King George IV of Great Britain and Ireland 1762 – 1830

 

King George IV

Father – King George III
Mother – Chalotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
Spouse – Caroline of Brunswick
Children – Charlotte

King of Great Britain 1820 – 1830
Predecessor – George III
Successor – William IV

 

1762 (12th August)
George IV was born George Augustus Frederick to King George III of Great Britain and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at St James’s Palace, London. He was styled Duke of Cornwall and Duke of Rothesay.
1762 (17th August)
George, was created Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester.
1762 (18th September)
George, was christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
1763 (16th August)
George’s brother, Frederick Augustus, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at St James’s Palace, London.
1765 (during)
King George III had a temporary episode of mental instability.
1765 (21st August)
George’s brother, William Henry, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1766 (around)
George began his education. In addition to scholarly subjects he was taught French, German and Italian.
1766 (29th September)
George’s sister, Charlotte Augusta Matilda was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1767 (2nd November)
George’s brother, Edward Augustus, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1768 (8th November)
George’s sister, Augusta Sophia, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1769 (22nd May)
George’s sister, Elizabeth, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1771 (5th June)
George’s brother, Ernest Augustus, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1772 (1st April)
Royal Marriages Act
This act made it illegal for members of the royal family to marry without the permission of the sovereign.
1773 (27th January)
George’s brother, Augustus Frederick, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1774 (24th February)
George’s brother, Adolphus Frederick, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham Palace, London.
1775 (19th April)
American War of Independence/ American Revolutionary War
War began between Britain and American colonists after the colonists fought British troops at the battles of Lexington and Concord.
1776 (25th April)
George’s sister, Mary, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1777 (3rd November)
George’s sister, Sophia Matilda, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1778 (during)
King George suffered a period of mental instability where he became violent and had to be restrained in a straitjacket.
1779 (during)
King George’s mental health recovered and he was able to resume royal duties.
1779 (during)
George began a relationship with the actress Mary Robinson.
1779 (23rd February)
George’s brother, Octavius, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1780 (Autumn)
George was given his own establishment. He celebrated his freedom by drinking, partying and taking mistresses.
1780 (22nd September)
George’s brother, Alfred, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at Buckingham House, London.
1781 (during)
George ended his relationship with the actress Mary Robinson.
1781 (19th October)
American War of Independence – Battle of Yorktown
The British were decisively defeated by the Americans and French in this final battle of the war.
1782 (during)
George had a brief relationship with divorcee Grace Elliott.
1782 (Spring)
King George III was devastated by the loss of the American colonies and considered abdicating the throne.
1782 (20th August)
George’s brother, Alfred, died at Windsor Castle, London.
1783 (3rd May)
George’s brother, Octavius, died at Kew Palace, Surrey.
1783 (7th August)
George’s sister, Amelia, was born to George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz at The Lodge, Windsor Castle.
1783 (12th August)
George reached the age of 21 and was granted an allowance from the Civil List and another allowance from his father. He moved to Carlton House where he continued to enjoy a decadent life.
1783 (3rd September)
Treaty of Paris
By this treaty, Britain acknowledged the independence of the thirteen colonies of America as the United States. Florida was returned to Spain.
1783 (Autumn)
George began a relationship with Maria FitzHerbert, a twice-widowed Roman Catholic commoner.
1785 (15th September)
George married Maria Anne FitzHerbert despite the fact that the ceremony was in contravention to the Royal Marriages Act of 1772, as he did not have his father’s permission to marry, and in contravention to the Test Act which forbade the marriage to Roman Catholics. The marriage was therefore deemed to be invalid but George continued the relationship although it was kept secret.
1787 (during)
Work began on a new building, the Royal Pavilion, in Brighton. Designed by George’s friend John Nash the building, resembling an Indian Palace, served as a seaside retreat for the Prince.
1787 (during)
Amid rumours of George’s relationship with Maria FitzHerbert, Whig opposition leader Charles Fox publicly denied the liaison.
1787 (during)
George was awarded a grant of money from Parliament to clear his substantial debts and also to rennovate Carlton House.
1788 (Summer)
King George III suffered a bout of insanity which was so bad his behaviour scared the Queen.
1788 (25th September)
