Spencer Horatio Walpole

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The Right Honourable
Spencer Horatio Walpole
QC LLD
Spencer Horatio Walpole.JPG
Home Secretary
In office
27 February 1852 – 19 December 1852
Monarch Victoria
Prime Minister The Earl of Derby
Preceded by Sir George Grey, Bt
Succeeded by The Viscount Palmerston
In office
26 February 1858 – 3 March 1859
Monarch Victoria
Prime Minister The Earl of Derby
Preceded by Sir George Grey, Bt
Succeeded by Thomas H. Sotheron-Estcourt
In office
6 July 1866 – 17 May 1867
Monarch Victoria
Prime Minister The Earl of Derby
Preceded by Sir George Grey, Bt
Succeeded by Gathorne Hardy
Personal details
Born 11 September 1806 (2014-12-19UTC06:07:37)
Died 22 May 1898(1898-05-22) (aged 91)
Nationality British
Political party Whig
Conservative
Spouse(s) Isabella Perceval (d. 1886)
Alma mater Trinity College, Cambridge

Spencer Horatio Walpole, QC, LLD (11 September 1806–22 May 1898) was a British Conservative politician who served three times as Home Secretary in the administrations of Lord Derby.

Background and education[edit]

Walpole was the second son of Thomas Walpole and Lady Margaret Perceval, youngest daughter of the 2nd Earl of Egmont and sister of Prime Minister Spencer Perceval. His great-grandfather was the diplomat the 1st Baron Walpole, younger brother of Prime Minister the 1st Earl of Orford. Walpole was educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge.[1] He chose law as his profession, and was called to the Bar, Lincoln's Inn, in 1831. He built up a successful practice and was made a Queen's Counsel in 1846.

Political career[edit]

Walpole then turned to politics, and in 1846 he was elected to Parliament for Midhurst as a Tory, a seat he would hold until 1856. He quickly gained a reputation in the House of Commons, and when the Tories came to power in early 1852 under Lord Derby, Walpole was appointed Home Secretary in the so-called "Who? Who? Ministry". He was admitted to the Privy Council at the same time. However, the government fell already in December 1852.

In 1856 Walpole was elected to Parliament for Cambridge University. Two years later the Tories (or the Conservatives as they became known during the 1850s) returned to office under Lord Derby. Walpole was again appointed Home Secretary, but resigned in January 1859 after disagreements over electoral reforms. The government was dismissed in July the same year. The Conservatives remained out of office for seven years, but in 1866 they again came to power under Derby, who made Walpole Home Secretary for the third time. However, he was severely criticized for his handling of the movement for parliamentary reform, and resigned in May 1867. He nonetheless continued to serve in the cabinet as Minister without Portfolio until February 1868, when Benjamin Disraeli became Prime Minister. Walpole never held office again, but remained a Member of Parliament for Cambridge University until 1882.

Family[edit]

Walpole married his first cousin, Isabella Perceval, daughter of Spencer Perceval, in 1835. They had four children, two sons and two daughters. Their elder son Sir Spencer Walpole was a well-known historian. Walpole died in May 1898, aged 91.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Spencer Horatio Walpole (WLPL824SH)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sir Horace Seymour
Member of Parliament for Midhurst
1846–1856
Succeeded by
Samuel Warren
Preceded by
Henry Goulburn
Loftus Tottenham Wigram
Member of Parliament for Cambridge University
1856–1882
With: Loftus Tottenham Wigram 1856–1859
Charles Jasper Selwyn 1859–1868
Alexander Beresford Hope 1868–1882
Succeeded by
Alexander Beresford Hope
Henry Cecil Raikes
Political offices
Preceded by
Sir George Grey, Bt
Home Secretary
1852
Succeeded by
The Viscount Palmerston
Preceded by
Sir George Grey, Bt
Home Secretary
1858–1859
Succeeded by
Thomas Sotheron-Estcourt
Preceded by
Sir George Grey, Bt
Home Secretary
1866–1867
Succeeded by
Gathorne Hardy
Preceded by
None
Minister without Portfolio
1867–1868
Succeeded by
None