Ronald Macleay

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Sir James William Ronald Macleay GCMG (1870 – 5 March 1943) was a British diplomat.


Macleay was educated at Charterhouse School and Balliol College, Oxford, and entered diplomatic service in 1895. He was appointed Second Secretary in November 1901.[1] He served in Washington, D.C., Constantinople, Mexico City and Brussels, among other postings. [2] He was Counsellor with the British Legation in Peking from 1914 to 1919 and was Ambassador to Argentina from 1919 to 1922.[3][4] In 1922 Macleay returned to China becoming ambassador from 1922 to 1926.[3]

His period as ambassador to China was criticized, and although Macleay was favorable to American ambassador John Van Antwerp MacMurray, it was not reciprocated; MacMurray described him as "a Tory of the type that neither imagined good could come out of any liberal ideas hatched at Washington under the auspices of the American rebels, nor perceived within China itself had been developing ideas which had already challenged and movements which had undermined British primacy."[2] In 1927 he became British Minister to Czechoslovakia until 1929 and in 1930 until 1933 returned to his post as Ambassador to Argentina.[3] He married Evelyn, daughter of Sir Robert Peel, 3rd Baronet, in 1901.


  1. ^ "No. 27381". The London Gazette. 29 November 1901. p. 8409. 
  2. ^ a b MacMurray, John Van Antwerp (1992). How the Peace was Lost: The 1935 Memorandum, Developments Affecting American Policy in the Far East. Hoover Press. p. 75. ISBN 978-0-8179-9151-7. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Lo, Hui-Min (1 June 1978). The Correspondence of G. E. Morrison 1912-1920. CUP Archive. p. 353. ISBN 978-0-521-21561-9. Retrieved 2 October 2012. 
  4. ^ "British Ambassadors and High Commissioners 1880-2010". Colin Mackie, Retrieved 2 October 2012.