© National Portrait Gallery, London
John Chaworth, 2nd Viscount Chaworth
by Pieter Stevens van Gunst, possibly after Sir Anthony van Dyck Click on the links below to find out more
line engraving, circa 1711-1724
20 3/8 in. x 13 1/8 in. (519 mm x 334 mm) plate size; 22 1/4 in. x 16 7/8 in. (564 mm x 430 mm) paper size
Given by the daughter of compiler William Fleming MD, Mary Elizabeth Stopford (née Fleming), 1931
Queen Anne dismisses from office her closest companion, Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, over disagreements principally concerning matters of state. Sarah's husband, the Duke of Marlborough, is also dismissed, a victim of ambition and political intrigue. The South Sea Company is launched to undertake the nation's debt.
Art and science
Composer, George Frideric Handel's first London opera Rinaldo
is staged at the Queen's Theatre and privately performed for the queen on her birthday at St. James's Palace. The following year Handel would leave the Hanoverian court to settle in London. Essayists, Sir Richard Steele and Joseph Addison establish The Spectator
Secret peace negotiations between France and England resume to end the War of the Spanish Succession. Lord treasurer, Robert Harley, Earl of Oxford sends poet and diplomat, Matthew Prior, to France accompanied by Louis XIV's secret negotiator, François Gaultier, to conduct talks directly with the French king.