Grey, Charles Grey, 2d Earl

Grey, Charles Grey, 2d Earl,

1764–1845, British statesman. Elected to Parliament in 1786, he was one of those appointed to manage the impeachment of Warren HastingsHastings, Warren,
1732–1818, first governor-general of British India. Employed (1750) as a clerk by the East India Company, he soon became manager of a trading post in Bengal.
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. From 1792 he was a leader of the movement for parliamentary reform and opposed the repressive policies of Sir William Pitt. He succeeded (1806) Charles James Fox as foreign secretary in the "ministry of all talents" and Whig leader of the House of Commons, putting through the measure to abolish the African slave trade (1807). As prime minister (1830–34) he secured the passage of the Reform Bill of 1832 (see under Reform ActsReform Acts
or Reform Bills,
in British history, name given to three major measures that liberalized representation in Parliament in the 19th cent. Representation of the counties and boroughs in the House of Commons had not, except for the effects of parliamentary
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) by threatening to force William IV to create enough Whig peers to carry it in the House of Lords.

Bibliography

See biography by G. M. Trevelyan (1929, repr. 1971).

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