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Arthur James Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour (1848-1930), Prime Minister and philosopher

Sitter in 128 portraits
Born at Whittingehame House, East Lothian and educated at Eton College and Trinity College, Cambridge; Balfour first made his mark as a philosopher, publishing A Defence of Philosophic Doubt in 1879; he entered politics in 1874 through the patronage of his uncle, Lord Salisbury, as a Conservative member for Hertford; succeeded Salisbury as prime minister in 1902 but was unable to keep together a party divided by issues of Free Trade and Protectionism and resigned in 1905; during the First World War he worked as First Lord of the Admiralty and, from 1916 to 1919, as Foreign Secretary; Balfour continued in politics until the age of eighty, having served for twenty-seven years as a member of the cabinet.

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