John Murray's Gailey wins Elizabeth Longford Prize

John Murray's Gailey wins Elizabeth Longford Prize

Andrew Gailey has been awarded the £5,000 Elizabeth Longford Prize for Historical Biography for The Lost Imperialist - Lord Dufferin, Memory and Mythmaking in an Age of Celebrity (John Murray).

Gailey's book about Victorian diplomat and politician Frederick Hamiton-Temple-Blackwood, 1st Marquess of Dufferin and Ava, was chosen by the judges for its combination of "psychological acuteness" and "historical vision".

Gailey, a history teacher and author of a number of studies of 19th and 29th-century Anglo-Irish relations, will be presented with the prize at the Society of Author’s 2016 Authors’ Awards, at The Army and Navy Club in Pall Mall on 21st June.

The judges of the prize were Roy Foster, Antonia Fraser, Flora Fraser, David Gilmour and Munro Price.

Foster, chair of the judges, said: "Andrew Gailey’s The Lost Imperialist paints a masterly portrait of a late-Victorian grandee whose fame and glamour dazzled his contemporaries, but whose private persona was strangely complex and heavily inflected by his inheritance from his scandalous Sheridan forebears. It is also a panoramic study of the uses of celebrity in the age of empire. This combination of psychological acuteness and historical vision makes it an exceptionally appropriate winner of the Elizabeth Longford Prize for Historical Biography."

The Elizabeth Longford Prize for Historical Biography is sponsored by Flora Fraser and Peter Soros in affectionate memory of the biographer Elizabeth Longford.