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General George Wade


1673 - 1748

British soldier, who was born in Ireland and employed after the Jacobite rebellion of 1715 to construct a system of metalled military roads and associated stone bridges throughout the Scottish Highlands. In 1732, he was appointed as Governor of Berwick-upon-Tweed. Wade became a Privy Councillor and Lieutenant-General in 1742, and a Field-Marshal in 1743. As Commander-in-Chief of the Army, he was criticised during the 1745 Jacobite Rebellion for failing to intercept the forces of Prince Charles Edward Stuart (1720-88) as they advanced south to Derby and he was soon replaced by Prince William Augustus Hanover, the Duke of Cumberland (1721-65). At this time, his name featured in a controversial additional verse of the British National Anthem:

Lord, grant that Marshal Wade,
May by thy mighty aid,
Victory bring.
May he sedition hush,
and like a torrent rush,
Rebellious Scots to crush,
God save the King.

However, Wade is best remembered for around 250 miles / 400 km of roads and forty bridges he created, much improving communications in the Highlands. He is buried in Westminster Abbey (London).


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