Talk:George IV of the United Kingdom

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Featured article George IV of the United Kingdom is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
Main Page trophy This article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on April 2, 2006.

older entries[edit]

Where was John Bellingham described as a "madman"? His entry states that his sanity "was not questioned by the court".redcountess 00:22, Dec 25, 2004 (UTC)

Do we really need a detailed outline of a Blackadder episode here? Bastie 20:31, 23 August 2005 (UTC)

Ok, I'm going to get rid of it. Bastie 21:04, 23 September 2005 (UTC)

Speaking of Blackadder, why does it say here that Hugh Larie played George IV, but in the Blackadder entry it says Hugh played George III, and the end episode shows Blackadder himself taking over the reigns to become IV?

Hugh Laurie's character in Blackadder (as noted in that article and at Prince George) is based on George IV, but before his father's death; thus he is the Prince of Wales, not the King. When he is killed at the end of Blackadder 3, Blackadder does not succeed the prince, he replaces him (since Wellington, the only witness to the death, believes Blackadder is the Prince and the Prince is Blackadder, and George III is mad and cannot recognise his own son). See? FiggyBee 14:48, 8 March 2006 (UTC)
Yeah I can see that. But, actually it was the "Mr._E._Blackadder" entry that states Edmund went on to become George there is a discrepency there, not this article. Also why cant I post in Discussion there? It says there is no Mr._E._Blackadder entry and yet I am looking at it right now. Hmm.
There is no Talk:Mr._E._Blackadder yet because no-one has discussed that article. You can still post there (or at least you could if you were signed in) and start the page. In any case, there is no discrepency. At the end of Blackadder 3, George III is still alive, and Blackadder takes the place of the Prince of Wales (Hugh Laurie's character). When George III dies, Blackadder becomes George IV. I wouldn't have thought it was too hard to grasp. FiggyBee 12:26, 11 March 2006 (UTC)

Neither can I actually, somehow I thought Laurie was number III, rather than his his father. Oh well, thanks.

Odd fetish[edit]

"It is reported that every time George IV was with a woman he would cut a lock of her hair and place it in an envelope with her name on it. At the time of his death there were allegedly 7000 such envelopes" That is a different woman every day for 19 years. C'mon lets have some reality here, or at least a source for this piece of information.

If it is true, it should be in a trivia section rather than the lead. Why the coy middle class language "with a woman" doe this mean every time he was in the same room as an adult woman he attacked her with a pair of scissors or did he only do this following sexual intercourse? I think we should be told. A reliable source in a week or it goes. Giano | talk 09:35, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

A pity you want reliable sources... I can give you some unreliable ones - ignoring Wikipedia clones, [1] [2] (nice prints) [3][4] [5] (the last suggests Max Beerbohm or The Guinness Book of Oddities are places to start) -- ALoan (Talk) 20:14, 7 March 2006 (UTC)
  • ALoan! Half way through reading one of those sites it was an immense relief to suddenly spot it was entitled "Unbelievable facts" You're right I don't believe. Have you a concrete reason why the informative fact that George VI slept with 7000 women should not be removed. In my own rather more limited experience women (even after deep joy) tend to turn rather rebellious if one attempts to give them a post coital haircut and restyle. Do we have a woman here who may like to comment further? Giano | talk 21:39, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

Just to note - George IV would've been at it for well over 19 years. Probably he'd have been on it from, say, 1780 (when he turned 18) until 1830 - that's 50 years. Which means only one woman every three days or so...that being said, the number does seem highly dubious. At any rate, I don't think the current phrasing implies that the story is actually true, just that it's a story that has been told. Moving it to the trivia section seems appropriate, though. john k 04:34, 8 March 2006 (UTC)

