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Shrewsbury, Charles Talbot, 1st duke of

Shrewsbury, Charles Talbot, 1st duke of (1660–1718). The last person to hold the office of lord treasurer. Brought up a Roman catholic, Talbot converted to Anglicanism in 1679, and was one of the ‘Immortal Seven’ who, in 1688, signed the letter inviting William of Orange to invade. In 1689 he was appointed secretary of state, but became disillusioned with growing party strife, resigned in 1690, and went into opposition (being suspected of Jacobite sympathies). In 1694 he again became secretary of state and was created a duke (having succeeded as earl of Shrewsbury in 1668). Appointed lord chamberlain in 1699, he resigned on health grounds in 1700. He lived abroad (1700–7), chiefly in Rome, and upon his return became alienated from his former Whig associates. He was appointed lord chamberlain in the Tory ministry (1710–14), and lord-lieutenant of Ireland in 1713. On the dismissal of Harley, Queen Anne appointed Shrewsbury lord treasurer (30 July–11 October 1714), thwarting Bolingbroke's ambition, and upon the queen's death (1 August) he helped to secure the Hanoverian succession. His final office was again as lord chamberlain (1714–15).

Clyve Jones

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Shrewsbury, Charles Talbot, duke of

Charles Talbot Shrewsbury, duke of (shrōz´bərē, shrōōz´–), 1660–1718, English statesman. Brought up a Roman Catholic, he embraced Protestantism in 1679. A powerful Whig, he was one of the seven nobles who signed the invitation to William of Orange (later William III) to take the throne in 1688. After the Glorious Revolution, William made him (1689) secretary of state and privy councilor. He resigned in 1690, but William reappointed him in 1694 and made him duke of Shrewsbury. Despite persistent rumors of his correspondence with the Jacobites, it was against William's will that he resigned in 1699. Shrewsbury lived in Rome, uninvolved in politics, until 1706. On his return to England, he was won over by Robert Harley to the Tory cause, became lord chamberlain (1710), lord lieutenant of Ireland (1713), and lord treasurer (1714). He supported the Hanoverian succession and was briefly (1714–15) lord chamberlain under George I.

See biography by D. H. Somerville (1962).

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