Parliament was adjourned due to the King’s deteriorating state of mind.
1788 (November)
George III’s condition worsened and he was reported as speaking and writing incessantly. There was conflict between George and his mother over the illness of King George. George’s mother believed that he wanted his father certified insane so that he could take over as Regent, George suspected that Charlotte wanted him declared sane so that she could maintain power. 
1788 (20th November)
Parliament reconvened but was unable to function as the King was unable to deliver the Opening of Parliament speech. Nevertheless Parliament began discussing a move to make George Regent while the King was incapacitated.
1789 (February)
Regency Bill
Despite controversy over the legality of Parliament debating without the King’s authority, this bill was passed by the House of Commons but before it passed the House of Lords, George III recovered. It made provision for Prince George to become Regent if the King became permanently mentally insane. It also made Charlotte guardian of King George and the royal children.
1793 (during)
George began a relationship with Frances Villiers, Countess of Jersey.
1794 (during)
George had accumulated substantial debts again. His father refused to pay off the debts unless he married his cousin, Caroline of Brunswick. George reluctantly agreed.
1794 (November)
King George III sent Lord Malmesbury to Brunswick to escort Caroline to Britain. On meeting Caroline, Malmesbury felt that she was not a suitable bride for Prince George since she was loud and brash, indescreet and had body odour due to lack of personal hygiene. He kept his thoughts to himself.
1795 (5th April)
George’s bride, Caroline of Brunswick arrived at Greenwich. She was met by George’s mistress, Frances Villiers, who George had appointed Lady of the Bedchamber.
1795 (7th April)
George met Caroline for the first time and instantly disliked her.
1795 (8th April)
George married Caroline of Brunswick at the Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace, London. The couple disliked each other on sight but went through with the marriage.
1795 (Summer)
George continued his relationship with Frances Villiers, Countess of Jersey.
1795 (Summer)
George and Caroline of Brunswick, who was pregnant, began living separately at Carlton House.
1796 (7th January)
A daughter, Charlotte Augusta, was born to George and Caroline of Brunswick at Carlton House.
1796 (10th January)
George made a will in which he left his wife one shilling and everything else to Maria FitzHerbert.
1797 (around
George’s fondness for food and drink had caused him to put on weight and he weighed around 17 stone (110 kg).
1801 (1st January)
Act of Union
The Kingdom of Ireland was formally united with the Kingdom of Great Britain as a single country, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
1803 (18th May)
Napoleonic Wars – War of the Third Coalition
War resumed against France in the face of a possible invasion of Britain by Napoleon Bonaparte. Faced with the possibility of an invasion thousands of Britons joined the army.
1804 (during)
King George III suffered another temporary period of mental instability.
1805 (21st October)
Napoleonic Wars – War of the Third Coalition – Battle of Trafalgar
This naval battle saw the British Navy commanded by Lord Horatio Nelson defeat the French fleet off Cape Trafalgar.
1806 (during)
The Delicate Investigation
A secret commission made investigations into the claims made by Sir John and Lady Douglas that Caroline of Brunswick had had an affair and given birth to a son. After interviewing Caroline and her staff the commission found no evidence to back Lady Douglas’s claims. During this time George restricted his wife’s access to her daughter and made all decisions regarding her care and upbringing. However, when George was absent nursery staff gave Caroline access to her daughter.
1806 (23rd January)
Prime Minister William Pitt the Younger died. He was succeeded as Prime Minister by William Grenville.
1807 (during)
George ended his relationship with Frances Villiers, Countess of Jersey and began a relationship with Isabella Anne Seymour-Conway, Marchioness of Hertford.
1807 (during)
King George III vetoed a proposal to allow Roman Catholics to join the armed forces in a bid to increase recruitment.
1807 (25th March)
Prime Minister William Grenville was dismissed. He was succeeded by William Cavendish-Bentinck, Duke of Portland.
1809 (4th October)
Prime Minister William Cavendish-Bentinck, Duke of Portland resigned his office. He was succeeded by Spencer Perceval.
1810 (2nd November)
George’s sister, Amelia, died at Augusta Lodge, Windsor.
1810 (late)
George was made Regent after his father, George III, suffered a bout of insanity that did not respond to treatment.
1811 (5th February)
Regency Act
This act passed most royal duties to George who was given the title Prince Regent. George took little part in government being happy to leave government to Parliament.
1812 (around)
George was angry when his wife, Caroline, enlisted the support of Whig politician Henry Brougham to help ensure access to her daughter was maintained. In retaliation he put about the rumours denounced by the Delicate Investigation of 1806. However, most people saw Caroline as the injured party and George lost popularity.
1812 (11th May)
Prime Minister Spencer Perceval was assassinated. He was succeeded by Robert Banks Jenkinson, Earl of Liverpool.
