Author Archives: richardjohnbr

170th Anniversary of Kennington Common meeting 10 April 1848

The National Charter Association (NCA) Executive, its funds depleted, had little control over the events in early March and found itself having to improvise to keep up with the popular mood. On 18 March, it announced that the National Petition … Continue reading

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Posted in Chartism, Narrative, Nineteenth century politics | Tagged , , ,

What were the social and economic effects of the Famine?

The ‘Great Famine’ began unexpectedly in the late summer of 1845. By September, potatoes were rotting in the ground and within a month blight was spreading rapidly. Three-quarters of the country’s crop, the chief food for some three million people … Continue reading

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Posted in Nineteenth century politics, Nineteenth century society, Sir Robert Peel | Tagged , ,

Why was Ireland so important in Peel’s career?

The Conservative victory in 1841 brought the conflict between Peel and O’Connell that had festered for twenty-years centre stage. Peel was not prepared to compromise on Repeal of the Act of Union. However, he recognised the need to build confidence … Continue reading

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Posted in Sir Robert Peel | Tagged , , ,

Why was Catholic Emancipation such a contentious issue?

The Catholic question was left unresolved by Union and until 1823 the issue stagnated. There were two main reasons why the campaign for Catholic Emancipation before the formation of the Catholic Association by Daniel O’Connell in 1823-1824 made little headway. … Continue reading

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Posted in Nineteenth century politics, Nineteenth century society, Uncategorized

Resisting tithes

Tithes were traditional payments that entitled the Church to a tenth of people’s annual income. Usually the payments were made in kind in the form of crops, wool, milk and other produce, to represent a tenth of the yearly production. … Continue reading

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Posted in Nineteenth century society, Religion | Tagged , ,

Ireland in the decade before Union

Ireland posed three problems in the period between the 1780s and the famines in the mid-1840s. First, there was the question of how Ireland should be governed. There was also the highly emotive question of the rights of the Catholic … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Nineteenth century politics | Tagged , , ,

Why did Corn Law repeal lead to the end of Peel’s government?

Relations between Peel and his backbenchers were strained from the early days of his ministry. Peel was insensitive to their interests of many Conservative MPs and made little attempt to court backbench opinion. He took the loyalty of Conservatives in … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Nineteenth century politics, Peel in power 1841-1846, Sir Robert Peel | Tagged , ,

Peel’s ministry 1841-45

Peel is credited with the Conservative victory in 1841: without his leadership, many contemporaries believed that the Tories could have been assigned to permanent opposition. Peel’s parliamentary performance during the 1830s was an important element in this revival. His grasp … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Nineteenth century politics, Sir Robert Peel | Tagged ,

Peel in the 1830s

Peel is generally recognised as the founder of modern Conservatism. He saw the need for the Tory party to adapt itself after its disastrous showing in the 1832 General Election when 175 Tory MPs were elected out of the 658 … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Nineteenth century politics, Sir Robert Peel | Tagged ,

Paradise and taxation

When Sir Vince Cable, having criticised the government for not clamping down on offshore tax havens trading under the British flag, added ‘The Paradise Papers suggest that a small number of wealthy individuals have been able, entirely legally, to put … Continue reading

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Posted in News and politics | Tagged , , ,

Treating the disabled

Throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries the policy of segregating severely disabled people into institutions slowly increased and was subsequently extended to other disadvantaged groups.[1] The term ‘institution’ can refer to a variety of social organisations but refers here to … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Health and Housing, Nineteenth century society

Coming soon

  From the introduction: The golden age of research into the Chartist Movement began in the late 1950s and came to an end in the mid-1980s. The publication of A.R. Schoyen’s The Chartist Challenge: A Portrait of George Julian Harney … Continue reading

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Posted in Chartism | Tagged , ,

Whig reforms 1832-1841

During the 1833 and 1834 sessions Lord Althorp,[1] leader of the House of Commons, showed that the energy for further reform remained strong. Although ministers sympathised with and even promoted specific bills in general, legislation to improve the condition of … Continue reading

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Posted in Nineteenth century politics, Nineteenth century society | Tagged , ,

Whigs and constitutional reform 1830-1835

The Whigs supported the idea of both parliamentary and social reform. When they came to power in late 1830, they put parliamentary reform at the centre of their political agenda and it dominated debate until the Reform Act was passed … Continue reading

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Posted in Nineteenth century politics, Nineteenth century society | Tagged , , ,

How ‘liberal’ were the Tory governments of 1822-1830?

In the early 1820s, Liverpool made important changes in his Cabinet. Canning became Foreign Secretary after Castlereagh’s suicide and Peel replaced Sidmouth at the Home Office in 1822. Robinson took the place of Vansittart at the Exchequer and Huskisson became … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Nineteenth century politics | Tagged , , ,