The Rt Hon Spencer Perceval
|Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
4 October 1809 – 11 May 1812
|Preceded by||The Duke of Portland|
|Succeeded by||The Earl of Liverpool|
|Chancellor of the Exchequer|
26 March 1807 – 11 May 1812
|Preceded by||Lord Henry Petty|
|Succeeded by||Nicholas Vansittart|
|Born||1 November 1762|
Audley Square, London, England
|Died||11 May 1812 (aged 49)|
Lobby of the House of Commons
Perceval was the seventh son of John Perceval, 2nd Earl of Egmont by his second wife. His father, a close friend of Frederick, Prince of Wales and King George III, had served in the Cabinet as First Lord of the Admiralty.
The Orders in Council against trade which Perceval had written in 1807 became unpopular. In the winter of 1811 the Luddite riots started. They were also a cause of the War of 1812 with the United States of America. Perceval was forced to have an inquiry by the House of Commons.
On 11 May 1812, Perceval was on his way to attend the inquiry. In the lobby of the House of Commons he was shot through the heart by John Bellingham. Perceval's body lay in 10 Downing Street for five days before burial. Bellingham gave himself up immediately. Tried for murder, he was found guilty and hanged a week later.
Bellingham had a grievance, but it was not political. Bellingham petitioned the United Kingdom government for compensation over his imprisonment in Russia. This had been caused by his employer, but Bellingham blamed the British government for not getting him compensation.