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Bonar Law
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Joseph Chamberlain
(Politics)
Ireland
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University of Glasgow
(Education)
Scotland
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Arthur Balfour

Knowledge Identifier: +Arthur_Balfour

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Arthur Balfour

British Conservative politician and statesman add

Category: Politics

Born in 1848.

Countries: United Kingdom (63%), Ireland (9%), (7%)

Main connections: Bonar Law, Joseph Chamberlain, Ireland

Linked to: Conservative Party, Leaders of the Conservative Party, Liberal Party, University of Cambridge

 

Timeline


 

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Arthur Balfour was born in 1848 add something


1874

Born in Scotland and educated as a philosopher, Balfour first entered parliament in the 1874 general election add something

 

In 1874 he was elected Conservative Member of Parliament for Hertford and represented that constituency until 1885 add something


1878

In the spring of 1878 Balfour became Private Secretary to his uncle, Lord Salisbury add something


1880

Released from his duties as private secretary by the general election of 1880, he began to take a more active part in parliamentary affairs add something


1881

He was made an honorary Doctor of Laws of the University of Edinburgh in 1881, of the University of St Andrews in 1885, of the University of Cambridge in 1888, and of the Universities of Dublin and Glasgow in 1891, and an honorary Doctor of Civil Law of the University of Oxford in 1891 add something


1885

In 1885, Lord Salisbury appointed Balfour as President of the Local Government Board; the following year he became Secretary for Scotland, with a seat in the cabinet add something

 

William Walrond, 1st Baron Waleran - Walrond served as a Junior Lord of the Treasury from 1885 to 1886 under Lord Salisbury, and from 1886 to 1892 under Salisbury and under Arthur Balfour


1886

He was Lord Rector of the University of St Andrews in 1886 and of the University of Glasgow in 1890, Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh in 1891, and a member of the Senate of the University of London in 1888; add something

 

Schomberg Kerr, 9th Marquess of Lothian - In 1886 he was sworn of the Privy Council and the following year he succeeded Arthur Balfour as Secretary for Scotland and Vice-President of the Scottish Education Department in Lord Salisbury's Conservative administration

 

Conservative Party (UK) - In 1886 the party formed an alliance with Lord Hartington and Joseph Chamberlain's new Liberal Unionist Party and, under the statesmen Lord Salisbury and Arthur Balfour, held power for all but three of the following twenty years before suffering a heavy defeat in 1906 when it split over the issue of free trade


1887

In early 1887, Sir Michael Hicks Beach, the Chief Secretary for Ireland, resigned because of illness and Salisbury appointed his nephew in his place add something


1890

Balfour broadened the basis of material prosperity to the less well off by creating the Congested Districts Board for Ireland in 1890 add something

 

Robert Windsor-Clive, 1st Earl of Plymouth - Plymouth served under Lord Salisbury as Paymaster General between 1890 and 1892 and under Arthur Balfour as First Commissioner of Works between 1902 and 1905 and was sworn of the Privy Council in 1891


1892

After the fall of the government in 1892 he spent three years in opposition add something


1893

Society for Psychical Research - In 1893, the year that Arthur Balfour was president of the SPR the author Arthur Conan Doyle joined the society


1895

When the Conservatives returned to power, in a coalition with the Liberal Unionists, in 1895, Balfour once again assumed the positions of Leader of the House and First Lord of the Treasury add something

 

University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology - A new building was begun in 1895 and opened by the Prime Minister Arthur Balfour in October 1902

 

David Lindsay, 27th Earl of Crawford - Crawford was elected Member of Parliament for Chorley in 1895 and served as a Junior Lord of the Treasury from 1903 to 1905 under Arthur Balfour

 

Sidney Herbert, 14th Earl of Pembroke - He continued his political career in the House of Lords as Lord Steward of the Household under Salisbury and Arthur Balfour between 1895 and 1905


1896

His leadership of the House of Commons was marked by considerable firmness in the suppression of obstruction, yet there was a slight revival of the criticisms of 1896 add something

 

His management of the abortive education proposals of 1896 were thought to show a disinclination for the continuous drudgery of parliamentary management, yet he had the satisfaction of seeing the passage of a bill providing Ireland with an improved system of local government, and took an active role in the debates on the various foreign and domestic questions that came before parliament between 1895 to 1900 add something


1898

During the illness of Lord Salisbury in 1898, and again in Lord Salisbury's absence abroad, Balfour was put in charge of the Foreign Office, and it was his job to conduct the critical negotiations with Russia on the question of railways in North China add something


1899

As a member of the cabinet responsible for the Transvaal negotiations in 1899, he bore his full share of controversy and, when the war began disastrously, he was the first to realise the need to put the full military strength of the country into the field add something


