Parliament and Empire: Overview

Find out about Parliament's involvement in the history of the British Empire over the course of four centuries

Parliament and the American Colonies before 1765

Parliament and the American Colonies before 1765: When did Parliament first start taking an interest in the American colonies? And what were its main concerns?

The Stamp Act and the American colonies 1763-67

Read about the issues which made the Stamp Act one of the most controversial laws ever passed by Parliament

Parliament and the war in the American colonies 1767-83

Find out how the American colonists went from being loyal British subjects to citizens of an independent republic

British North America 1763-91

What lessons had Parliament learned from the American Revolution when it formed the first constitution for British North America?

The West Indian colonies and emancipation

Learn about the Parliamentary and public campaign for the abolition of the slave trade and slavery, which fuelled the economy of the British Empire

Parliament and the East India Company

How did a private trading company come to control almost all of the Indian subcontinent? And what did Parliament do about it?

The East India Company and public opinion

Learn of the public discontent about the Company’s activities in India, and how this was reflected in Parliament

East India Company and Raj 1785-1858

Discover how the British Crown came to rule the entire Indian subcontinent and its many millions of people

Government of the Raj 1858-1914

Read how a growing nationalist movement led to the first attempts to give Indian people a voice in their own government

The Raj and independence 1914-47

India and Pakistan became independent in 1947. What was Parliament's role, for good and ill, in their road to statehood?

The settler colonies: Canada

Find out how Canada became the first of the British white settler colonies to achieve self-government and eventual statehood

The settler colonies: Australia

British settlement in 19th century Australia was rapid. Read about Parliament's role in the country's self-government

The settler colonies: New Zealand

Discover Britain's role in New Zealand's self-government

The settler colonies: South Africa

Find out why settlers in southern Africa achieved self-government so late, and about the controversial union of the colonies

The settler colonies: Legislative independence

Read how Parliament's Statute of Westminster in 1931 was a turning point in relations with the Empire