  • Oh, a different woman every three days for all his adult life - Oh that's OK then - very plausible! I am very sceptical and strongly suspect it is an apocryphal myth. Suggest we leave it a week for the original editor of this information to come up with something and then move it to a trivia section if you guys think it should remain. Personally I'd dump it as a load of old rubbish. Giano | talk 07:17, 8 March 2006 (UTC)
Myths have value in article as myths. "He had locks of hair from 7000 women" is probably apocryphal, but "A legend goes that he had locks of hair from 7000 women" could very well be factual. —Gabbe 22:12, 8 March 2006 (UTC)
Exactly. john k 00:37, 9 March 2006 (UTC)
I share the same concern as Giano. The phrasing "with a woman" strikes me as both silly and inexact; we could use some clarity as to whether we mean sexual intercourse only here, or any kiss, or whenever he simply spent time with a woman. It also badly needs a source. Why this vague "allegedly"? Who is alleging this, exactly--popular rumor? A nasty contemporary? His valet? Later historians? I could allege all sorts of things about George IV, but you probably wouldn't want to include them... --Khazar 00:38, 2 April 2006 (UTC)
I think the introductory section is overly reliant on rumour and scandal-mongering writers. I doubt the 7,000 claim - George wasn't overly concerned with women, but kept mistresses more because that was the fashion, particularly in France, a country which the King much admired. I also suggest that the reference to the King's political attitude is ahistorical, applying later (and especially post-Bagehot) understanding of the role of a constitutional monarch to a time when such ideas were in their infancy.Ncox 06:16, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

Navigating the Hyperlinks[edit]

I noticed when this article was on the front page that George IV's habit of interfering in politics gave Catholic Emancipation as an example. Curious to know the details, I clicked on the link, and got to an article explaining Catholic Emancipation (which I already know something about) that did not say anything about George IV. I eventually noticed that there was a section in the article about the issue, which does not contain a link for those curious to know what Catholic Emancipation was all about. I therefore think the links should be the other way round.

Instead of:

  • Mention of George IV's political interference
--> explanation of Catholic Emancipation
(but no link to details of his interference)
  • Details of George IV's interference in CE
(but no link to an explanation of CE)

I think the links should go:

  • Mention of George IV's political interference
--> details of his interference in Catholic Emancipation
--> explanation of what CE is all about

I don't feel strongly enough about it to alter the entry unilaterally, but I thought I'd mention it: if enough people agree, maybe I will make the changes.

Del C 15:04, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

"His Late Majesty"[edit]

Is there any specified convention as to referring to deceased monarchs of Great Britain/the United Kingdom, where by the dead monarch must be referred to as "His/Her Late Majesty?" I noticed this title above the photograph; should every monarch's page thus be modified to read "His/Her Late Majesty?"


No. It is against the Manual of Style rules. I've deleted it. It should never have been there. FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 20:02, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

  • On the front page of Wikipedia, in a Featured Article, one reads, at the beginning of a biography: "It is reported that every time he had intimate relations with a woman he would cut a lock of her hair and place it in an envelope with her name on it. At the time of his death there were allegedly 7,000 such envelopes." It is reported by whom? Too naïve, even for Wikipedia. (I note that it was added by a public library User: at Buckinghamshire County Council, and not one fan of Georgette Heyer has doubted its truth and value. --Wetman 15:23, 2 April 2006 (UTC)
I agree completely; it very much surprises me that that made it through peer review untouched.--Khazar 16:38, 2 April 2006 (UTC)
This article was identified as featured in 2004. Standards were a bit less rigid back then. Joelito 19:02, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

When did The Economist praise George IV?[edit]

Under Section 7 - Legacy, the article states that George IV was not well regarded upon his death in 1830. This is stated in the second paragraph, which quotes an unfavorable obituary of the time.

However, in the third paragraph, the article states the following:

"The Economist, on the other hand, commented favourably on George's dislike of the Corn Laws and pro-free-trade opinions"

Just when did The Economist offer this position? It could not have been in 1830, since The Economist did not begin publication until 1843.

If the above quote is correct, does it make sense to place it in such close proximity to an obituary? The juxtaposition implies that The Economist wrote a laudatory obit of George IV when he died, which was clearly impossible.

I seem to remember an article about six months ago, rating various British monarchs and US presidents, which had a favourable opinion of George IV. However, you are certainly correct that The Economist could not have published a contemporary obituary.-- 17:10, 5 April 2006 (UTC)

If the Economist was founded in 1843, it is at least plausible that something could have been written around that time, as part of the Economist's own opposition to the Corn Laws. john k 02:33, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Style and Arms[edit]

There is a discrepancy between the Arms as described in this section and the Arms as included in the House of Hanover template. Did he use a different form to the rest of the family, or is the template version incorrect? --Yendor1958 10:53, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

