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Spencer Compton Cavendish
Birth: Jul. 23, 1833
Death: Mar. 24, 1908
Cannes, France

8th Duke of Devonshire KG, GCVO, PC, PC (Ire), British statesman, previously known (18581891), while heir to the Dukedom, as Marquess of Hartington - a courtesy title - as this was not a peerage in its own right he was free to sit in the House of Commons, as was not uncommon for the sons of peers at the time. He has the distinction of having served as leader of three political parties (in succession- as Leader of the Liberal Party in the House of Commons, 18751880; of the Liberal Unionist Party (18861903); and of the Unionists in the House of Lords (19021903), though the Conservatives and Liberal Unionists operated in close alliance from 18921903 and would eventually merge in 1912). He also declined to become Prime Minister on three occasions, not because he was not a serious politician but because the circumstances were never right. He entered Parliament in 1857. Between 1863 and 1874 Hartington held various Government posts, including Lord of the Admiralty and under-secretary for war under Palmerston and Earl Russell, then postmaster-general, and Chief Secretary for Ireland in Gladstone's first government. In 1880, after Disraeli's government lost the General Election, Hartington was invited to form a government, but declined - as did the Earl Granville, Liberal Leader in the House of Lords - after William Ewart Gladstone made it clear that he would not serve under anybody else. After the General Election in 1886 Hartington declined to become Prime Minister, preferring instead to hold the balance of power in the House of Commons and give support from the back benches to the second Conservative government of Lord Salisbury. Early in 1887, after the resignation of Lord Randolph Churchill, Lord Salisbury offered to step down and serve in a government under Hartington, who now declined the premiership for the third time. (bio by: julia&keld) 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  William 7th Duke of Devonshire Cavendish (1808 - 1891)
  Blanche Georgiana Howard Cavendish (1812 - 1840)
 
 Siblings:
  Spencer Compton Cavendish (1833 - 1908)
  Frederick Charles Cavendish (1836 - 1882)*
  Edward Cavendish (1838 - 1891)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
St Peter Churchyard
Edensor
Derbyshire Dales District
Derbyshire, England
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Apr 02, 2001
Find A Grave Memorial# 21009
Spencer Compton Cavendish
Added by: julia&keld
 
Spencer Compton Cavendish
Added by: Kieran Smith
 
Spencer Compton Cavendish
Added by: julia&keld
 
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