The revision and renewal of the Anglo-Japanese alliance July 1910–July 1911

  • Peter Lowe


The second Anglo-Japanese alliance of 1905 was due to run for ten years. There was no imperative reason why it should be renewed in 1911 nor did the British government originally contemplate renewal. In the British view, it had become necessary to revise the terms but extension was not at first considered essential. Upon a careful assessment of strategic factors, however, it was soon realised that renewal in 1911 or 1912 was necessary. The Japanese government was not deeply concerned with revision of the terms but was more interested in extending the period of the alliance. All this became clear in the course of the negotiations in the first six months of 1911, ending in the signing on 13 July of the third Anglo-Japanese alliance, which was again to last for a ten-year period. The allies had different motives in undertaking their discussions but were joined by one common factor — both deemed the alliance fundamental to their Far Eastern policies.


Foreign Policy Foreign Minister Alliance Dinner Article Versus Strict Neutrality 
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  1. 1.
    I. H. Nish, The Anglo-Japanese Alliance: the Diplomacy of Two Island Empires, 1894–1907 (1966) p. 362.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    See J. A. S. Grenville. Lord Salisbury and Foreign Policy (1964) Chs III, IX, XVI for Anglo-American relations to 1902.Google Scholar
  3. 1.
    See letters from Bryce to Grey showing his ire at the lethargy of the State Department, 18 Mar 1911; 1 May 1911; 17 Jul 1911; and 24 Jul 1911, Grey Papers, F.O. 800/81, and F. M. Huntington Wilson, Memoirs of an Ex-Diplomat (Boston, 1945) p. 180.Google Scholar
  4. 1.
    I could find no evidence that Grey was influenced by the Agadir crisis in his attitude to the timing of renewal but it remains an interesting possibility, as stressed by T. A. Olivers, ‘The Anglo-Japanese Alliance, 1902–11, with particular reference to British Naval and Military Opinion’, unpublished M.A. thesis, University of Wales (1961) p. 278.Google Scholar
  5. 7.
    BD VIII, no. 445, Rumbold to Grey, 29 Jul 1911. On Inukai and Sun Yat-sen, see M. B. Jansen, The Japanese and Sun Yat-sen (Cambridge, Mass., 1954) pp. 4–11, 29.Google Scholar
  6. 3.
    See Viscount Grey of Fallodon, Twenty-Five Years, 2 vols (1925) 11 100–1 and Asquith’s remarks at the Committee of Imperial Defence, 26 May 1911, Cab. 38/8/40.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Peter Lowe 1969

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  • Peter Lowe

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