Sir Lewis Namier (Sir Lewis Bernstein Namier) Biography
(1888–1960), (Sir Lewis Bernstein Namier), The Structure of British Politics at the Accession of George III
British historian, born near Warsaw, educated at the London School of Economics and Balliol College, Oxford. He became a British subject in 1913 and was variously engaged in business activities, historical research, and work on behalf of the Zionist movement before his appointment as Professor of Modern History at Manchester University in 1931. His reputation as a political historian of originality and distinction was established by The Structure of British Politics at the Accession of George III (1929) and England in the Age of the American Revolution (1930), which displayed his characteristic attention to minute detail. Having undergone psychoanalysis in Vienna in the early 1920s, he applied Freudian principles to his work, seeking to disclose the motives underlying the rational appearances of policies and decisions. Collections of his articles and reviews include Personalities and Powers (1955) and Vanished Supremacies (1958). Among his other works are Diplomatic Prelude (1948), on the background to the Second World War, and the three volumes of History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1745–1790 (with John Brooke, 1964). Linda Colley's Namier appeared in 1989.