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Fuller, William

FULLER, WILLIAM (1670-c.1717), English impostor, was born at Milton in Kent on the 20th of September 1670. His paternity is doubtful, but he was related to the family of Herbert. After 1688 he served James II.'s queen, Mary of Modena, and the Jacobites, seeking at the same time to gain favour with William III.; and after associating with Titus Oates, being imprisoned for debt and pretending to reveal Jacobite plots, the House of Commons in 1692 declared he was an "imposter, cheat and false accuser." Having stood in the pillory he was again imprisoned until 1695, when he was released; and at this time he took the opportunity to revive the old and familiar story that Mary of Modena was not the mother of the prince of Wales. In 1701 he published his autobiographical Life of William Fuller and some Original Letters of the late King James. Unable to prove the assertions made in his writings he was put in the pillory, whipped and fined. He died, probably in prison, about 1717. Fuller's other writings are Mr William Fuller's trip to Bridewell, with a full account of his barbarous usage in the pillory; The sincere and hearty confession of Mr William Fuller (1704); and An humble appeal to the impartial judgment of all parties in Great Britain (1716).

He must be distinguished from William Fuller (1608-1675), dean of St Patrick's (1660), bishop of Limerick (1663), and bishop of Lincoln (1667), the friend of Samuel Pepys; and also from William Fuller (c.1580-1659), dean of Ely and later dean of Durham.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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