poverty, a further cause to bring loathing from the masses.
In October 1810 King George III went hopelessly insane and the Prince was formally announced as regent on 2/05/1911 . After nine years, he succeeded his father upon King George III's death on 1/29/1820. He was crowned at Westminster on 7/19/1821.
As king, George IV promised Caroline a generous stipend if she never returned from Italy, where she was living. Caroline was determined to claim her title as queen and returned to England, where she was welcomed by cheering crowds. Her husband promptly asked Parliament to impeach her for "licentious, disgraceful, and adulterous intercourse," and to dissolve their marriage and deprive her of her title.
The proceedings began in the House of Lords on 8/17/1820 with testimony from an endless trail of bodyguards, chambermaids and traveling companions. From August to November the trial of Queen Caroline was a media circus. A slim majority of the Lords voted for the bill to impeach the Queen, but it was shelved in November 1820 because of angry demonstrations in the streets. The people objected to the indignity of having the Queen's private life denigrated, rebelling against the over handed persecution of the King.
Even though she received the support of the people, Caroline was forcibly denied admittance to the coronation on 7/19/1821. Mortified and rejected from her royal position, she died 8/07/1821, London, England.
Totally out of touch with his times, during his ten-year reign George opposed most reforms in the government. The political consciousness which blossomed during the 1820s made for ultimate change in spite of the king who continually thwarted his own prime minister. In 1827 he was compelled to acquiesce to the Whigs coming to power. Social reform came in spite of the king and he became despised by both parties, the Tories and the Whigs.
Probably England's least popular and most ineffectual king, George IV died of a heart attack in his sleep 6/26/1830, Sandringham, England. His only legal child, Charlotte Augusta, had died in childbirth in 1817 along with her baby so George was succeeded by his brother, William IV.