Richard Weston

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Portland, Richard Weston, 1st earl of (1577–1635). Of an Essex family, Weston trained at the Middle Temple and sat in the House of Commons for various constituencies until raised to the peerage. After administrative and diplomatic posts, he was appointed chancellor of the Exchequer in 1621 and held the post until 1628 when he became lord treasurer. In 1628 he was given a barony, appointed to the Garter in 1630, and advanced to the earldom in 1633. After Buckingham's murder, he was the most influential of Charles I's ministers. A catholic, he was sympathetic to Spain and determined to avoid war, partly to reduce reliance upon Parliament. Clarendon's long account is hostile, claiming that he was imperious, unpopular, and ambitious. But his policies appear moderate and Charles's difficulties began soon after Portland's death.

J. A. Cannon

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Weston, Richard. See Portland, 1st earl of.