Search the Collection

William Pitt (1759-1806), Prime Minister

Sitter associated with 167 portraits
Pitt dominated Parliament as Tory Prime Minister from 1783 to 1801 and 1804 to 1806. He restructured Britain's finances after the American Revolution and reformed the government of India in 1784. Pitt regarded the French Revolution as a foreign issue but began to worry that British radicals were in touch with French revolutionaries. After France declared war in 1793, he clamped down on domestic dissent with the first series of 'gagging acts'. In 1800 he arranged a Parliamentary union with Ireland but resigned in 1801 over George III's opposition to Catholics sitting in Parliament. Pitt's rivalry with Fox, his political and temperamental opposite, dominated Parliament for over twenty years.