- George IV, who served as prince regent from 1811 to 1820 (see Regency)before succeeding his father, George III, to the throne, brought thestanding of the British monarchy lower than at any other time in itsmodern history. Born on Aug. 12, 1762, he consorted as a young man withhis father's parliamentary opponents, including Charles James Fox. In1785 he illegally married Mrs. Maria Fitzherbert. He subsequently deniedthe marriage in order to secure Parliament's payment of his debts, and in1795 he married Princess Caroline of Brunswick, whom he later attemptedto divorce on his accession as king. Although long an ally of the Whigs,he declined to bring them into power when he became regent, and he wasthereafter associated with deeply conservative causes, especially themaintenance of official discrimination against Roman Catholics andProtestant dissenters. His personal profligacy and his treatment of QueenCaroline brought him great unpopularity. He spent extravagant sums on thearts. Some of the richest portions of the royal collection and, aboveall, the Royal Pavilion at Brighton remain as monuments to his culturalinterests. He died on June 26, 1830, and was succeeded by his brother,William IV.