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Chartist meeting on Kennington Common, 1848

Chartism was a British working-class movement for reforms named after William Lovett's People's Charter,[1] a bill drafted in May 1838. It demanded suffrage for all men.

In April, 1848, the Chartist London Convention was held at a meeting on Kennington Common, which marked the end of the movement.


As the movement came to a close, several others tried to co-opt the activists and move them into a different direction.[2] Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels[2] had high hopes and believed they could bring the activists in their direction. The Christian socialists and Charles Kingsley believed they could be moved in their direction, with Kingsley going so far as to proclaim that he was "a Church of England parson, and a Chartist."[3][4]

The most notable direct result[2] of the Chartist movement is the Cooperative Movement, specifically, the movement that came from a few weavers at Rochdale in 1843.


  1. [1], Encyclopedia Britannica
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 (1921) The Success of Chartism. The Weekly Review, Volumes 4-5. 
  3. (1888) Christian Socialism. K. Paul, Trench. 
  4. West, Julius (1920). A History of the Chartist Movement. Constable Company Limited.