“We do not believe that one particle of womanly gentleness and dignity, nay, not even the finest flavour of high‐bred grace, will be lost when women are permitted to record their votes for representatives in Parliament.” — Frances Power Cobbe

1866       March 24. Frances Power Cobbe's unsigned letter in the Spectator “Class representation for Petticoats.”

1866       April. Disraeli: “If there is to be universal suffrage, women have as much right to vote as men.”

1868       14 April. Manchester suffrage society holds pubic meeting at which, {for the first time, women were among the speakers” (Mitchell 183).

1868       21 April. Married Woman's Property Act fails passage with a tie vote — 123/123.

1868       14 May. John Stuart Mill brings to Parliament a petition for female suffrage with 21,557 signatures.

1869       May. John Bright successfully proposes amendment to municipal francise bill stating “wherever words which import the masculine gender, the same shall be held to include females,” thus enabling women ratepayers [taxpayers] to vote for Town Councilors and other municipal officers.

1869       17 July. First London public suffrage meeting at which women spoke.

1869       John Stuart Mill publishes The Subjection of Women.

1870       John Bright's Women's Disabilities Removal Bill.

1870       W. E. Forster, sponsor of Elementary Education Bill, states that “words importing the masculine gender should be taken to include and mean the feminine gender unless the contrary is specifically declared” (200).

1871       3 May. Woman's suffrage bill defeated in Parliament, 220 to 151.

1871       6 November. Central Committee of the National Society for Women's Suffrage founded.


Last modified 10 July 2014