George Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll
The Duke of Argyll
KG, KT, PC, FRS, FRSE
Portrait of Argyll, c. 1860
|Lord Privy Seal|
4 January 1853 – 7 December 1855
|Prime Minister||The Earl of Aberdeen
The Viscount Palmerston
|Preceded by||The Marquess of Salisbury|
|Succeeded by||The Earl of Harrowby|
18 June 1859 – 26 June 1866
|Prime Minister||The Viscount Palmerston
The Earl Russell
|Preceded by||The Earl of Hardwicke|
|Succeeded by||The Earl of Malmesbury|
28 April 1880 – 2 May 1881
|Prime Minister||William Ewart Gladstone|
|Preceded by||The Duke of Northumberland|
|Succeeded by||The Lord Carlingford|
30 November 1855 – 21 February 1858
|Prime Minister||The Viscount Palmerston|
|Preceded by||The Viscount Canning|
|Succeeded by||The Lord Colchester|
|Secretary of State for India|
9 December 1868 – 17 February 1874
|Prime Minister||William Ewart Gladstone|
|Preceded by||Sir Stafford Northcote, Bt|
|Succeeded by||The Marquess of Salisbury|
|Born||30 April 1823
Ardencaple Castle, Dunbartonshire
|Died||24 April 1900
Inveraray Castle, Argyll
|Citizenship||United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland|
George John Douglas Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll, KG, KT, PC, FRS, FRSE (30 April 1823 – 24 April 1900), styled Marquess of Lorne until 1847, was a Scottish peer and Liberal politician as well as a writer on science, religion, and the politics of the 19th century.
Argyll was born at Ardencaple Castle, Dunbartonshire, the second but only surviving son of John Campbell, 7th Duke of Argyll, and his second wife Joan Glassel, the only daughter of John Glassel. Argyll succeeded his father as duke in 1847. With his death he became also hereditary Master of the Household of Scotland and Sheriff of Argyllshire.
A close associate of Prince Albert, he served as Lord Privy Seal between 1852 and 1855 in the cabinet of Lord Aberdeen, and then as Postmaster General between 1855 and 1858 in Lord Palmerston's first cabinet. He was again Lord Privy Seal between 1859 and 1866 in the second Palmerston administration, and then under Lord Russell's second administration, in which position he was notable as a strong advocate of the Northern cause in the American Civil War.
In William Ewart Gladstone's first government of 1868 to 1874, Argyll became Secretary of State for India, in which role his refusal to promise support against the Russians to the Emir of Afghanistan helped lead to the Second Afghan War. Argyll's wife, née Lady Elizabeth Georgiana Leveson-Gower, also served as Mistress of the Robes in this government. In 1871, while actually serving in the Cabinet, his son and heir, Lord Lorne, married one of Queen Victoria's daughters, Princess Louise, enhancing his status as a leading Grandee.
In 1880 he again served under Gladstone, as Lord Privy Seal, but resigned on 31 March 1881 in protest at Gladstone's Land Bill, claiming it would interfere with the rights of landlords and had been brought in response to terrorism. In 1886, he fully broke with Gladstone over the question of the Prime Minister's support for Irish Home Rule, although he did not join the Liberal Unionist Party, but pursued an independent course. Having been already Vice Lord Lieutenant from 1847, Argyll held the honorary post of Lord Lieutenant of Argyllshire from 1862 until his death in 1900. He was sworn of the Privy Council in 1853, appointed a Knight of the Thistle in 1856 and a Knight of the Garter in 1883. In 1892 he was created Duke of Argyll in the Peerage of the United Kingdom.
Argyll was also a scientist, or at least a publicist on scientific matters, especially evolution and economics. He was a leader in the scholarly opposition against Darwinism (1869, 1884b) and an important economist (1893) and institutionalist (1884a), in which latter capacity he was quite similar to his political opponent, Benjamin Disraeli.
In 1851, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society and was appointed Chancellor of the University of St Andrews. Three years later, he became additionally Rector of the University of Glasgow. In 1849 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and served as its President from 1860 to 1864.
Marriages & Children
Argyll was married three times.
He married firstly Lady Elizabeth Georgiana Leveson-Gower, eldest daughter of George Sutherland-Leveson-Gower, 2nd Duke of Sutherland, in 1844. They had five sons and seven daughters. 
- John George Edward Henry Douglas Sutherland Campbell, 9th Duke of Argyll (born 6 August 1845, died 2 May 1914)
- Lord Archibald Campbell (born 18 December 1846, died 29 March 1913), father of Niall Campbell, 10th Duke of Argyll
- Lord Walter Campbell (born 30 July 1848, died 2 May 1889), grandfather of Ian Campbell, 11th Duke of Argyll
- Lady Edith Campbell (born 7 November 1849, died 6 July 1913)
- Lady Elisabeth Campbell (born c1850, died 24 September 1896)
- Lord George Granville Campbell (born 25 December 1850, died 21 April 1915)
- Lord Colin Campbell (born 9 March 1853, died 18 June 1895)
- Lady Victoria Campbell (born 22 May 1854, died 6 July 1910)
- Lady Evelyn Campbell (born 17 August 1855, died 22 March 1940)
- Lady Frances Campbell (born 22 February 1858, died 25 February 1931)
- Lady Mary Emma Campbell (born 22 September 1859, died 22 March 1947)
- Lady Constance Harriett Campbell (born 11 November 1864, died 9 February 1922)
The Duchess of Argyll died aged 53 in May 1878. In 1881, Argyll married Amelia Maria (born 1843), daughter of the Right Reverend Thomas Claughton (Bishop of St Albans) and widow of Augustus Anson. She died aged 50 in January 1894. In 1895, Argyll married Ina, daughter of Archibald McNeill, as his third wife. There were no children from either the second or third marriages.
Argyll died at Inveraray Castle in April 1900, six days before his 77th birthday, and was succeeded in his titles by his eldest son, John. He is buried at Kilmun Parish Church. His third wife survived him by a quarter of a century, dying in December 1925.
- (1867) The Reign of Law. London: Strahan. (5th Ed. in 1868).
- (1869) Primeval Man: An Examination of some Recent Speculations. New York: Routledge.
- (1879) The Eastern Question. London: Strahan.
- (1884) The Unity of Nature. New York: Putnam.
- (1887) Scotland As It Was and As It Is
- (1893) The Unseen Foundations of Society. An Examination of the Fallacies and Failures of Economic Science Due to Neglected Elements. London: John Murray.
- (1906) Autobiography and Memoirs
- Dod, Robert P. (1860). The Peerage, Baronetage and Knightage of Great Britain and Ireland. London: Whitaker and Co. p. 92.
- Partridge, Michael (2003). Gladstone. Routledge. p. 192. ISBN 978-0-415-21626-5.
- The London Gazette: . 4 January 1853.
- The London Gazette: . 6 May 1856.
- The London Gazette: . 8 April 1892.
- The Peerage and Baronetage of the British Empire as at Present Existing
- The Peerage, entry for 8th Duke of Argyll
- thepeerage.com George Douglas Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll
|Wikisource has original works written by or about:
George John Douglas Campbell
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to George Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll.|
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by the Duke of Argyll
- Archival material relating to George Campbell, 8th Duke of Argyll listed at the UK National Archives