Roderick McLean

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Roderick McLean (died 9 June 1921) attempted to assassinate Queen Victoria on 2 March 1882, at Windsor, England, with a pistol. This was the last of eight attempts by separate people to kill or assault Victoria over a period of forty years . McLean's motive was purportedly a curt reply to some poetry that he had mailed to the Queen.

Tried for high treason on 20 April, the Scotsman was found "not guilty, but insane" by a jury after five minutes' deliberation, and he lived out his remaining days in Broadmoor Asylum. The verdict prompted the Queen to ask for a change in English law so that those implicated in cases with similar outcomes would be considered as "guilty, but insane"; this led to the Trial of Lunatics Act 1883.

A poem was later written about McLean's attempt on the Queen's life by William Topaz McGonagall.[1]


  1. ^ McGonagall Online: Attempted Assassination of the Queen,; accessed 10 March 2017.