The page had the older arms as used by George I and II - with the Act of Union in 1801, George III gave up the vestigial British claim to the Throne of France and the fleurs-de-lis were removed from his (and subsequent) arms. I have changed it to the correct later arms. FiggyBee 14:35, 14 April 2006 (UTC)

Cost of the Coronation[edit]

The article states that George IV's coronation cost over £900 000, a truly staggering sum for those days. Near the bottom of this article ( I read that it cost £238 000, and it gives a breakdown of where those monies came from. The lower sum seems more plausible to me. Is there a source for the higher amount? I'd want more than the say-so of another web site to go changing the article.--Iacobus 06:29, 5 April 2006 (UTC)

  • I have changed the amount so that it matches that given in three hard-copy biographies (£243 000). DrKiernan 09:13, 13 February 2007 (UTC)


This article only has one reference. If it is to keep its featured status, someone needs to add a few more. --Arctic Gnome 14:44, 7 January 2007 (UTC)


"Towards the end of his life, he also began to show symptoms of mental illness but never to the same extent as his father. He claimed to have been a soldier and to have fought at the Battle of Waterloo."[1]

I have removed the above because it is probably a distortion of what actually happened. According to The private letters of Princess Lieven to Prince Metternich, 1820–1826 edited by Quennell (1937) the King merely pretended to have fought at Waterloo disguised as General Bock in order to annoy the Duke of Wellington. Wellington said, in response to the King's jest, that he sometimes thought that the King was mad. These jocular remarks have been taken out of context in the section of the article quoted above. DrKiernan 08:10, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

I have read that he was sometimes referred to as "Prinny", but don't have a source for it. In Brighton Pavilion there is a scurrilous painting of him with "The Spirit of Brighton". The painting is often reproduced on postcards, etc. so it would be nice if it could be included as an illustration of popular attitudes to him. Itsmejudith 12:39, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Titles, styles, honours and arms[edit]

I have just noticed that the section Titles, styles, honours and arms only goes on to deal with titles, styles and arms. Could someone expert in such matters add a subsection concerning his honours, please? talkGiler S 12:37, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

You can see them here.[6]. DrKiernan 14:19, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Many thanks. I've added them (well, the British ones, anyway) to the relevant section. talkGiler S 16:12, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Saxe-Coburg-Saalfield ?[edit]

Hi! At a few places throughout Wikipedia I see the house "Saxe-Coburg-Saalfield", other times "Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld" (no "i" in "feld"). I think some consistency might be in order, and would favour "Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld" (no "i"). Frank —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:31, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Changed. DrKiernan 09:02, 6 November 2007 (UTC)

Age when coronated?[edit]

Would be nice if the intro included what age he was when he became King. 5Q5 (talk) 19:25, 3 April 2009 (UTC)

New file File:How to get Un-married, - Ay, there's the Rub! by J.L. Marks.jpg[edit]

How to get Un-married, - Ay, there's the Rub! by J.L. Marks.jpg

Recently the file File:How to get Un-married, - Ay, there's the Rub! by J.L. Marks.jpg (right) was uploaded and it appears to be relevant to this article and not currently used by it. If you're interested and think it would be a useful addition, please feel free to include it. This caricature by J.L. Marks mocks George IV's attempts to divorce Queen Caroline. Dcoetzee 23:48, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

First visit to Scotland since when?[edit]

His visit to Scotland, organised by Sir Walter Scott, was the first by a reigning British monarch since Charles I went there in 1633

What about Charles II in 1650-51? I know he wasn't recognized as King of England at the time, but in retrospect he was considered to be reigning monarch, and he was certainly the reigning king of Scotland. Oh, and Charles I definitely visited Scotland in 1641. john k (talk) 01:50, 29 August 2009 (UTC)

Charles II didn't become the monarch until 1660, and he did not reign in Scotland before that because Oliver Cromwell conquered the whole country by 1651. ( (talk) 18:59, 10 July 2011 (UTC))
Charles was the reigning King of Scotland from 1649 until Cromwell's conquest. DrKiernan (talk) 19:38, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

I don't think the British government recognised him as the King of Scotland. ( (talk) 21:57, 10 July 2011 (UTC))

The English government and Parliament did not. The Scottish government and Parliament did. DrKiernan (talk) 06:40, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

Charles II was no more the monarch in 1649 than James Francis Edward Stuart was in 1715. ( (talk) 17:48, 11 July 2011 (UTC))

