1885 United Kingdom general election
The 1885 United Kingdom general election was held from 24 November to 18 December 1885. This was the first general election after an extension of the franchise and redistribution of seats. For the first time a majority of adult males could vote and most constituencies by law returned a single member to Parliament fulfilling one of the ideals of Chartism to provide direct single-member, single-electorate accountability. It saw the Liberals, led by William Ewart Gladstone, win the most seats, but not an overall majority. As the Irish Nationalists held the balance of power between them and the Conservatives who sat with an increasing number of allied Unionist MPs (referring to the Union of Great Britain and Ireland), this exacerbated divisions within the Liberals over Irish Home Rule and led to a Liberal split and another general election the following year.
All 670 seats in the House of Commons
336 seats needed for a majority
Colours denote the winning party
|UK General Election 1885|
|Stood||Elected||Gained||Unseated||Net||% of total||%||No.||Net %|
|Scottish Land Restoration||5||0||0||0||0.05||2,359||N/A|
|Social Democratic Federation||3||0||0||0||0.02||657||N/A|
- List of MPs elected in the 1885 United Kingdom general election
- Parliamentary franchise in the United Kingdom 1885–1918
- Representation of the People Act 1884
- Redistribution of Seats Act 1885
- 1885 United Kingdom general election in Ireland
- 1885 United Kingdom general election in Scotland
- Hawarden Kite, Gladstone announces for Home Rule and wins over the Irish
- All parties shown.
- Roberts, Matthew. "Election Cartoons and Political Communication In Victorian England.' Cultural & Social History (2013) 10#3 pp 369-395, covers 1860 to 1890.