Talk:Union of the Crowns

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Former good article nominee Union of the Crowns was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
June 6, 2007 Good article nominee Not listed
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A Bad Translation?[edit]

I really don't know what to make of this article: it is either a bad translation from a foreign language, or it has been written by someone who is not an native English speaker. As a possible alternative, it might, I suppose, have been co-written by a panel of minor bureaucrats at the Ministry of Circumlocution. It is so badly phrased that it breaks down at several points into complete incoherence. Given the importance of the topic it is in urgent need of rescue. I'm not sure if I have the time or the inclination. Rcpaterson 00:41, 22 May 2006 (UTC)

I'm not sure if I have the time or the inclination. Why not, if you think its so important?

Yes, I suppose you are right; its wrong to raise a problem and assume others will attend to its resolution-thanks. Time is still an issue, though, but I will do my best. I have to say, in fairness, that I would come as a 'resurrectionist' rather than a surgeon; the patient in his present condition is beyond saving. I am, I should also say, new to this whole project, and am not sure if it is legitimate to submit articles to wholesale substitution? Rcpaterson 09:01, 22 May 2006 (UTC)

  • I agree, the tone of the article is a bit odd for an encyclopedia. I have added the {{tone}} tag. --JW1805 (Talk) 00:01, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Union and Crowns[edit]

Having found the time-and the inclination-I have built the ship anew. It's an important story, worth telling and worth understanding. Rcpaterson 01:28, 28 June 2006 (UTC)

Plagiaristic Prose?[edit]

I have taken it upon myself to expand into detail the background of British identity in the Anglo-Scottish borderlands and its impact upon Northern Ireland, whilst the rest of the article appears glossy and poetic as opposed to dealing with the grey areas--I leave that for others' fixing. Lord Loxley 10:31, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

I further explained the Scottish monarchy's connections with England and revised the error which purported that George III was sympathetic or even cared about Scotland any more than he had an understanding of America--that we leave to his rebellious heir. Lord Loxley 10:50, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

User:Mais oui! is one of those Scottish editors who cannot bear English presentations of events which affect both England and Scotland. S/he automatically reverts anything beyond the sense of "cliqueness" of his/her immediately approved consensus among like-minded folks in the Scottish community. Please, there can be no cookie-cutter poetry to describe the events which led to British Union. They were not all of one source or intent; one should hardly think it is necessary to omit the Catholic contribution to the Union, when merely skimming through history books casts this to light on Tudor-Stuart affairs. Lord Loxley 11:06, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

I think that you are missing the point somewhat. There are three objections that I can see to your edits. None of them particularly to do with factual accuracy, with "English presentation" or with Catholic/Protestant bias.
1) Your edit of the paragraph on the Plantation and its British nature has split the introductory sentence from its explanatory follow-up by interpolating information on another topic. Now there's nothing wrong with adding more examples of the king's attempts to Britonise the Scots and the English but you shouldn't mess up the explanation of the most succesful attempt in your haste to do so. The current result of your edit is that the explanation of the Britishness of the Plantation has beeen confused and diluted.
2) Both of your major edits are chronologically wandering. If you read the article version last edited by RCPaterson carefully, you will note that it moves steadily forward chronologically as you read. This style makes it easier for our readers to grasp "the story" and thus to see how the facts fit into place. Now if you look at your additions you will note that they "flashback" to earlier events, all true but some not particularly relevant, thus interrupting the flow of the story. This is Not Good, however accurate the facts added, since it makes the article more difficult to read. Our aim is not throw a random assortment of facts at our readers although you could be forgiven for thinking that it is, given the state of many of our other articles. Nevertheless this article has been nicely rewritten by a professional writer on history and thus we must take more care when we want to add to it, that we apply higher standards to our own editing.
3) Your replacement of George III by George IV seems ill-advised. Granted that G IV visited Scotland whereas G III didn't, but that merely suggests that he liked Scotland better than his father may have. It tells us nothing about his feelings of Britishness vs Scottish/Englishness which the older version did. The important contrast is between Anne who stated that she felt English at heart and G III who stated that he was proud to be a Briton. That explanatory contrast was lost when you made your edits.
So while I think that Mais Oui! often reverts in circumstances where I would hesitate to do so, I think that he is entirely right to do so in this case and I will be doing likewise. However I think that you deserve the courtesy of an explanation which is why I have spent this time explaining my reasons for you. I will also be correcting a few spelling mistakes which I have noticed while reading the article. I will then see whether there is some way that some of your additions to the Plantation paragraph can be added back in to the article, since they are quite informative. It's just that they are in the wrong place and they are unsourced. If that can be sorted out they should make the article better. -- Derek Ross | Talk 23:06, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
Having tackled the two sections affected, my comments largely coincide with Derek's. The article's about James's attempts to achieve a unified kingdom, not hypothetical aims of a union of the parliaments. The point about granting of cross-border titles is only relevant in this section if a citation can show that this involved creating a British identity: it should be noted that aristocratic and royal titles have long crossed borders without any indication that the countries are merged: IIRC an earlier example is the Bruce, and a later one Hanover. The first part of the paragraph starting with the north of England would perhaps have some relevance in the "The Thistle and the Rose" section, along with an indication of James's care to position himself to take the Protestant throne of England, but the Catholic bit that follows is off topic, and the Henrican comment ill judged as James had long worked to achieve the same kind of royal control of the church in the Scottish context, with some success despite widespread opposition. I've left in the .doc from Northern Ireland, but note that it concludes with a misleading comment about Presbyterianism and doubt its reliability as a source. ..dave souza, talk 00:26, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Oh, and I left in the bit about where the Planters came from which seemed plausible, but this should really have a reliable source. ..dave souza, talk 00:36, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