1900

James Gascoyne-Cecil, 4th Marquess of Salisbury - He served under his father and his cousin Arthur Balfour as Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs from 1900 to 1903 and under Balfour as Lord Privy Seal from 1903 to 1905 and as President of the Board of Trade in 1905


1902

Balfour succeeded his uncle Lord Salisbury as Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader in July 1902 add something

 

On Lord Salisbury's resignation on 11 July 1902, Balfour succeeded him as Prime Minister, with the approval of all sections of the Unionist party add something

 

Henry Forster, 1st Baron Forster - Financial Secretary to the War Office - He served as a Lord of the Treasury from 1902 to 1905 in the Conservative Government of Arthur Balfour and as Financial Secretary to the War Office from 1915 to 1919 in the wartime coalition government

 

John Henry Reynolds (educator) - A grant from the Whitworth Institute enabled him to realise his ambitions for a state-of-the-art institution with the construction of the existing buildings on Sackville Street, opened in 1902 by Arthur Balfour

 

Andrew Murray, 1st Viscount Dunedin - He remained as Lord Advocate when Arthur Balfour became Prime Minister in 1902, but the following year he succeeded Lord Balfour of Burleigh as Secretary for Scotland, with a seat in the cabinet

 

Savile Crossley, 1st Baron Somerleyton - In 1902 he was appointed Paymaster-General in the Conservative government of Arthur Balfour and was admitted to the Privy Council in December of the same year


1903

With Balfour's agreement, Chamberlain resigned from the Cabinet in late 1903 to stump the country in favour of Tariff Reform add something

 

Leo Chiozza Money - These were timely given the increasingly fervent political and public debate about Imperial Preference, a cause which led Joseph Chamberlain to resign from Arthur Balfour's Conservative government in 1903


1904

In foreign affairs, Balfour and his Foreign Secretary, Lord Lansdowne presided over a dramatic improvement in relations with France, culminating in the Entente cordiale of 1904 add something


1905

By 1905 relatively few Unionist MPs were still free traders , but Balfour's long balancing act had drained his authority within the government add something

 

As Prime Minister, Balfour oversaw such events as the Entente Cordiale, but his party was split over tariff reform and in December 1905 he relinquished power to the Liberals add something

 

Balfour eventually resigned as Prime Minister in December 1905, hoping in vain that the Liberal leader Campbell-Bannerman would be unable to form a strong government add something

 

George Curzon, 1st Marquess Curzon of Kedleston - Arthur Balfour's refusal to recommend an earldom for Curzon in 1905 was repeated by Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman, the Liberal Prime Minister, who formed his government the day after Curzon returned to England

 

Bonar Law - Despite Law's efforts to forge consensus within the Conservatives, Balfour was unable to hold the two sides of his party together, and resigned in December 1905


1906

Numerous pieces of legislation were vetoed or altered by amendments between 1906 and 1909, leading David Lloyd George to remark that the Lords had become "not the watchdog of the Constitution, but Mr. Balfour's poodle add something

 

After the disaster of 1906 Balfour remained party leader, his position strengthened by Joseph Chamberlain's removal from active politics after his stroke in July 1906, but he was unable to make much headway against the huge Liberal majority in the House of Commons add something

 

Bonar Law - Balfour had been becoming increasingly unpopular as Leader of the Conservative Party since the 1906 general election; tariff reformers saw his leadership as the reason for their electoral losses, and the "free fooders" had been alienated by Balfour's attempts to tame the zeal of the tariff reform faction

 

Liberal Unionist Party - Indeed, for a short period in early 1906, Chamberlain was the de facto leader of the Unionist alliance in the House of Commons, as the Conservative party leader, and former Prime Minister, Arthur Balfour had lost his seat in the election


1910

After the Unionists had failed to win an electoral mandate at either of the General Elections of 1910 , the Unionist peers split to allow the Parliament Act to pass the House of Lords, in order to prevent a mass-creation of new Liberal peers by the new King, George V. The exhausted Balfour resigned as party leader after the crisis, and was succeeded in late 1911 by Andrew Bonar Law add something


1911

The issue was eventually forced by the Liberals with Lloyd George's so-called People's Budget, provoking the constitutional crisis that eventually led to the Parliament Act 1911, which replaced the Lords' veto authority with a greatly reduced power to only delay bills for up to two years add something

 

He continued as Leader of the Opposition throughout the crisis over the Lloyd George People's Budget and the Parliament Act of 1911, but after failing to win either of the two General Elections in 1910 he resigned as leader in November 1911 add something

 

Bonar Law - On the coronation of George V on 22 June 1911, Bonar Law was made a Privy Counsellor on the recommendation of the new Prime Minister and Arthur Balfour

