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Although now a single kingdom, certain aspects of the former independent kingdoms remained separate, as agreed in the terms in the Treaty of Union.

Scottish and English law remained separate, as did the Presbyterian Church of Scotland and the Anglican Church of England.

A more peace-minded government came to power in Great Britain, and the treaties of Utrecht and Rastadt in 1713–1714 ended the war. Queen Anne died in 1714, and the Elector of Hanover, George Louis, became king as George I (1714–1727).

With the defeat by the United States, France and others in the War of American Independence, Britain lost its 13 American colonies and rebuilt its second British Empire based in Asia and Africa.The cost was high and Britain no longer had the wealth to maintain an empire, so it granted independence to almost all its possessions.The new states typically joined the Commonwealth of Nations.The terms of the union had been negotiated the previous year, and laid out in the Treaty of Union.The parliaments of Scotland and of England then each ratified the treaty via respective Acts of Union.The Act of Union 1800 added the Kingdom of Ireland to create the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.

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