The second chapter traces the friendship of Godolphin and Marlborough through the reign of William and Mary. Godolphin gains experience in working with Parliament to finance a major European war, but Marlborough and William are soon at loggerheads. Mary’s premature death in 1694, leaving Anne heir to the throne, and the marriage of Godolphin’s only son to Marlborough’s eldest daughter under Anne’s auspices in 1698 cements their friendship and commitment to Anne. But the deaths at the end of the century of Anne’s only son, Carlos II of Spain, King James, and finally William, make another European war inevitable over the rival claims of the Bourbons and the Habsburgs to the Spanish empire, with the British succession dependent on the outcome. Marlborough succeeds to William’s leadership of the Grand Alliance, but Godolphin resigns over William’s dying conviction that only the Whigs, not the Tories will support the war.
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