Douglas-Home, Alec (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland)
Alec Douglas-Home was British Conservative prime minister from 1963 until 1964. He renounced his peerage in order to hold the post, succeeding Harold Macmillan as leader of a divided and scandal-hit administration. With a general election due, he had little opportunity to make a significant impact during his tenure, though defeat to Harold Wilson’s Labour Party in 1964 was marginal. Douglas-Home was widely respected for his integrity and honesty and many of his finest achievements came during his two spells at the foreign office rather than in his time as prime minister.
Alexander Frederick Douglas-Home was born on 2 July 1903 in London. He came from an aristocratic background, the son of Lord Dunglass (later the 13th Earl of Home) and Lady Lilian Lambton, whose father was the 4th Earl of Durham. When Douglas-Home’s father took the title 13th Earl, Alexander in turn became Lord Dunglass. He was educated at Eton before reading History at Christ Church, Oxford. He...