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Westbury, Richard Bethell, 1st Baron

Westbury, Richard Bethell, 1st Baron (1800–73). Lawyer. Bethell was born in Bradford on Avon (Wilts.) and went to Wadham College, Oxford. After Middle Temple he began practising with great success. In 1851 he entered Parliament for Aylesbury as a Liberal, was made solicitor-general in 1852 and attorney-general in 1856. His ambition for the lord chancellorship was widely known and he obtained it, with a peerage, in 1861. He began a series of legal reforms but in 1865, peculation having been discovered in his office, a select committee found in him a ‘laxity of practice and want of caution’. One of Bethell's weapons had been vituperative sarcasm, together with overweening self-confidence, which did not help him in the crisis. He was censured by the House of Commons and obliged to resign.

J. A. Cannon

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Westbury

Westbury, residential village (1990 pop. 13,060), Nassau co., SE N.Y., on Long Island; settled 1650, inc. 1932. The State Univ. of New York's Old Westbury campus and Old Westbury Gardens are nearby. Harness races were held at Roosevelt Raceway in the village from 1940 to 1988.

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