The Duke of YorkThe title Duke of York is normally awarded to the reigning monarchs second son - at the moment it's Prince Andrew Windsor (aka "Randy Andy" or "Air Miles Andy").
However this particular Duke of York was James the younger brother of Charles II who later acceded to the throne as James II upon the death of his brother.
James II & VII (14 October 1633 - 16 September 1701) was King of England and King of Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685. He was the last Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland.
However, Britain's political and religious leaders opposed him as too pro-French, too pro-Catholic, and too much of an absolute monarch. When he produced a Catholic heir (James Francis Edward Stuart) these leaders called on William III of Orange (James' son-in-law and nephew) to invade with an army from the Netherlands.
James fled from England (and thus abdicated) in the Glorious Revolution of 1688.
He was replaced by William of Orange who became king as William III, ruling jointly with his wife Mary II (James II's daughter). William and Mary (both Protestants) became joint rulers in 1689.
James made one serious attempt to recover his crowns, when he landed in Ireland in 1689 but, after the defeat of the Jacobite forces by the Williamite forces at the Battle of the Boyne in the summer of 1690, James returned to France. He lived out the rest of his life as a pretender at a court sponsored by his cousin and ally, King Louis XIV.
Amazingly, since the second creation of the title in 1474, not one of the holders of the title Duke of York has ever passed the title on. They either died without male heirs or became King themselves - and the current one has 2 daughters.
Absolute monarchy is a monarchical form of government where the monarch exercises ultimate governing authority as head of state and head of government, thus wielding political power over the sovereign state and its subject peoples. In an absolute monarchy, the transmission of power is two-fold; hereditary and marital. As absolute governor, the monarch's authority is not legally bound or restricted by a constitution - i.e. rules and regulations do not apply to them and they answer to no one - except their God.
Did you know?
James II's son James Francis Edward Stuart (10 June 1688 - 1 January 1766) known as the old pretender was the father of Charles Edward Stuart (31 December 1720 - 31 January 1788) - better known as Bonnie Prince Charlie - the young pretender. This could lead us onto the Jacobite rebellions of 1715 and 1745.