Originally Posted by CyrilVladisla
Why did King George I have little interest in the domestic affairs of England?After all, he had succeeded Queen Anne as sovereign.
George was German. He was 54 years old when he came to the throne. He was 50 when he was made heir to the throne. George spoke very little English, believed almost none at first, and had to converse with his ministers in French. He eventually stopped attending cabinet meetings and just meeting in private, which led to lessening of power of his cabinet.
It wasn't really a matter that he had NO interest. He had interest, he simply lacked power or will power. He was used to Hannover where he was absolute monarch and his word was law. In GB he had to contend with parliament. While he was strong and quite effective in foreign policy, helping lead GB in foreign alliances, he crumbled under pressure from his ministers in domestic policy. With his son and heir joining the opposition, he found himself unable to stand up to the likes of Walpole. Its not that he didn't have a desire to change domestic policy, just not the will power.
Its sharp contrast to Hannover. In GB where he was seen as cold and unintelligent by many, in Hannover it was very different. He was considered a very progressive leader, one who was a great supporter of the enlightenment. He offered sanctuary to Voltaire, and he allowed public criticism without censoring it.