Andrew Bonar Law has had the misfortune to be remembered — if at all — as ‘the Unknown Prime Minister’. This was partly due to the brevity of his premiership — a mere 209 days — the shortest in modern times, but rather more to a bon mot attributed to Asquith, who attended his funeral in Westminster Abbey. The former Liberal Prime Minister, who had treated Law with disdain throughout his lifetime, was heard to remark how fitting it was ‘that we should have buried the Unknown Prime Minister by the side of the Unknown Soldier’. This misfortune was compounded by Lord Blake, who chose it as the title of his highly praised biography (Robert Blake, The Unknown Prime Minister, 1955).
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