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A Plague of InformersConspiracy and Political Trust in William III's England$
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Rachel Weil

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780300171044

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300171044.001.0001

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“A Tool with so Devilish an Edge”

“A Tool with so Devilish an Edge”

Government Officials and Political Informers in the 1690s

Chapter:
(p.104) Chapter 3 “A Tool with so Devilish an Edge”
Source:
A Plague of Informers
Author(s):

Rachel Weil

Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300171044.003.0004

This chapter examines the interplay of politics and intelligence in the 1690s, describing the structures and personalities relevant to the gathering of intelligence and showing how the conditions of this work were shaped by political circumstances. It shows why government officials found it hard to obtain reliable intelligence, and why the validity of intelligence might itself become an object of political struggle. It explores the relations between secretaries of state and particular informers, and the way those relationships were affected by and in turn affected the wider political landscape.

Keywords:   Williamite regime, informants, intelligence, secretaries of state, politics

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