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34 People in group: Profession; Speakers of the House of Commons

The Speaker of the House of Commons is an MP, elected by other Members of Parliament to chair debates in the Commons chamber. They have the highest authority in the Commons, determining which member may speak, with the right to suspend MPs. Arthur Onslow (Speaker 1728 – 61) is responsible for many of the practices that exist today. Before his appointment, many Speakers had political affiliations; today Speakers must remain politically impartial, resigning from their current political position once elected. The Speaker of the House of Commons is elected by the House at the beginning of each new parliamentary term, after a general election or after the resignation, retirement or death of the previous speaker. In 1992, the first female Speaker, Betty Boothroyd, Baroness Boothroyd was elected and for the first time in 2009, the Speaker was elected using a secret ballot system.

Betty Boothroyd, Baroness Boothroyd

1929-
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 11 portraits

William Bromley

circa 1663-1732
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 6 portraits

Charles Manners Sutton, 1st Viscount Canterbury

1780-1845
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter associated with 19 portraits

Charles Abbot, 1st Baron Colchester

1757-1829
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter associated with 10 portraits

Charles Wolfran Cornwall

1735-1789
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter associated with 7 portraits

James Abercromby, 1st Baron Dunfermline

1776-1858
Barrister and Whig politician, Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 9 portraits

William Shepherd Morrison, 1st Viscount Dunrossil

1893-1961
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 37 portraits

Charles Shaw-Lefevre, Viscount Eversley

1794-1888
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 12 portraits

Hon. Edward Algernon FitzRoy

1869-1943
Speaker of the House of Commons; son of 3rd Baron Southampton
Sitter in 15 portraits

Paul Foley

1644 or 1645-1699
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter associated with 1 portrait

Sir William Gregory

1625-1696
Judge; Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter associated with 1 portrait

Henry Bouverie William Brand, 1st Viscount Hampden

1814-1892
Politician; Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 7 portraits

Sir Thomas Hanmer, 4th Bt

1677-1746
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 1 portrait

Sir Harry Braustyn Hylton Hylton-Foster

1905-1965
Speaker of the House of Commons;
Sitter in 7 portraits

Horace Maybray King, Baron Maybray-King

1901-1986
Politician and speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 15 portraits

Arthur Onslow

1691-1768
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 13 portraits

(John) Evelyn Denison, 1st Viscount Ossington

1800-1873
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 12 portraits

Robert Harley, 1st Earl of Oxford

1661-1724
Lord Treasurer
Sitter in 14 portraits

Arthur Wellesley Peel, 1st Viscount Peel

1829-1912
Speaker of the House of Commons
Sitter in 22 portraits

Henry Powle

1630-1692
Master of the Rolls and speaker of the Convention Parliament
Sitter associated with 4 portraits