Walter Bagehot

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Walter Bagehot
BirthplaceLangport, Somerset, England
Businessman, essayist, journalist

Bagehot, Walter

(băj`ət), 1826–77, English social scientist. After working in his father's banking firm, he edited (1860–77) the Economist (which had been founded by his father-in-law) and helped establish its high reputation as a financial journal. From these activities came his noted study of the English banking system, Lombard Street (1873). Bagehot's classic English Constitution (1864) distinguished between the effective institutions of government and those, like the House of Lords, that had entered decay. His other important books include Literary Studies (1879) and Economic Studies (1880). In Physics and Politics (1875) he made a pioneer analysis of the interrelationship between the natural and the social sciences. He believed that investments expanded or contracted according to the mood of the market. Bagehot was also a noted literary critic of his day.


See his collected works (10 vol., 1915); biography by W. Irvine (1939, repr. 1970); studies by A. Buchan (1960) and N. St. John-Stervas (1963).

References in periodicals archive ?
In the context of the crisis of 2008, the main difference was that the financial system that we have today obviously looked very different in its details, if not in its conceptual structure, from what Walter Bagehot saw in the 19th century.
This is said as if it is a surprising truth which has just been discovered, but it is what every defender of monarchy has been saying from Walter Bagehot to Vernon Bogdanor.
He was a barrister, prolific author and a prominent Catholic, a chairman of Booker Prize judges and the editor of the literary works of the Victorian constitutionalist Walter Bagehot.
In his book Lombard Street, Walter Bagehot quoted Jeremiah Harman, the governor of the Bank of England in the 1825-1826 crisis:
Walter Bagehot, the 19th century historian, famously warned against allowing public scrutiny of royalty, adding that "the monarchy's mystery is its life, we must not let daylight in upon the magic".
The author of Lombard Street (1873), Walter Bagehot, seems to have been the first modern economic writer to prefigure FDR's psychological brinksmanship in characterizing fear itself as the truly "malignant" force (253).
Walter Bagehot, The English Constitution, 1867, Ithaca, N.
The Victorian banking writer Walter Bagehot in his classic Lombard Street, which Congdon cites repeatedly on other matters, was quite clear that legal privileges were the source of the Bank of England's central-banking status.
In Lombard Street, Walter Bagehot [1873] recognized the critical importance of providing liquidity during times of crisis and urged the Bank to embrace this role with less hesitation than it had shown in the past.
Whatever the reasons for that and why the great English constitutional historian Walter Bagehot described the Grand Old Man of 19th-century politics and four times Prime Minister of Great Britain as "Oxford on the surface and Liverpool underneath", and his opponent Benjamin Disraeli accused him of not possessing a single redeeming defect, the basic incontrovertible fact is that Walter Ewart Gladstone, fourth son of plantation owner John, was born in 62, Rodney Street, 200 years ago this week.
The Queen is our head of state but the monarchy belongs to what Walter Bagehot described in 1867 as the "dignified" part of our constitution.
Walter Bagehot, the 19th-century constitutionalist and editor of The Economist, is reputed to have advised his writers: "Simplify, then exaggerate.