Robert Walpole

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The Yerl o Orford

Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford by Arthur Pond.jpg
Prime Meenister o Great Breetain
In office
4 Aprile 1721 – 11 Februar 1742
MonarchGeorge I
George II
Precedit biOffice creatit
Succeedit biThe Yerl o Wilmington
Chancellor o the Exchequer
In office
4 Aprile 1727 – 12 Februar 1740
Precedit biSir John Pratt
Succeedit biSamuel Sandys
In office
12 October 1715 – 15 April 1717
Precedit biSir Richard Onslow, Bt
Succeedit biThe Viscount Stanhope
Personal details
Born26 August 1676(1676-08-26)
Houghton, Norfolk, Ingland
Dee'd18 Mairch 1745(1745-03-18) (aged 68)
St James's, Middlesex, Great Breetain
NaitionalityInglis/Breetish
Poleetical pairtyWhig
Spoose(s)Catherine (1700–37)
Maria (1738)
Bairns6
Alma materKeeng's College, Cambridge
ProfessionStatesman,
Scholar
ReligionKirk o Ingland
Signatur

Robert Walpole, 1st Yerl o Orford KG KB PC (26 August 1676 – 18 Mairch 1745), kent afore 1742 as Sir Robert Walpole, wis a Breetish statesman that is generally regairdit as the first Prime Meenister o Great Breetain.

Awtho the exact dates o Walpole's dominance, dubbed the "Robinocracy",[1] are a maiter o scholarly debate, the period 1721–1742 is eften uised. He dominatit the Walpole–Townshend meenistry, as weel as the subsequent Walpole meenistry, and haulds the record as the langest-servin Breetish prime meenister in history. W. A. Speck wrat that Walpole's uninterruptit rin o 20 years as Prime Meenister "is richtly regairdit as ane o the major feats o Breetish poleetical history... Explanations are uisually offered in terms o his expert haundlin o the poleetical seestem efter 1720, an his unique blendin o the survivin pouers o the croun wi the increasin influence o the Commons".[2]

He wis a Whig frae the gentles cless that wis first electit tae Pairlament in 1701 an held mony senior poseetions. He wis a kintra squire an leukit tae kintra gentlemen for his poleetical base. Historian Frank O'Gorman says his leadership in Pairlament reflected his "raisonable an perswasive oratory, his abeelity tae muive baith the emotions as weel as the mynds o men, an, abuin aw, his by-ordinar sel-confidence".[3] Hoppit says Walpole's policies socht moderation: he wirkit for peace, lawer taxes an growin exports an alloued a little mair tolerance for Protestant Dissenters. He maistly avydit controversy an heich-intensity disputes as his middle wey attractit moderates frae baith the Whig an Tory camps, [4] but his appointment tae Chancellor o the Exchequer efter the Sooth Sea Bubble stock-mercat creesis drew attention tae a perceived pertection o poleetical allies bi Walpole.[5]

H. T. Dickinson sums up his historical role bi sayin that "Walpole wis ane o the greatest politeecians in Breetish history. He played a signeeficant role in susteenin the Whig pairty, safegairdin the Hanoverian succession, an defendin the principles o the Glorious Revolution (1688)....He established a stable poleetical supremacy for the Whig pairty an tocht succeedin meenisters hou best tae establish an effective wirkin relationship atween Croun an Pairlament".[6] Scholarts rank him heichly amang aw Breetish prime meenisters. [7]

References[eedit | eedit soorce]

  1. "Robinocracy". OxfordDictionaries.com. OUP. 
  2. W. A. Speck, Stability and Strife: England 1714–1760 (1977) p. 203
  3. Frank O'Gorman, The Long Eighteenth Century: British Political and Social History 1688–1832 (1997), p. 71
  4. Julian Hoppit, A Land of Liberty? England 1689–1727 (2000) p. 410
  5. "Sir Robert Walpole (Whig, 1721-1742) - History of government". history.blog.gov.uk (in Inglis). Retrieved 2018-09-10. 
  6. H. T. Dickinson, "Walpole, Sir Robert", in David Loads, editor, Reader's Guide to British History (2003) p. 1338
  7. Paul Strangio; Paul 't Hart; James Walter (2013). Understanding Prime-Ministerial Performance: Comparative Perspectives. Oxford UP. p. 225.