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Posts Tagged ‘William Lyttelton 1st Baron Lyttelton’

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.

William Henry Lyttelton 3rd Baron Lyttelton
3 April 1782 – 30 April 1837

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William Henry Lyttelton

William Henry Lyttelton 3rd Baron Lyttelton was the son of William Henry Lyttelton, 1st Baron Lyttelton, by his second marriage to Caroline, daughter of John Bristow of Quiddenham, Norfolk. He was educated at Rugby School, then matriculated at Christ Church, Oxford, on 24 October 1798 and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) on 17 June 1802 and a Master of Arts (M.A.) on 13 December 1805. A student from December 1800 until 1812 a brilliant scholar of Greek, on 5 July 1810 he was created a Doctor of Civil Law (D.C.L.) on the occasion of Lord Grenville’s installation as Chancellor of the University of Oxford.

Lyttelton unsuccessfully contested Worcestershire in March 1806, but was returned in the following year, and represented the county until 1820 for the Whig party. His maiden speech was made on 27 February 1807 in favour of the rejection of the Westminster petition; and on 16 March he brought forward a motion (rejected by 46 votes) expressing regret at the substitution of the Duke of Portland’s administration for Lord Grenville’s. He attacked the new ministers, especially Spencer Perceval, for bigotry. He supported the naval expedition to Copenhagen in opposition to the bulk of his party, but voted with them on the motion of Samuel Whitbread for the production of papers relative to it.

Lyttelton felt the Whig jealousy of the influence of the court. In supporting John Christian Curwen’s bill for the prevention of the sale of seats, he suggested that the Duke of York and Albany, the late Commander-in-Chief of the Forces, had to some extent corrupted members of parliament; and in speaking on the budget resolutions of 1808 he declared his belief that the influence of the prerogative had increased. Again, on 4 May 1812, in a debate on the Royal Sinecure Offices Bill, he said that the Prince Regentwas surrounded by favourites. Nevertheless, Lyttelton in 1819 thought that the “revolutionary faction of the radicals” ought to be opposed. In the same session he thought an inquiry was needed into the Peterloo massacre.

Lyttelton advocated abolishing the system of having climbing boys sweep chimneys, and was a strong opponent of the property tax. He supported Richard Brinsley Sheridan’s motion of 6 February 1810 against the standing order for the exclusion of strangers from the house. In the same session, on 16 February, he opposed the voting of an annuity to the Duke of Wellington. He spoke strongly against the Alien Bill in 1816 and 1818.

On the death of his half-brother George Lyttelton, 2nd Baron Lyttelton, on 12 November 1828, Lyttelton succeeded to the title. He did not take much part in the debates of the House of Lords, but on 6 December 1831 he made an speech in favour of the Reform Bill in the debate on the address. He was appointed Lord-Lieutenant of Worcestershire on 29 May 1833.

Lyttelton died at the house of John Spencer, 3rd Earl Spencer, his brother-in-law, in Green Park, London, on 30 April 1837, aged 55.

Sydney Smith’s Letters of Peter Plymley were for a time ascribed to Lyttelton before their authorship was known. In August 1815, through his friendship with the captain, he obtained a passage on board the HMS Northumberland (1798) from Portsmouth to Plymouth to witness Napoleon’s departure into exile, and privately printed 52 copies of An Account of Napoleon Buonaparte’s Coming on Board H.M.S. Northumberland, 7 Aug. 1815; with Notes of Two Conversations Held with Him. He also printed a Catalogue of Pictures at Hagley (date of publication unknown), and published Private Devotions for School Boys.

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Lady Sarah Spencer

Lyttelton married Lady Sarah Spencer, daughter of George John, 2nd Earl Spencer, on 4 March 1813; she was for a time governess to the children of Queen Victoria and a Lady of the Bedchamber, and died 13 April 1870. They had three sons:

  • George William, who succeeded to the title;
  • Spencer (1818–1882), who became marshal of the ceremonies to the royal household; and
  • William Henry Lyttelton, canon of Gloucester;

They also had two daughters, Caroline (1816–1902), who died unmarried; and Lavinia (1821–1850), wife of Henry Glynne, rector of Hawarden.

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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.

William Lyttelton 1st Baron Lyttelton
24 December 1724 – 14 September 1808

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William Lyttelton

William Lyttelton 1st Baron Lyttelton was the youngest son of Sir Thomas Lyttelton, 4th Baronet.

As the youngest son, he did not expect to inherit the family estates and served in various government appointments. He became governor of colonial South Carolina in 1755. As such he was a major factor in the eventual story of America’s independence. His insistence on respecting the treaty rights of native peoples aggravated settlers on the frontier of South Carolina and led to a severe rift between those respecting the King’s directives and those opposed. The opposing factions eventually fought the civil war in South Carolina that was perhaps the key factor in America’s independence. He was appointed Governor of Jamaica in 1760, and envoy-extraordinary to Portugal in 1766. He was raised to the Irish peerage in 1776 as Baron Westcote.

As a result of the death without issue of his nephew Thomas Lyttelton, 2nd Baron Lyttelton in 1779, he inherited the family baronetcy and family estates in Frankley, Halesowen, and Hagley. However, the estates in Upper Arley passed to the late lord’s sister Lucy, wife of Arthur Annesley, 1st Earl of Mountnorris.

The title Baron Lyttelton was revived for Baron Westcote in 1794. He married twice. His first wife was Martha, daughter and coheir of James Macartney of Longford, nephew and coheir of Ambrose Aungier, 2nd Earl of Longford. They had three children including George Fulke, his successor. His second wife was Caroline Bristow, by whom he had two children including William Henry Lyttelton, 3rd Baron Lyttelton.

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