Prime minister 1846-52 and 1865-66
Russel was the second shortest prime minister at 5foot4 apparently he is considered to have look odd with his short statue but disproportionally large head.
He was Home Secretary from 1835 and became prime minster in 1846. In 1848 he faced the Irish famine, he did ask the government to provide relief but, did not oversee it effectively. He could be absent minded and missed appointments, sent letters to incorrect people etc… He was however successful in terms of education reforms and preventing in 1848 a chartist revilution that occurred in many other countries in Europe.
He was bad at managing colleagues, this led to foreign secretary Palmerston forcing him into resigning (full details are in the book). In 1858 Queen Victoria ; although she considered both Russel and Palmerston in 1859 to be ‘terrible old men’, she had to choose between the two men. She chose Palmerston but, he died in 1865. Russel during this time was foreign secretary. He had another year of being prime minister from 1865 before reigning in 1866.
“Dicken’s decidcated A Tale of Two Cities to Lord Russel, ‘In remembrance of many public services and private kindnesses’.