George II succeeded to the British throne and the electorate of Hanover on the death of his father, George I, in 1727. Born on Nov. 10, 1683, in Hanover, he remained largely Hanoverian in his interests, although,unlike his father, he learned fluent English. He visited the electorate regularly during most of his reign and sometimes utilized his position asking of England to the advantage of his German territory.
Although George has been represented as a king manipulated by his own ministers--notably Sir Robert Walpole and the duke of Newcastle--and byhis highly intelligent wife, Queen Caroline (1683-1737), he was by no means a weak monarch. He played a larger part in the direction of foreign and military policy than most contemporaries suspected, and at Dettingen (1743), in the War of the Austrian Succession, was the last British monarch to appear in person on the battlefield. His reign witnessed the final collapse of the Jacobites after their uprising of 1745 and closed with Britain's brilliant successes in the Seven Years' War (1756-63) under the leadership of William Pitt the Elder. George had long detested Pitt, but he eventually came to recognize his merits.
George's son, Frederick, predeceased him, so when George II died on Oct.25, 1760, he was succeeded by Frederick's son, George III. Although he was vulnerable to management by others, George II was undoubtedly aknowledgeable and skillful politician, within the narrow framework of Hanoverian interests in which he worked.