Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Anthony Eden

Robert Anthony Eden, 1st Earl of Avon (June 12 1897 - January 14, 1977) was a Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and leader of the Conservative party.

The Earl of Avon
Term of Office:7 April 1955 - 11 January 1957
PM Predecessor:Winston Churchill
PM Successor:Harold Macmillan
Date of Birth:12 June 1897
Place of Birth:Bishop Auckland, Durham
Political Party:Conservative

Eden studied at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford. Following a military career during the First World War, for which he received a Military Cross, Eden entered politics in 1923 when elected as Member of Parliament for Leamington and Warwick. He became Parliamentary Private Secretary at the Foreign Office in 1926. In 1931 he was promoted to Under-Secretary of State. In 1935 he briefly served as Minster for the League of Nations under Stanley Baldwin's Government but was soon promoted to Foreign Secretary. Three years later, he resigned from Neville Chamberlain's Government in 1938 in protest of Chamberlain's policy of appeasement of the increasing fascist presence in Europe. He was the first Foreign Secretary to resign. He returned to the cabinet upon Winston Churchill becoming Prime Minister, serving as Secretary of State for War. After Clement Attlee's landslide election victory in 1945, Eden returned to the Opposition benches as Deputy Leader of the Opposition. From 1951 to 1955 he was Foreign Secretary for a second time.

He succeeded Winston Churchill as Prime Minister of the UK in 1955, and resigned in 1957 in the aftermath of the Suez Crisis. About the crisis, Eden famously defended his decision to bomb Egyptian troops following the nationalisation of the Suez Canal by remarking "We are in an armed conflict; that is the phrase I have used. There has been no declaration of war". The crisis ended ignominiously for the 'old colonial power' Britain and in particular Eden. He faced fierce criticism from both the United Nations and critics at home. He resigned in January 1957 as both Prime Minister and MP.

He was made Earl of Avon in 1961. The book Another World is an account of his experiences as a soldier. Eden died in Salisbury in 1977.

Anthony Eden's Government, April 1955 - January 1957


Preceded by:
Sir Winston Churchill
Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom
Followed by:
Harold Macmillan

{| border="2" align="center" |- |width="30%" align="center"|Preceded by:
New Creation |width="40%" align="center"|Earl of Avon |width="30%" align="center"|Followed by:
Nicholas Eden |}