The Life of Sir William Harcourt

The Life of Sir William Harcourt

The Life of Sir William Harcourt

The Life of Sir William Harcourt

Excerpt

Position of the Dissentient Liberals--Chamberlain's attitude--An encounter with Speaker Peel--Future of Land Purchase-- Parnell's Tenants' Relief Bill--Party Conference at Leeds-- Towards reconciliation with Chamberlain.

THE great overthrow which the new Irish policy had sustained at the General Election of July 1886 seemed, on a superficial view, final and irrevocable. That impression was strengthened by the fact that, but for the unrivalled prestige of Gladstone, the overthrow would have been even more decisive. The position of the Parnellites as the balancing factor in the House of Commons had gone with the suddenness and completeness of a snowfall in May. Leaving aside the Liberal Unionists, the Conservatives alone had a substantial majority over Gladstonians and Parnellites combined, and with the Liberal Unionists a crushing superiority. But the situation was not so simple as these first obvious considerations suggested. Much water was to flow under the bridges before the Liberal Unionists were to be severed from their Liberal affiliations and to become an indistinguishable element of the Conservative Party. On general policy they were still Liberals, and even on the Irish question many of them had as much distaste for coercion as they had for Home Rule. The new party attachments were ad hoc and experimental, and it remained to be seen whether they could bear the strain which events would put upon them. Salisbury, who at Gladstone's suggestion had been sent for by the Queen, was acutely sensible of the delicacy and difficulties of the . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.