(Episode 2) George III: Why Can't We Have Nice Things?

King George III—aka, George William Frederick, aka “G3”—was the longest ruling British Monarch before Queen Victoria. You probably know him more colloquially as “that guy who lost the American colonies.” That’s right: this poor guy’s arguably greatest claim to fame1 is that the American Revolution happened while he was in charge. Womp womp.

G3 played a pivotal role in the ultimate founding of America. Did you realize that the Declaration of Independence is directed at him? And that the Declaration’s list of grievances outlines the colonists’ specific problems with his rule? Since G3 is at the center of all this, it seemed appropriate to talk about him before we get to the Declaration of Independence (which we’ll discuss in Episode 3).

We wanted to learn more about G3 as a person, about his life, and about the context surrounding his decisions as the King of England. How and when did he come to power? What was he like? What went wrong with his handling of the American colonies? Is he really to blame? And, most importantly2what would he be like on Twitter?

In episode 2 of IYCKI, we explore G3’s background, decisions, and reputation, and we discuss some of the major events leading up to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence. To get more in-depth information, check out some of the resources we relied on for our discussion, including:

1 Or, it could be that he provided funding for the creation of a 40-foot telescope that was used by William Herschel to discover Uranus, and Uranus was original named “Georgium sidus” (“Georgian Star”) after G3. There’s looking at the bright side, eh?

2 Kidding, of course. The most important thing is the fact that his urine might’ve been blue. For more on that, give Episode 2 a listen.