A Treasonous Toast (see photo of wine glass

 To mark the Millennium numerous mementos were produced, many of which are now probably lost or consigned to attics. I have a wine glass engraved with the year 2000, produced for the purpose of toasting the event.  The Treasonous Toast I refer to, would have been one using glasses produced in the eighteenth century, each one engraved with an oak leaf, a rose and a blazing star. The design alone was very pleasing, but was also a code denoting the House of Stuart (by the oak leaf), the Heir Charles Stuart (by the rose) and the hope that the Stuart monarchy would be restored, like a blazing star.
The proponents of such a toast were Jacobites, supporters of King James 11, who, after his death in 1701, transferred their loyalty to his son Charles.  Jacobites were disparate groups of people united in their desire for restitution of a Stuart monarchy.  Some felt on principle that the deposition of an anointed king was wrong.
The manner of toasting was itself a code. When they raised a glass to the king , they held it over a finger bowl on the table, symbolising a toast made to the king exiled overseas.  Charles Stuart was brought up in Italy, but returned to Scotland to take up the Stuart cause in 1745. After some success, he was defeated at the Battle of Culloden and fled the country, escaping to the Isle of Skye.  Lack of support from France for further military endeavours, meant that this was in reality the end of Jacobite hopes.
   After 1745, it was actually deemed treason to raise these glasses in a toast. No doubt though in private clubs and secret meetings, a glass or two, continued to be raised for some time to come, in a treasonous toast.

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