Bonar Law

Life
1858-1923 (André Bonar Law); Conservative and Unionist politician; b. New Brunswick, his father having been born in Coleraine, Co. Derry; raised Glasgow by mothers relations from 11; entered bank and junior-partnered in iron merchants; Blackfriars and Hutchestown Unionist MP, 1900-06; Dulwich MP, 1906; supported Joseph, and later Austen Chamberlain in schemes for colonial, tariff and fiscal reform; denounced Lloyd George’s budget as socialism ‘pure and unadulterated’; Dulwich MP, 1910; failed to capture Manchester; Bootle, Lancashire bye-election, 1911; with Carson led opposition of Home Rule in Conservative party to brink of civil war; insignificant post of secretary for colonies, May 1915; led group pressing for evacuation of the Dardenelles; successfully negotiated strong cabinet under Lloyd George, calling it the ‘most Andrew most perfect partnership in political history’; issued War Loans on long term lower interest rate, one of the greatest achievements in the history of British finance [ODNB], and provided continuous flow of money to end of war through confidence in bonds; various offices up to signatory of Versailles treaty; resigned in March 1921, but came out of retirement to recommend Anglo-Irish treaty; prime minister of Conservative Government and leader of party, Oct. 1922; programme of negation as best means of achieving national recovering; presided over reparations conferences; reluctantly accepted US demands regarding British debt, Jan. 1923; resigned May 1923. ODNB

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Criticism
R[alph] J[ames] Q. Adams, Bonar Law (London: John Murray 1999), xvii, 458pp., 16 pls.

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