Biography of John Bright


Bright, John. Born November 16, 1811. An eminent orator and radical statesman., Of Quaker parentage, he entered his father's business at the age of 16. Though he had taken part in the Reform Movement, he first became prominent, along with his friend Cobden, in the anti-corn law agitation. Entered parliament for Durham, being afterward returned for Manchester, and losing that seat through his opposition to the Crimean War. In 1857 he was returned for Birmingham, holding that seat until his death. He joined Mr. Gladstone's government, which disestablished the Irish Church, but opposed his Home Rule policy in 1886, dying in the unshaken conviction that it was a fatal error. As a master of really pure Saxon English, in all it's power and pathos, Mr. Bright was never surpassed, and his speeches are worthy of attentive study on that account alone. Died March 27, 1889.