 

Bonar Law - Leo Maxse began a Balfour Must Go campaign in his paper the "National Review", and by July 1911 Balfour was contemplating resignation

 

Bonar Law - By November 1911 it was accepted that Balfour was likely to resign, with the main competitors being Law, Carson, Walter Long and Austen Chamberlain


1915

Balfour remained an important figure within the party, however, and when the Unionists joined Asquith's coalition government in May 1915, Balfour succeeded Winston Churchill as First Lord of the Admiralty add something

 

Percy Scott - In September 1915, following a Zeppelin raid on London, Scott was tasked by the First Lord, Arthur Balfour to establish the London Air Defence Area to defend London from the increasing threat of air attack


1916

When Asquith's government collapsed in December 1916, Balfour, who seemed for a time a potential successor to the premiership, became Foreign Secretary in Lloyd George's new administration, but was not actually included in the small War Cabinet, and was frequently left out of the inner workings of the government add something


1917

Balfour Declaration of 1917 - Balfour's service as Foreign Secretary was most notable for the issuance of the Balfour Declaration of 1917, a letter to Lord Rothschild promising the Jews a "national home" in Palestine, part of the Ottoman Empire add something

 

In this post, he authored the Balfour Declaration of 1917, supporting the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, and for which his name perhaps remains best known today add something

 

Chaim Weizmann - Balfour Declaration of 1917 - The importance of Weizmann's work to the ongoing war effort encouraged Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour to issue the Balfour Declaration of 1917 in support of Weizmann's Zionist objectives as Weizmann ascended to the presidency of the British Zionist Federation

 

Chaim Weizmann - In 1917, he became president of the British Zionist Federation; he worked with Arthur Balfour to obtain the milestone Balfour Declaration, which stated in part that the British government "views with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people


1919

Balfour resigned as Foreign Secretary following the Versailles Conference in 1919, but continued in the government as Lord President of the Council add something

 

Jean Monnet - Due to his contributions to the war effort, Monnet, at the age of thirty-one, was named Deputy Secretary General of the League of Nations by French premier Georges Clemenceau and British statesman Arthur Balfour, upon the League's creation in 1919

 

Georges Clemenceau - On 19 February 1919, during the Paris Peace Conference, as Clemenceau was leaving his house in the Rue Franklin to drive to a meeting with House and Balfour at the Crillon, a man jumped out and fired several shots at the car


1920

In the late 1920s he served as an elder statesman in the second government of Stanley Baldwin add something


1922

Balfour retired from the House of Commons at the 1922 general election, and was granted an Earldom add something

 

In 1922 Balfour was created Earl of Balfour add something

 

In 1922 he, along with most of the Conservative leadership, resigned with Lloyd George's government following the Conservative back-bench revolt against the continuance of the coalition add something


1924

Balfour was again not initially included in Stanley Baldwin's second government in 1924, but in 1925 he once again returned to the Cabinet, serving in place of the late Lord Curzon as Lord President of the Council until the government ended in 1929 add something


1928

Apart from a number of colds and occasional influenza, Balfour had enjoyed good health until the year 1928, and remained until a regular tennis player add something

 

At the end of 1928 most of his teeth had to be removed and he began to suffer from the unremitting circulatory trouble which ended his life add something

 

Source, notes of David Hunter Miller, pg 183, Vol I, The Drafting of the Covenant, 1928, Putnam add something


1929

In the past he had suffered from occasional bouts of phlebitis and by late 1929 he was immobilised by it add something

 

Late in January 1929 Balfour was conveyed from Whittingehame to Fisher's Hill, his brother Gerald's home near Woking, Surrey add something


Arthur Balfour died in 1930 add something

 

Finally, soon after receiving a visit from his friend Chaim Weizmann, Balfour died at Fisher's Hill on 19 March 1930 add something


1962

In 1962, Oxford writer C. S. Lewis told "Christian Century" that "Theism and Humanism" was one of the ten books that most influenced his thought add something


1970

University of Glasgow - In the past, this position has been a largely honorary and ceremonial one, and has been held by political figures including William Gladstone, Benjamin Disraeli, Andrew Bonar Law, Robert Peel, Raymond Poincaré, Arthur Balfour, and 1970s union activist Jimmy Reid, and latterly by celebrities such as TV presenters Arthur Montford and Johnny Ball, musician Pat Kane, and actors Richard Wilson, Ross Kemp and Greg Hemphill


2011

His sister-in-law Lady Betty Balfour spoke to Churchill that her brother was to speak for this policy, and met the Prime Minister in a 2011 delegation of the women's movements respresenting the Conservative and Unionist Women's Franchise Association add something