Ministry of All the Talents
The Ministry of All the Talents was a national unity government formed by William Grenville, 1st Baron Grenville, on his appointment as Prime Minister on 11 February 1806, following the death of William Pitt the Younger.
With the country remaining at war, Grenville aimed to form the strongest possible government and so included most leading politicians from almost all groupings, although some followers of the younger Pitt, led by George Canning, refused to join.
The inclusion of Charles James Fox raised eyebrows as King George III had previously been very hostile to Fox, but the King's willingness to put aside past enmities for the sake of national unity encouraged many others to join or support the government as well. The ministry boasted a fairly progressive agenda, much of it inherited from Pitt.
The Ministry of All the Talents had comparatively little success, failing to bring the sought-after peace with France. In fact, the war continued for nearly another decade. It did, however, abolish the slave trade in Britain in 1807 before breaking up in 1807 over the question of Catholic emancipation.
List of MinistersEdit
Members of the Cabinet are in bold face.
Other uses of the termEdit
The term has since been used in politics to describe an administration with members from more than one party or even a non-coalition government that enjoys cross-party support due to gifted and/or non-partisan members. Examples include the coalition government which led Great Britain through the Second World War and the Canadian government that won the 1896 election.
- A.D. Harvey, "The Ministry of All the Talents: The Whigs in Office, February 1806 to March 1807." Historical Journal 15#4 (1972): 619-48. online.
- Lord William Wyndham Grenville Archived 13 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- John Holland Rose (1929). The Cambridge history of the British Empire: The Growth of the new Empire (Google books). Cambridge University Press. p. 511.
Second Pitt ministry
| Government of the United Kingdom
Second Portland ministry