Vansittart, Robert Gilbert Vansittart, 1st Baron

Vansittart, Robert Gilbert Vansittart, 1st Baron, 1881–1957, British diplomat. After serving in a number of diplomatic positions, he was (1920–24) private secretary to Lord Curzon, who was then foreign secretary. In 1930 he became permanent undersecretary of state for foreign affairs. In this position, he advocated an anti-German, though noninterventionist, policy. Vansittart served as chief diplomatic adviser to the foreign secretary from 1938 to 1941, when he was raised to the peerage. He continued throughout the war to advocate a “hard peace” for Germany.

See his memoirs, Lessons of My Life (1945) and The Mist Procession (1958); study by I. G. Colvin (1965).

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