Lord Cromer: Victorian Imperialist, Edwardian Proconsul by Roger Owen - review by Andrew Lycett

Andrew Lycett

Following The Pharohs

Lord Cromer: Victorian Imperialist, Edwardian Proconsul


Oxford University Press 436pp order from our bookshop

WAS LORD CURZON, as Vicemy of India, or Lord Cromer, as London's agent and consul-general in Cairo, the most powerful man in the British Empire? It was a close-run thing: Curzon was surrounded by more ceremony and probably enjoyed more influence, but Cromer had greater, more enduring command over a country's political and economic development as the architect of 'Modern Egypt' (the title of his best-selling book of 1908).

The way Cromer took bankrupt Egypt by the scruff of its neck over three decades from 1877 to 1907 did not win many plaudits within that country. At the start of this judicious and timely biography, Roger Owen tells of a group of Egyptian students seeking out the imperial colossus's

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