James Stuart was not recognised by government or parliament or in law. Charles was. DrKiernan (talk) 18:23, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

Mental instability[edit]

I have seen it claimed that George began to show signs of mental instability towards the end of his life, although less extreme than his father, and would tell people about how he was at the Battle of Waterloo. It is possible he was just trying to wind up the Duke of Wellington, but do we have a source? PatGallacher (talk) 11:28, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

From Christopher Hibbert's article in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (which is an abridged version of his two-volume study): "the king had to deal with the duke of Wellington, whom he found far less companionable [than Canning] and whom he exasperated by taking a perverse pleasure in pretending that he had fought at Waterloo".
According to a private letter from Princess Lieven to Prince Metternich, which was published in the twentieth century, the King joked that he had fought at Waterloo dressed up as General Bock, to which Wellington retorted that he sometimes thought the King was mad. Using this as evidence of insanity takes the quote from Wellington out-of-context. DrKiernan (talk) 12:08, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

George IV and his daughter both suffered from the same mental illness as George III. During his reign George IV would often tell guests how he had fought at the Battle of Waterloo, and personally won the Derby. The Duke of Wellington had no doubt the King was serious, saying, "I think insanity runs in the family." ( (talk) 15:16, 1 October 2009 (UTC))

George IV was more likely a bragget, as he was quite conceded. GoodDay (talk) 19:09, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

The IP range beginning 92.. is used by banned User:HarveyCarter, who has already targeted this article multiple times, e.g. [7][8]. The supposed illnesses of British monarchs is one of his favorite topics. In accordance with WP:BAN, edits by banned editors may be reverted without explanation at any time. DrKiernan (talk) 07:14, 2 October 2009 (UTC)

The supposed illnesses of British monarchs may well have been the subject of wild speculation at times, but not all reports should be dismissed out of hand. Does anyone have any reliable sources which would clarify matters one way or the other? Although we should be cautious about diagnoses from this distance away, George III's illness is widely believed to be prophyria. This is the irst I have heard about Princess Charlotte being mentally ill, although she could have had a bit of a temper. PatGallacher (talk) 09:23, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
Hibbert is a reliable source. DrKiernan (talk) 09:49, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
I know I'm a little late, but Wellington thought Queen Victoria was "insane", too, a fact which Victoria & Wellington biographer Elizabeth Longford dismisses as dubious. -- Jack1755 (talk) 15:57, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

Page story is not true[edit]

George IV never said those last words. According to the biography I read he had "passed a large extraction mixed with blood", then went into a coma and died. ( (talk) 14:25, 5 December 2009 (UTC))

Crown Prince of Hanover[edit]

As George IV was Prince of Wales and heir apparent to the King in his capacity as King of the UK, he was also the Crown Prince of Hanover given that he was also heir apparent to the King of Hanover (same person). I included this title because I find the listing of titles and styles to be very anglocentric. I have a source for it as well but I do not know how to incorporate it. Can anyone be of assistance? Thank you! :-) Seven Letters 22:33, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

Curious anomaly with respect to conversion into today's monetary value[edit]

Under the heading of "Early Life", there is a curious anomaly regarding the conversion of the value of £60.000 converted into today's monetary value.

"The Prince turned 21 in 1783, and obtained a grant of £60,000 (equal to £5,744,000 today) from Parliament"

"In 1787, the Prince's political allies proposed to relieve his debts with a parliamentary grant. ... Parliament, meanwhile, granted the Prince . . . and £60,000 (equal to £6,252,000 today) for improvements to Carlton House."

In other words, in just four years, the same sum of money, i.e., £60.000, has increased in value, converted into today's monetary value, by £508.000!

How has this been worked out, and by whom???

20:06, 3 October 2010 (UTC) Anna - Borsey379 - 03.10.2010 (2nd October 2010) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Borsey379 (talkcontribs)

It's calculated using Template:Inflation, which draws its information from DrKiernan (talk) 20:17, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Brazilian orders are despicted as Portuguese and awarded even before they existed![edit]

Two Brazilian Order of Chivalry are presented in this "featured" article as Portuguese and awarded in 1818, when none of them existed yet. It wouldn't have hurt much if whoever wrote this article had done a little more research. --Lecen (talk) 00:59, 10 December 2010 (UTC)