I agree with you both, except the part on King George--although I know the Highlanders were Loyalists in the American wars, for this, George handed Henry Benedict Stuart a pension and the future was sealed under Georgie Porgie. My formatting was horrible, but the presentation of facts was a reflection of actual events. Why should only the slimmed down, Protestant version be used as the standard of British history, when the Union occurred in a backdrop of varied relationships? Catholic Stewart court was a large part of the Union (just as Parliamentarians were Calvinist), while aristocratic titles and feudal associations long tied Reivers on both sides into the same culture. When James assumed both monarchy-titles, so did his nobles in the status they held as peers of the realm: England and Scotland, York and Albany, Richmond and Lennox, Prince of Wales and Lord of the Isles--these arrangements were just as monumentous as the Union of the Crowns and took place before government machinery had a chance to solidify in 1707. I still believe that the issue of passive background to the Anglo-Scottish Union of Crowns should be explored, with detail on the Douglases. Lord Loxley 07:09, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

A Tragic Waste[edit]

I have to add a word or two to the above, and I address these remarks to the community as a whole, not to any particular individual. I first read the previous piece on the Union of the Crowns not long after I started to dip in to Wikipedia. It was so bad, both in point of fact and in style, that I though it was some kind of joke: it really did look as if it had been translated from a foreign language. I am indeed a professional historian, but I know how Wikipedia operates, and I have absolutely no desire to make a claim to 'ownership' to any contribution I make. Moreover, I welcome thoughtful editing and comment. My sole purpose has been to spend some sleepless hours trying to extend-and deepen-the range of topics touching on Scotland. This article has not been edited; it is being smothered by fatuous and incoherent additions which robs the piece of both integrity and sense. My suspicion is that this is being done by the original author; for though a different name is used the same atrocious style of writing and ignorance of the facts is clearly evident. As things stand I would rather return to the original contribution than allow what I have written to be aborted by degrees. I will leave this for a day or two to allow others to comment as they wish before reverting. Rcpaterson 00:31, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

Please note my edits and comments above: there are some points which I've left in, but am not confident of their accuracy. On a stylistic note, - between-words should really be an n-dash – and quotations should probably be in "double quotes" rather than 'single ones' for reasons which I've forgotten, but there was a discussion of that somewhere. Will try to assist with that kind of copyediting when time permits. ..dave souza, talk 00:45, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Because of the nature of Wikipedia some change in the article is inevitable. However this article could deteriorate considerably and still be much better than its predecessor. I don't believe that it would serve the interests of Wikipedia to revert to the old article and I would be very unhappy if that were to happen. Please don't think that a "deteriorated" article would harm your reputation. Wikipedia's history feature makes it absolutely clear who is responsible for the good article versions and for the bad...
In any case perhaps the way forward is for a new category of article. Perhaps in the same way that we currently have "Featured Articles" we need a category for "Finished Articles" where the coverage and writing standard of an article is such that people should only suggest changes to it on its discussion page rather than making them directly to the article. -- Derek Ross | Talk 02:08, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

RCP, your predilection for insomniac editing has brought a comical aspect to the article which has a veritable light and thin countenance. Maybe you'd appreciate that this is not novelisation of issues; this is an encyclopaedia, which depends on monotonous descriptions and information. Lord Loxley 07:09, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

Revert to Original[edit]

I've reverted this to the original. My reasons for doing so can be found in the talk page history of JW1805 (talk · contribs) Rcpaterson 00:21, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

  • And I've reverted it back. Just because somebody adds a {{tone}} tag to an article you have worked on is no reason to throw a hissy fit. --JW1805 (Talk) 01:14, 28 August 2006 (UTC)


I've removed the Template:Inappropriate tone tag as it's worse than useless: it advertises at the head of the article the editor's vague personal opinion that the style isn't right, and links to Wikipedia:Guide to writing better articles which only mentions tone once, in the context of the option (NOT requirement) of using News style, which itself gives little or no guidance about "tone". There's a case for listing articles for cleanup to draw in help, and this can usefully be done with tags on the talk pages of articles, but this tag on the article itself is at best an irritation and insult to editors who have put considerable effort into improving the article. If you see faults in the article, the best things to do are to edit it, or draw attention on the talk page to exactly what problem you find. ...dave souza, talk 11:36, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Article title[edit]

Can I propose this is moved to something like "Union of Crowns (1603)", as there are many other such "unions of crowns"... the ones which spring to mind are the Scandinavian unions, the Spanish unions etc etc --MacRusgail 22:02, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

GA fail[edit]

No citations after the first two sections. Alientraveller 18:38, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

Date of formation of the United Kingdom?[edit]

After much debate, the editors of the United Kingdom article seem to have settled on 1707 as being the foundation of the state (I note with concern though that this date lacks any external referencing, per official Wikipedia policy WP:VERIFY).

