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9th September 1893

House of Lords rejects Second Home Rule Bill

The prime minister, William Ewart Gladstone, presented the Second Home Rule Bill to Parliament in February 1893. The new bill changed some of the financial provisions of the First Home Rule Bill and included a representation of 80 Irish MPs in Westminster.

The Unionists debated the proposal clause by clause and provided well organised opposition to the bill. The House of Commons passed the bill but it was thrown out by the House of Lords.

Exhausted and demoralised, Gladstone retired in March 1894. He was replaced by Lord Roseberry who had none of Gladstone's enthusiasm for Home Rule. In the next year's general election, the Conservatives won a majority and remained in power for the next decade.

Between 1894 and 1906, with the Liberals in opposition and the Irish Parliamentary Party severely weakened, Home Rule fell off the political agenda in Westminster.

Parliament, Unionism, Nationalism
Belleek chamber pot with picture of W. E. Gladstone, Liberal prime minister.
© NMNI, Ulster Museum HOYFM.355.1998