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David Lloyd George

Updated on December 1, 2016

David Lloyd George, 1st Earl Lloyd-George of Dwyfor (1863-1945), British statesman. After practicing as a solicitor, he entered Parliament in 1890 as Liberal member for Caernarvon, which constituency he represented for 54 years. He first became famous when he attacked British imperialism in the South African war. In 1905 he became President of the Board of Trade under Campbell-Bannerman, and in 1908 Chancellor of the Exchequer under Asquith. His famous 1909 Budget providing a system of social insurance partly financed by land and income taxes, was at first blocked by the Lords, who were defeated and virtually deprived of their power to reject legislation when Lloyd George and Asquith took the issue to the polls. During World War I, Lloyd George was first Minister of Munitions (1915), then Minister of War (1916) and finally Prime Minister (1916) in the coalition cabinet. He constantly advocated unified control of the war, realizing this aim in 1918 with the appointment of Marshal Foch. Lloyd George was one of the three outstanding figures at the Paris Peace Conference (1919), and a signatory of the Versailles Treaty. After the war his handling of the Irish situation and the Greco-Turkish war caused the withdrawal of the Conservatives from the coalition, and Lloyd George lost office. Between the two World Wars he attacked in Parliament the appeasement policy adopted by England towards Germany and Italy.

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