The landed interest and the national interest, 1660–1800
in Parliaments, nations and identities in Britain and Ireland, 1660–1850
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This chapter explores how private landowners sought legislation in the parliament and what light their successes and failures shed on both their power and the claim that their and the nation's interests were largely synonymous. For radicals, new ideas of citizenship would inevitably promote a new and more inclusive idea of the national interest. The presence of national registries in Ireland and Scotland, but not in England, hints that the nature of the landed interest in the three kingdoms took different forms. In the late eighteenth century, Scottish landowners more willingly thought of themselves as a landed interest than those in England and Ireland and occasionally voiced the need for a British identity amongst agriculturists. Centrally, the landed interest struggled to coalesce because of the absence of what might be called a government agricultural policy.

Editor: Julian Hoppit

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