Spying for the Crown: British intelligence in the Georgian era

The Historic Interpreter

jamesbond99

“It is only the enlightened ruler and the wise general who will use the highest intelligence of the army for the purposes of spying, and thereby they achieve great results.  Spies are a most important element in war, because on them depends an army’s ability to move.”  – Sun Tzu

No war can be conducted successfully without early and good intelligence.” – John Churchill, The first Duke of Marlborough

Background

Intelligence activities at the national level first developed during the middle ages in diplomatic circles, with espionage being one of the fundamental duties of ambassadors and envoys.  The first English monarch known to place a heavy emphasis on espionage was Henry VII, who in the late fifteenth century employed agents to track the activities of his enemies both domestically and abroad.  Prior to assuming the throne, it was only through employment of personal agents that Henry avoided death…

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