Abstract

The Whig and Tory parties played an important role in British politics in the decades following the Glorious Revolution. This article introduces new data on the political affiliation of all Members of Parliament in England and Wales between 1690 and 1747. The data have numerous applications for research. The focus here is on majority party representation and the electoral politics of constituencies. I show that the Whigs had stronger representation in municipal boroughs with small and narrow electorates, whereas the Tories were stronger in county constituencies and in boroughs with large and more democratic electorates. The Whigs were stronger in the Southeast region and the Tories in Wales and the West Midlands. After the Whig leader, Robert Walpole, became prime minister in 1721 the Whigs lost some presence in their traditional strongholds including counties where the Dissenter population was large. Finally, I incorporate data on electoral contests and show that the majority party generally lost strength in constituencies following contests.

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1527-8034
Print ISSN
0145-5532
Pages
pp. 271-303
Launched on MUSE
2016-05-05
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.