John Julius, 2nd Viscount Norwich, was born on 15 September 1929, the son of the statesman and diplomat Alfred Duff Cooper (1st Viscount) and the Lady Diana Cooper.
He spent twelve years in H.M. Foreign Service, with posts at the Embassies in Belgrade and Beirut and at the Disarmament Conference in Geneva. In 1964 he resigned to become a writer since when he has been most prolific and produced “history at its vivid, entertaining best”.
“I’ve had a long and extremely lucky life, first in the Foreign Service, and then as a writer of some thirty books. And I think I’m probably the only person alive , except the Queen, who has met Roosevelt, Churchill (whom I knew quite well) and General de Gaulle. This will perhaps be as much a reminiscence as a lecture, more personal than political – but I hope none the worse for that.” – Lord Norwich