The Union of 1707 is too often thought of in narrowly British terms, even — quite understandably in Scotland — in almost exclusively Scottish terms. In fact, however, there was an important European dimension to this major reconfiguration of the political structure of Britain. This chapter examines the Union in the context of the War of the Spanish Succession (1701–1713/14), which pitted Philip V of Spain and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI. British contemporaries were well aware of the larger context of the war: for one English politician, the successful conclusion of the Union negotiations in 1706 ranked with the allied victories outside Turin in Italy, and at Ramillies in Flanders, as among the great allied successes of that year. This chapter shows that the War of the Spanish Succession played a crucial part in determining the timing, the mode and aspects of the implementation of the Union, as well as defining some of the benefits it brought to the Scots.
Keywords: Union; Scotland; Britain; War of the Spanish Succession; Philip V; Spain; Charles VI
Chapter. 7582 words.
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