Eliot, Sir Charles

▪ British colonial administrator
in full  Sir Charles Norton Edgecumbe Eliot  
born Jan. 8, 1862, Sibford Gower, Oxfordshire, Eng.
died March 16, 1931, at sea, in the Strait of Malacca

      diplomat and colonial administrator who initiated the policy of white supremacy in the British East Africa Protectorate (now Kenya).

      A scholar and linguist, Eliot served in diplomatic posts in Russia (1885), Morocco (1892), Turkey (1893), and Washington, D.C. (1899). In 1900 he was knighted and appointed commissioner and consul general for the East African Protectorate. He collaborated with the farmers there (notably Lord Delamere, to whom he ceded 100,000 acres [40,500 hectares] of land) and encouraged European immigration by the wholesale award of land concessions to European settlers.

      By 1903 he was encountering opposition from the Colonial Office, which felt he was proceeding too rapidly. In 1904, after being criticized for granting a concession on land previously reserved for the Masai, he resigned his position. Following his resignation, he took no other diplomatic posts until 1920, when he became ambassador to Japan. He retired in 1926, continuing to live in Japan.

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Universalium. 2010.

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