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Lansdowne, Henry Petty-Fitzmaurice, 3rd marquis of

Lansdowne, Henry Petty-Fitzmaurice, 3rd marquis of (1780–1863). Statesman. Lansdowne was a Whig grandee and for decades Bowood in Wiltshire and Lansdowne House in London were headquarters of Whiggism. His father, better known as Shelburne, was prime minister 1782–3. Lansdowne succeeded his half-brother as marquis in 1809, having been chancellor of the Exchequer in the Ministry of All the Talents at the age of 26. He supported Canning's brief ministry in 1827, which caused a temporary breach with his less flexible Whig friends, and was home secretary in Goderich's administration 1827–8. He served as lord president of the council in Whig ministries 1830–4, 1835–41, and 1846–52, and remained in the cabinet without portfolio 1852–8, as guardian of the Foxite tradition. He was given the Garter in 1836 and refused a dukedom in 1857. Lansdowne was several times within reach of the premiership but lacked ambition and was perhaps disinclined to ministerial toil. By 1857 he was, according to Greville, the first of the cabinet to fall asleep.

J. A. Cannon

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