Joseph Parkes

Joseph Parkes (22 January 1796 – 11 August 1865) was an English political reformer.

Born into Unitarian Whig circles, Parkes developed an association with the Philosophical Radicals. In 1822 he established a Birmingham solicitor's practice specializing in election law. He was an advocate of legal reform, and active in the local efforts for parliamentary reform. Although he initially opposed the formation of the Birmingham Political Union, and remained less radical than Thomas Attwood, the BPU's founder, Parkes worked with it during the period of agitation for the Reform Act - acting in effect as an intermediary between radicals and whigs.

In 1833 Henry Brougham appointed Parkes secretary of the commission on municipal corporations; he combined this work with a successful Westminster practice as a parliamentary solicitor. In 1847 ill-health prompted his retirement to work on literary projects.

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Famous quotes containing the word parkes:

    With our splendid harbour, our beautifully situated city, our vast territories, all our varied and inexhaustible natural wealth, if we don’t convert our colony into a great and prosperous nation, it will be a miracle of error for which we shall have to answer as for a gigantic sin.
    —Henry Parkes (1815–1896)