Country Gentlemen in Parliament 1750-1783

Sir Lewis Namier examines the British Parliamentary groupings of the country gentlemen and their reactions to the movements of public opinion during the years 1750-1783.

The country gentlemen in the late eighteenth century had “a conception of Parliamentary duties radically different from our own: such Members did not deem it a function of Parliament to provide a Government—the Government to them was the King’s. Their duty was to support it as long as they honestly could, while judging of questions that came before them with the impartiality of a jury” ... “Independent and unconnected,” they owed suit to no particular leader or party.

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