The article Prinny says "For 'Prinny' as a historical nickname, see George IV of the United Kingdom." However, the name is not mentioned in this article. It would be good to rectify this. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:59, 29 December 2010 (UTC)


this page should be moved to george IV. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:46, 16 January 2011 (UTC)

Heir to the Thrones succession box[edit]

Firstly, this succession box is inaccurate. He was heir to the thrones between 1820 and 1830. Before his father's death, he was heir apparent since nobody can be the heir of a living person (Nemo est heres viventis). However, what really concerns me is the triviality of this kind of succession boxes. It prompts users to create similar boxes and clog articles with them. It also poses the question: if "Heir to the British throne" is included, why exclude boxes such as "Heir to Bremen-Verden" and "Heir to the Saxe-Lauenburg throne"? Finally, do we really need succession boxes for the status of being first in line to a throne, especially when we have boxes related to titles such as Prince of Wales and Duke of Cornwall? Surtsicna (talk) 21:54, 4 October 2011 (UTC)

The meaning of English words is determined by the consensus of educated speakers, not Latin tags. Removing heir to the throne succession boxes is a drastic step which would need to be taken by an appropriate wider discussion. I take the point that sometimes a large number of succession boxes can clutter up an article, but I don't think this is the best place to start. PatGallacher (talk) 23:38, 4 October 2011 (UTC)

I'd be in favour of removing these, or at least changing their wording (I'm not sure how). What we have now makes it look as it there was a formal title "Heir to the Throne(s)". (Oh, and can someone explain on some page, maybe at heir apparent, this curious meaning of "heir" to mean the current holder of a title?)Kotniski (talk) 10:21, 5 October 2011 (UTC)
And what, exactly, is the consensus of educated speakers in this case and who are those educated speakers? I am asking because it seems to be the consensus that Elizabeth II is Queen of England and that Charles is the heir. There is a reason why Charles is properly said to be heir apparent - because it is apparent that he will inherit the crown, i.e. become the heir of the body of Electress Sophia. Anyway, I truly fail to see what is so "drastic" about removing an incorrect, trivial and redundant succession box and how wide the discussion has to be for such an edit. Surtsicna (talk) 13:33, 5 October 2011 (UTC)

I have initiated a discussion of this matter at the talk page for the Manual of Style Biographies page. PatGallacher (talk) 18:52, 6 October 2011 (UTC)

Thank you. Do you intend for the discussion to be moved there or are you just trying to raise attention on that talk page? +Surtsicna (talk) 11:31, 8 October 2011 (UTC)

I think heir to the throne is needed in the succession box(For British Monarch), Although it is not a title heir has a responsibility and publisity for even a presumptive, and their is no formal title for a heir/heiress presumptive in Britain. Also no formal title given for a heiress aparent(only one time occured to date)Chamika1990 (talk) 14:43, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

I hope for any discussion to continue there as this has issues for biographies generally, not one monarch. PatGallacher (talk) 14:32, 8 October 2011 (UTC)

Laurel wreath on coins[edit]

"George IV was the last British King to be shown on coins wearing a Roman-style laurel wreath." I am unsure of the significance of this as I seem to remember that the pre-decimal coins of our present Queen show her wearing a laurel wreath. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tglawson (talkcontribs) 13:17, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

Yes, she does. Although it says "king" and not "monarch", I've just cut it as it does seem faintly misleading. DrKiernan (talk) 13:35, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

Settling of debts[edit]

While researching another topic, I came across this in the London Gazette (issue 15039, from the bottom of page 636 to the top of page 637):

Given the wording, this appears to be a regular thing ("... accrued within the Quarter ending this day..."), or else had became so bad by 1798 that this had to be declared. The article does mention that "... the Prince of Wales's debts of 1795 were finally cleared in 1806, although the debts he had incurred since 1795 remained", and a further search of the Gazette reveals this and this, issued from Carlton House on 24 September 1795. Might these be worth inclusion, and are there any further sources supporting the issue of these notices (e.g. were there particular periods during which he spent wildly, or how constant was it if not)? From these notices being placed, I'd imagine it suggests that the Prince Regent was still spending in great excess despite the best efforts of those around him to manage his debts, so it may help to illustrate how great the challenge of managing the Prince Regent and his extravagance was. — Sasuke Sarutobi (talk) 16:54, 1 January 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ "George IV". Spartacus Educational. Retrieved 2006-08-23.