Sir Robert Peel
Peel was a British Conservative statesman who served twice as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1834-35 and 1841-46) and twice as Home Secretary (1822-27 and 1828-30). He founded the Metropolitan Police Service and was one of the founders of the modern Conservative (Tory) Party.
The son of a wealthy textile manufacturer and politician, Peel was the first Prime Minister from an industrial business background. He entered the House of Commons in 1809 and became a rising star in the Tory Party. When Peel first became Home Secretary, he reformed and liberalised the criminal law and created the modern police force leading to a new type of officer, named in tribute to him as “bobbies” and “peelers”. After a brief period out of office he returned under the Duke of Wellington, also serving as Leader of the House of Commons.
After being in the Opposition (1830-34), he became Prime Minister in November 1834. Peel issued the Tamworth Manifesto, laying down the principles upon which the modern British Conservative Party is based. His first ministry was a minority government and after only four months it collapsed and he served as Leader of the Opposition during Melbourne’s second government (1835-41). Peel became Prime Minister again after the 1841 election. His second government ruled for five years. He played a central role in making free trade a reality and set up a modern banking system. His government’s major legislation included the Mines and Collieries Act 1842, the Income Tax Act 1842, the Factories Act 1844 and the Railway Regulation Act 1844.
More Figures of the month
This is a fine pair of Staffordshire clowns, both standing 6 ½” tall, dating to circa 1860. Each is wearing pantaloons, with the figure on the left holding a cane.
This is an interesting example of a Scottish hunter, wearing kilt and underglaze blue coat, with a dog at his knee and a rifle resting near his right hand. The figure stands 14 ¼” tall and dates to about 1860.
This is a pair of recumbent Bullmastiff dogs, approximately 6” tall, dating to around 1850-1860. This English breed was developed as a guard dog in the nineteenth century and is also known as the Gamekeeper’s Night Dog.
This is a rare figure of Prince Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales, second child and eldest son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. He stands with his right hand resting on the head of a brown and white dog, and his left hand on the barrel of a rifle.
This is a rare Crimean War figure representing two naval gunners with a cannon. One sailor stands upright with his right foot on the cannon, and his right hand to his head as if saluting. The second sailor is kneeling while priming the cannon.
This is a rare pair of Staffordshire figures representing two of the four seasons, Winter and Summer. Each figure stands a little over 6 ½” tall and dates to around 1850 – 1860.