“ ‘The Best Laid Plans’: French and British Diplomatic Strategy in the Jacobite Rising of 1745”
This project analyses the Jacobite Rising of 1745 in an international context. In particular, the thesis looks at French involvement and promises of support for the Jacobites both before and throughout the first months of the ’45. Without a doubt, the French King and Conseil d’état sought to support the Jacobites as a means of achieving a greater goal of challenging Great Britain. While other scholars have made the case that the French Conseil’s disorganization and mismanagement resulted in French inability to provide their promised aid to Prince Charles Stuart and his Jacobite forces in Scotland, this project argues that it was actually the incoherence and inconsistency of messages within the Jacobite movement itself that prevented the French Conseil from understanding Jacobite ambitions and effectively executing French plans to provide military support. Such incoherent messaging had disastrous effects for the ’45 Rising itself, but also had implications for larger French strategy as it pertained to their rivalry with Great Britain.