Grenville, George

Grenville, George, 1712–70, British statesman, brother of Earl Temple. He entered Parliament in 1741, held several cabinet posts, and in 1763 became chief minister. His prosecution (1763) of John Wilkes provoked political reformers, and his attempt to tax the North American colonies internally through the Stamp Act raised opposition not only in America but also among the British commercial classes. Grenville alienated George III by insisting that he be the sole channel of ministerial communication to the throne, and he fell after a quarrel with the king about the composition of a regency council.

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