David Lloyd George, 1886 Diary

William George papers 6

David Lloyd George (1863-1945) is the greatest international leader that Wales has ever produced. He had considerable influence over politics in Wales, Britain and Europe. He was Prime Minister from 1916 until 1922.

Lloyd George was born in Manchester in 1863 and brought up in Llanystumdwy by his widowed mother. He established himself as a solicitor in Cricieth and began taking an active role in local politics. In 1890 he was elected MP for Caernarfon boroughs. He played an important part in the 'Cymru Fydd'(Young Wales) movement that was campaigning for Welsh home rule, but following its failure he distanced himself from Welsh matters and concentrated on wider radical subjects.

He climbed the political ladder and became Chancellor of the Exchequer from 1908 until 1915 when he was responsible for a number of important measures to improve the lives of ordinary people through establishing a national health insurance and pension scheme. Lloyd George is remembered mainly for the part he played in the First World War, 1914-1918. As the Minister for Munitions (1915-16), War Minister (1916) and Prime Minister he became a symbol of Britain's commitment to the war.

This diary is from a collection of the papers of William George, David Lloyd George's brother, which was purchased by the library in 1989. This important archive contains over 3000 letters by Lloyd George to his brother, as well as a series of 11 diaries that he kept during the early years of his political career.

The diary from 1886 contains an account of his personal life and his political career. It describes his first public speech - in Blaenau Ffestiniog on 12 February - and describes his political activities and ambitions in some detail. There are also a few interesting references to his courtship of Margaret Owen from Mynydd Ednyfed, Cricieth, who later became his wife.

Further reading

  • William George. My brother and I. London, 1958.
  • Cyril Parry. David Lloyd George. Dinbych : Gwasg Gee, c 1984.
  • John Grigg. Lloyd George : the young Lloyd George. London : Penguin, 2002.

Christmas 2014 and
New Year 2015

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A merry Christmas to everyone

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