Jacobite Diaspora, the Stuart Court and the Greater Caribbean, 1688-c.1750
Item statusRestricted Access
Embargo end date19/12/2023
Lewis, Harry Maximillian
This thesis examines the Jacobite diaspora across the Greater Caribbean and its relations with the Stuart court and Jacobite exiles in Europe in the period 1688 to c.1750. The Jacobites were the supporters of the Catholic branch of the Stuart dynasty who for decades sought to reverse the ‘Glorious Revolution’ of 1688-89, often with the aid of their continental European allies. The thesis contests the prevailing historiographical view that separates Jacobites in the Greater Caribbean from their peers in Europe, arguing that Jacobites in the region significantly interacted with, and at times mirrored, their counterparts across the Atlantic. By situating the Jacobites within the wider imperial competition in the Greater Caribbean over trade, land and resources between Britain, France and Spain, this thesis uses the methodology of diasporic global history to expand analyses of the movement. This demonstrates how subjects hitherto studied in Britain and Ireland, such as the forfeiture of Jacobite estates, extended to the region. It also shows how the connections of Jacobites to the region, through trade and settlement, impacted the activities of the wider diaspora centred on the Stuart court. Moreover, approaching Jacobite merchants, planters, slave traders and doctors through the frame of their common Stuart loyalism allows for a reassessment of historiographies regarding Scottish and Irish migrants in the Caribbean during a period when much of the region transitioned to plantation economies dependant on enslaved Africans’ labour. This thesis utilises a variety of archival materials, focussing on the records of the Stuart court in exile alongside the archives of the British and French imperial governments. Taken together, these records provide a wealth of new evidence and insight into the extent of Jacobite activities in the Greater Caribbean and reveal the significance of this diaspora for the wider study of Jacobitism and the Caribbean.