Herbert Henry Asquith (1852-1928)

Herbert Henry Asquith (1852-1928)
  • Title: Photograph of H. H. Asquith

  • Date : 1886 - 1890

  • Catalogue number : Parliamentary Archives, PHO/4/2/2

  • Description :

    Born in Yorkshire to a middle-class Liberal family, Asquith graduated from Oxford University to start a career as a barrister in 1876.  In 1886, Asquith’s interest in politics saw him successfully stand for election as a Member of Parliament for East Fife.  Asquith made a positive impression upon Gladstone and was promoted to Home Secretary in 1892; Chancellor of the Exchequer in 1905; and Prime Minister in 1908, succeeding Campbell-Bannerman.  Asquith’s government was responsible for constitutional changes within British politics including Lloyd George's 'People’s Budget' in 1909 and the Parliament Act 1911 which limited the powers of the House of Lords in passing legislation.  Before the outbreak of the First World War Asquith introduced the Government of Ireland Act 1914, but later proved ineffectual as a war-time leader and resigned in 1916.  Following the loss of his seat in the 1918 general election Asquith remained the leader of the Liberal Party, was elected to represent Paisley in 1920 and became Earl of Oxford and Asquith in 1925.

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