Harold Macmillan biography

Harold Macmillan


1894 – 1986


Who was Harold Macmillan?

Maurice Harold Macmillan, 1st Earl of Stockton, OM, PC, FRS was a British Conservative politician and statesman who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 10 January 1957 to 18 October 1963.

Nicknamed "Supermac" and known for his pragmatism, wit and unflappability, Macmillan achieved note before the Second World War as a Tory radical and critic of appeasement. As a child, teenager and later young man, he was an admirer of the policies and leadership of a succession of Liberal Prime Ministers, starting with Henry Campbell-Bannerman, who came to power near the end of 1905 when Macmillan was only 11 years old, and then H. H. Asquith, whom he later described as having "intellectual sincerity and moral nobility", and particularly of Asquith's successor, David Lloyd George, whom he regarded as a "man of action", likely to accomplish his goals.

Macmillan served in the Grenadier Guards during the First World War. He was wounded three times, most severely in September 1916 during the Battle of the Somme. He spent the rest of the war in a military hospital and suffered pain and partial immobility for the rest of his life.

Famous Quotes:

  • A Foreign Secretaryand this applies also to a prospective Foreign Secretaryis always faced with this cruel dilemma. Nothing he can say can do very much good, and almost anything he may say may do a great deal of harm. Anything he says that is not obvious is dangerous; whatever is not trite is risky. He is forever poised between the cliche and the indiscretion.
  • Marxism is like a classical building that followed the Renaissance; beautiful in its way, but incapable of growth.
  • At home you always have to be a politician. When you're abroad you almost feel yourself a statesman.
  • If you don't believe in God, all you have to believe in is decency. Decency is very good. Better decent than indecent. But I don't think it's enough.
  • Jaw-jaw is better than war-war.
  • Memorial services are the cocktail parties of the geriatric set.
  • Power? It's like a Dead Sea fruit. When you achieve it, there is nothing there.
  • It has been said that there is no fool like an old fool, except a young fool. But the young fool has first to grow up to be an old fool to realize what a damn fool he was when he was a young fool.
  • As usual the Liberals offer a mixture of sound and original ideas. Unfortunately none of the sound ideas is original and none of the original ideas is sound.
  • The wind of change is blowing through the continent. Whether we like it or not, this growth of national consciousness is a political fact.


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"Harold Macmillan." Biographies.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 18 Jan. 2021. <https://www.biographies.net/people/en/harold_macmillan>.

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Feb 10, 1894
Also known as
  • モーリス・ハロルド・マクミラン
  • Macmillan, Harold
  • Church of England
  • Anglicanism
  • United Kingdom
  • Balliol College
  • Eton College
  • University of Oxford
  • Summer Fields School
Dec 29, 1986
Chelwood Gate

on July 23, 2013

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