When asked to choose the most difficult public figure of his era to capture, the noted political cartoonist Sir Francis Carruthers Gould replied: "Milner. You cannot caricature character." "Forgotten Patriot" is the story of one man's dedication to duty, principles, and the British Empire. Alfred Milner rose from middle-class obscurity to haughty South African High Commissioner and then, after a decade in the wilderness, found redemption as the right hand of David Lloyd George in the five-man War Cabinet of 1916-18. Revered and reviled, Milner inspired the imperial faithful, including his famous "kindergarten," while at the same time serving as a lightning rod for critics of Empire. No matter the cost in blood and treasure, Milner believed absolutely that the measures he took to further the imperial cause were justified. This single-minded self-righteousness often blinded him to the realities, political and otherwise, of major events in which he played a central role. J. Lee Thompson is Associate Professor of History at Lamar University.
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