Lord Colin Campbell

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Lord Colin Campbell (1890)
Lady Colin Campbell (1897)
by Giovanni Boldini

Lord Colin Campbell (9 March 1853 – 18 June 1895) was a Scottish Liberal politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1878 to 1885.

Campbell was the fifth son of George Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll, and his wife Lady Elizabeth Georgiana, daughter of George Sutherland-Leveson-Gower, 2nd Duke of Sutherland.[1] He was educated at Eton College, St Andrews University and Trinity College, Cambridge. He entered Middle Temple in 1875 and was a lieutenant in the 2nd Argyll Rifle Volunteers.[2] He entered Parliament for Argyllshire in 1878, a seat he held until 1885.[3] A number of Campbell's constituents became disenchanted with him, adopting a parody of a traditional song about the Campbell family: "But their aim, and their claim, which are one and the same,/Are founded in falsehoods of sand, you know./The Campbells are cunning, oho, oho .."[4] One consequence of Campbell's unpopularity was that his brother, the Marquess of Lorne, Queen Victoria's son-in-law, who had previously been MP for Argyllshire and was seeking to return to politics after a spell as Governor-General of Canada, felt compelled to find a seat outside Scotland. He stood as Liberal candidate for Hampstead in 1885, but lost.[5]

Campbell died in Bombay at the age of 42.[6]

Campbell married Gertrude Elizabeth Blood (born 1857), daughter of Irish landowner Edmund Maghlin Blood, in 1881. They had no children and were separated in 1884 with an acrimonious legal battle in 1886, resulting in Gertrude's being denied a divorce. The notorious trial involved accusations of adultery from both sides, and visits by the jury to the Campbell's London home at 79 Cadogan Place to verify testimony about what the butler saw through a keyhole of Lady Campbell's encounters with other men. The couple remained married until Lord Colin's death in 1895 from syphilis; during the marriage he had also infected his wife with the disease.[7]

Gertrude Elizabeth became a well-known socialite, writer and wit. She died in November 1911.[8]

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Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
The Marquess of Lorne
Member of Parliament for Argyllshire
1878–1885
Succeeded by
Donald Horne Macfarlane