But this article - List of countries by formation dates - claims that the UK was actually founded in 1603 (again, completely unreferenced). Both articles cannot be correct, so which is it? Please come to the party armed with some proper external refs, because I am not sure if we can stomach yet another verbally diarrhetic Talk page splurge with largely consists of ad hominem attacks and statements of totally unsourced opinion. --Mais oui! (talk) 23:36, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland was formed by Act of Parliament in 1800. This united the countries of Great Britian and Ireland, with the Irish Parliament in Dublin (House of Commons and Lords) being dissolved and the Irish MPs sitting in the United Kingdom Parliament at Westminster (with representative Irish Peers sitting in the House of Lords).

Do not confuse this with the earlier Acts of Union in 1707, which united the Kingdoms of England and Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britian. Again, the same process occured, with the Scottish Parliament being abolished and with Scottish MPs sitting in the new British Parliament at Westminster (and again with representative Scottish Peers sitting in the House of Lords). Ds1994 (talk) 10:47, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

'Union of the Crowns' and '1603-1707' Totally Misleading[edit]

I'm sorry, but this article 'Union of the Crowns' discussed within the context 1603-1707 is totally misleading.

The period 1603-1707 was a 'personal' union, and had nothing to do with the crowns themselves. Sovereigns in this period continued to be crowned separately up to Charles II, and even after then they continued to have separate regnal titles in each of the respective countries. The situation was not resolved until 1707 with the Acts of Union, forming the country of Great Britain. Only from then was one crown used, St Edward's Crown, which was converted from the Crown of England to the Crown of Great Britain. The Scottish crown jewels (the Honours of Scotland including the Scottish Crown) then went into 'abeyance' at Edinburgh Castle and have not been worn since (although the Crown of Scotland does now make an appearance at the Opening of the Scottish Parliament, but is still not worn).

I can only assume this article has been written by a foreigner residing outside the United Kingdom.

Ds1994 (talk) 10:27, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

The second paragraph of the introduction explains this.
"The term itself, though now generally accepted, is misleading; for properly speaking this was merely a personal or dynastic union, the Crowns remaining both distinct and separate, despite James's best efforts to create a new "imperial" throne of 'Great Britain'. "
The term "union of the crowns" has many references so the article title is justified. BritishWatcher (talk) 11:09, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

I can read thanks. There may be references to the term 'union of the crowns' but I don't think this in itself is justification to perpetuate a myth at best, or an historical inaccuracy at worst.

I have made a minor grammatical alteration in the first sentence of the article to emphasise the historical inaccuracy of this misleading term.

Ds1994 (talk) 19:04, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

discussion on unionism[edit]

see [1] --KarlB (talk) 02:45, 30 April 2012 (UTC)

I have attempted unsuccessfully to remove the Category:British unionism, saying in an edit summary that the union of the crowns happened long before "unionism" raised its head. KarlB provides a link to an article which says "Asked to summarise the condition of unionism, a reasonably well informed student of British politics might respond that its fortunes have declined with those of the Unionist Party, the name of Scotland’s Tories during much of the 20th century, as the vigour of the Scottish National Party has increased. That would be true. But implicit in the answer is the belief that unionism is the antithesis of nationalism, and that the Scottish Tories, as Unionists, took their philosophy from the parliamentary union between Scotland and England in 1707, if not the union of the crowns in 1603. That would not be true." I see nothing to support the notion that "unionism" was at work in 1603. What do others think? Moonraker (talk) 03:51, 30 April 2012 (UTC)
Sorry I should have given more context; this is the relevant quote "As Mr Kidd reveals in his subtle and scholarly book, unionism and nationalism are not opposites. For most of modern times, they have been contented bedmates. Moreover, unionism is a long-standing ideology that predates by some 80 years even the union of the crowns;" --KarlB (talk) 03:54, 30 April 2012 (UTC)

Description of the Scottish Parliament[edit]

"For James, whose experience of parliaments was limited to the stage-managed and semi-feudal Scottish variety, the self-assurance — and obduracy — of the English version, which had long experience of upsetting monarchs, was an obvious shock."

I do not believe this dim view of the Parliament of Scotland is universally held by historians, so this statement is hardly a self-evident truth and could do with a citation, the tone is also less than encyclopedic. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:12, 12 December 2012 (UTC)

The section Success of the union[edit]

It seems POV. For instance the following sentence "In the end the union of Scotland and England was to be successful but it was never a marriage of equals". It also does not cite any references. Tmfs10 (talk) 02:14, 4 May 2013 (UTC)

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