Cecil Rhodes

(1853—1902) imperialist, colonial politician, and mining entrepreneur

Show Summary Details

Quick Reference


British-born South African statesman, Prime Minister of Cape Colony (1890–96). He went to South Africa in 1870, where he became a successful diamond prospector, and 20 years later owned 90% of the world's production of diamonds. Entering politics in 1881, he expanded British territory in southern Africa, annexing Bechuanaland (now Botswana) in 1884 and developing Rhodesia from 1889 onwards through the British South Africa Company, which he founded. While Premier, Rhodes was implicated in the Jameson Raid into Boer territory (1895) and forced to resign. In his will he established the system of Rhodes Scholarships to allow students from the British Empire (now the Commonwealth), the USA, and Germany to study at Oxford University.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).

Reference entries

See all related reference entries in Oxford Index »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.