Princess Margaret: The man present at birth of Queen’s sister – Not King George VI | Royal | News (Reports)

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Once King James succeeded King Charles II to the throne in 1685, his wife, Mary of Modena, gave birth to a healthy son.

But opponents of the Catholic King disputed the birth, saying her child was stillborn and replaced with another child brought into the bed-chamber.

The furore eventually led Mary and her son into French exile, and James to abdicate, placing William of Orange and his wife – also named Mary – on the throne in his stead.

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After the 1888 birth, tradition dictated politicians would bear witness in the future to verify the legitimacy of a child.

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