1814 (during)
George’s wife, Caroline of Brunswick, left Britain and took up residence in Italy.
1815 (during)
Napoleonic Wars – Battle of Waterloo
Napoleon was defeated by British and German troops.
1816 (2nd May)
George attended the wedding of his daughter, Charlotte, to Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld.
1817 (during)
George’s close friends, John Nash, James Burton and Decimus Burton began work on Regent’s Park and Regent Street in London, named for George.
1817 (6th November)
George’s daughter, Charlotte, died giving birth to a stillborn son. George was distraught at his daughter’s death.
1818 (11th July)
George’s brother, William, married Adeleide of Saxe-Meningen at Kew Palace, Surrey.
1818 (17th November)
George’s mother, Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz died at Kew Palace. Coming just a year after his daughter’s death, George became depressed and withdrawn.
1818 (during)
George ended his relationship with Lady Hertford.
1819 (during)
George began a relationship with Elizabeth Conyngham Marchioness Conyngham.
1819 (during)
Determined to divorce his wife, George sent a commission to Italy to find evidence of Caroline’s adultery. Caroline was concerned and stated that she would never admit to adultery. She would, however, agree to a formal separation.
1820 (23rd January)
George’s brother, Edward died at Woodbrook Cottage, Devon.
1820 (29th January)
George became King George IV after his father died at Windsor Castle.
1820 (June)
George learned that Caroline had travelled to St Omer in France and it was rumoured that she would return to England. The British government offered to increase her yearly allowance if she remained on the continent but she turned their offer down.
1820 (5th June)
Caroline returned to Britain where she was popularly received. George became more determined than ever to get his divorce.
1820 (Summer)
Pains and Penalties Bill
This bill, to end the marriage of Caroline and George and to strip Caroline of the title of Queen was debated in Parliament where it passed the House of Lords but was not put to the House of Commons because it was believed it would fail to pass. Despite the bill, Caroline remained popular with the people.
1821 (19th July)
George was crowned King George IV at Westminster Abbey. Despite being advised to stay away, his estranged wife, Caroline tried to enter the Abbey and made a scene before finally accepting defeat and riding away. Her behaviour at the doors of the Abbey lost her much support.
1821 (7th August)
George’s wife, Caroline of Brunswick, died having become ill on the evening of 19th July. During her illness she stated that she believed she had been poisoned but it is more likely that she had a bowel obstruction or cancer.
1821 (Autumn)
George made a visit to Ireland. It was the first visit by the monarch since the 13th century.
1822 (during)
George made a three-week visit to Scotland.
1824 (during)
Despite moves to allow Catholic emancipation, George publicly denounced the act stating that as Head of the Church of England he could not support pro-Catholic moves.
1824 (during)
George employed architect Jeffry Wyatville to refurbish Windsor Castle. He also hired John Nash to rebuild Buckingham House.
1826 (during)
George changed his mind about the new design for Buckingham Palace and instructed John Nash to transform it into a sumptuous palace. He did not live to see the completed work.
1827 (5th January)
George’s brother, Frederick Augustus, Duke of York, died at Rutland House, London.
1827 (10th May)
Prime Minister Robert Banks Jenkinson, Earl of Liverpool resigned due to ill health. He was succeeded by Tory George Canning.
1827 (Summer)
Prime Minister George Canning was pro Catholic emancipation. George, made a public declaration that his anti-Catholic emancipation stance was shared by his father, King George III.
1827 (31st August)
Prime Minister George Canning died. He was succeeded by Frederick Robinson, Viscount Goderich.
1828 (22nd January)
Prime Minister Frederick Robinson, Viscount Goderich died, he was succeeded by Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington.
1828 (December)
George’s sight had deteriorated greatly due to cataracts in both eyes. He had also become addicted to the drug laudanum.
1829 (29th January)
Catholic Relief Bill
Having obtained George’s reluctant support, Prime Minister Wellington introduced this bill to give Catholics the right to vote, to become a member of Parliament and to work as civil servants or judges.
1829 (4th March)
Catholic Relief Bill
George changed his mind about the bill and withdrew his support. Members of the Cabinet resigned in protest and George was forced to reinstate his agreement.
1829 (13th April)
Catholic Relief Act
The Catholic Relief Bill was passed into law
1830 (April)
George’s doctor recorded his weight as 20 stone (130 kg) and his health began to decline.
1830 (May)
George dictated his will.
1830 (26th June)
George died at Windsor Castle. He was succeeded by his brother William.

 

 

Published Jan 27, 2019 @ 3:25 pm – Updated – Jul 26, 2019 @ 12:54 pm

 

Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2019). King George IV of Great Britain and Ireland 1762 – 1830. Available: https://www.totallytimelines.com/king-george-iv-of-great-britain-and-ireland-1762-1830. Last accessed August 19th, 2019