Regency Personalities Series
In my attempts to provide us with the details of the Regency, today I continue with one of the many period notables.
Robert Jocelyn 3rd Earl of Roden
27 October 1788 – 20 March 1870
Jocelyn was the son of Robert Jocelyn, 2nd Earl of Roden, and Frances Theodosia, daughter of the Very Reverend Robert Bligh, Dean of Elphin.
A Tory, Jocelyn was Member of Parliament for County Louth from 1806 to 1807 and from 1810 to 1820. Then he succeeded his father as Earl. In March 1812 he was sworn of the Privy Council and appointed Treasurer of the Household under Spencer Perceval. He retained the office when Lord Liverpool became Prime Minister after Perceval’s assassination. In July 1812 he was made Vice-Chamberlain of the Household, a post he held for the rest of the Liverpool administration.
In 1821 he was created Baron Clanbrassil, of Hyde Hall in the County of Hertford and Dundalk in the County of Louth, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom, which entitled him to an automatic seat in the House of Lords. The same year, on 20 August 1821, he was also appointed a Knight of the Order of St Patrick. In 1858 he was sworn of the Irish Privy Council.
Despite Lord Roden’s political career, he is best remembered for his strong support for Protestant causes in the north of Ireland and elsewhere. He supported religious societies such as the Hibernian Bible Society, the Sunday School Society, the Evangelical Alliance and the Protestant Orphan Society, and also conducted service in the private chapel at Tullymore Park, Castlewellan, County Down, his chief residence in Ireland. He was an important leader in the Orange Order, eventually rising to the rank of Grand Master.
However, in 1849 a clash took part between Orangeman and Roman Catholics at Dolly’s Brae, near Castlewellan, in which several people were killed after he had invited the Orangemen onto his estate and addressed them, urging them to “do their duty as loyal, Protestant men”. A commission was set up to examine the event, and criticized Roden for his conduct. As a result of this he was removed from his position as a member of the Commission of the Peace. (DWW and 9 years later sworn to the Irish Privy Council. It sounds like he incited a riot that caused deaths and was later patted on the back for it.)
Lord Roden was twice married. He married firstly the Hon. Maria Frances Catherine, daughter of Thomas Stapleton, 16th Baron le Despencer, on 9 January 1813. They had three sons and three daughters. His eldest son, Robert Jocelyn, Viscount Jocelyn, was also a politician, but predeceased his father.
After Roden’s first wife’s death on 25 February 1861, he married secondly Clementina Janet, daughter of Thomas Andrews, of Greenknowes, and widow of Captain Robert Lushington Reilly, of Scarva, County Down, on 16 August 1862. They had no children.
In later life Lord Roden spent time in Edinburgh, Scotland, for his health. He died, aged 81, and was succeeded in the earldom by his grandson, Robert, the son of Viscount Jocelyn. The Countess of Roden died on 9 July 1903.
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