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Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey, (13 March 1764 – 17 July 1845), known as Viscount Howick between 1806 and 1807, was a British politician who served as
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom The prime minister of the United Kingdom is the head of government The head of government is either the highest or second-highest official in the Executive (government), executive branch of a sovereign state, a federated state, or a ...
from 1830 to 1834. He was a descendant of the noble
House of Grey The House of Grey is an ancient English Nobility, noble family from Château de Creully, Creully in Normandy. The founder of the House of Grey was Anchetil de Greye, a Normans, Norman wikt:chevalier, chevalier and vassal of William FitzOsbern, 1st ...
and a member of the Whig Party. Grey was a long-time leader of multiple
reform movement A reform movement is a type of social movement Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and whether the exchange is Volition (psych ...
s, and as prime minister, his government was known for bringing about two notable reforms. The
Reform Act 1832 The Representation of the People Act 1832 (also known as the 1832 Reform Act, Great Reform Act or First Reform Act) was an Act of Parliament, Act of Parliament of the United Kingdom (indexed as 2 & 3 Will. IV c. 45) that introduced major chang ...
brought about parliamentary reform, bringing changes to the
House of Commons The House of Commons is the name for the elected lower house A lower house is one of two chambers Chambers may refer to: Places Canada: *Chambers Township, Ontario United States: *Chambers County, Alabama *Chambers, Arizona, an unincorpor ...
. His government also enacted the
Slavery Abolition Act 1833 The Slavery Abolition Act 1833 (3 & 4 Will. IV c. 73) abolished slavery Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who is someone forbidden to quit their service for another person (a slaver), while treate ...
, bringing about the abolition of slavery in most of the British Empire. Grey was a strong opponent of the foreign and domestic policies of
William Pitt the Younger William Pitt the Younger (28 May 175923 January 1806) was a prominent Tory A Tory () is a person who holds a political philosophy Political philosophy or political theory is the philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the st ...

William Pitt the Younger
in the 1790s. In 1807, he resigned as
foreign secretary The secretary of state for foreign, Commonwealth and development affairs, also referred to as the foreign secretary, is a Secretary of State (United Kingdom), secretary of state in the Government of the United Kingdom, with overall responsibili ...
to protest against King
George III George III (George William Frederick; 4 June 173829 January 1820) was King of Great Britain There have been 12 British monarchs since the political union of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on th ...

George III
's uncompromising rejection of
Catholic Emancipation #REDIRECT Catholic emancipation Catholic emancipation or Catholic relief was a process in the kingdoms of Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of ...
. Grey finally resigned in 1834 over disagreements in his cabinet regarding Ireland, and retired from politics. Scholars rank him highly among British prime ministers, believing that he averted much civil strife and enabled
Victorian Victorian or Victorians may refer to: 19th century * Victorian era, British history during Queen Victoria's 19th-century reign ** Victorian architecture ** Victorian house ** Victorian decorative arts ** Victorian fashion ** Victorian literature ...
progress.
Earl Grey tea Earl Grey tea is a tea blend which has been flavoured with the addition of oil of bergamot. The rind's fragrant oil is added to black tea to give Earl Grey its unique taste. Traditionally, Earl Grey was made from black tea Black tea is a ...
is named after him.


Early life

Descended from a long-established Northumbrian family seated at
Howick Hall Howick Hall, a Grade II* listed building in the village of Howick, Northumberland, England, is the ancestral seat of the Earl Grey, Earls Grey. It was the home of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Charles Grey, 2nd Earl G ...
, Grey was the second but eldest surviving son of General Charles Grey (1729–1807) and his wife, Elizabeth (1743/4–1822), daughter of George Grey of Southwick, co. Durham. He had four brothers and two sisters. He was educated at
Richmond School Richmond School & Sixth Form College, often referred to simply as Richmond School, is a Mixed-sex education, coeducational secondary school located in North Yorkshire, England. It was created by the merger of three schools, the oldest of which, ...
, followed by and
Trinity College, Cambridge Trinity College is a constituent college A collegiate university is a university A university ( la, universitas, 'a whole') is an educational institution, institution of higher education, higher (or Tertiary education, tertiary) education ...
, acquiring a facility in Latin and in English composition and declamation that enabled him to become one of the foremost parliamentary orators of his generation.


Titles

He became the second
Earl Grey Earl Grey is a title in the peerage of the United Kingdom. It was created in 1806 for General Charles Grey, 1st Earl Grey, Charles Grey, 1st Baron Grey. In 1801, he was given the title Baron Grey of Howick in the County of Northumberland, and in ...
, Viscount Howick and Baron Grey of Howick on 14 November 1807 upon the death of his father. Upon the death of his uncle on 30 March 1808 he became the third Baronet Grey of Howick.


Government career


Elected to Parliament, 1786

Grey was elected to Parliament for the Northumberland constituency on 14 September 1786, aged just 22. He became a part of the Whig circle of
Charles James Fox Charles James Fox (24 January 1749 – 13 September 1806), styled ''The Honourable'' from 1762, was a prominent British British Whig Party, Whig statesman whose parliamentary career spanned 38 years of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. H ...
,
Richard Brinsley Sheridan Richard Brinsley Butler Sheridan (30 October 17517 July 1816) was an Irish Irish most commonly refers to: * Someone or something of, from, or related to: ** Ireland, an island situated off the north-western coast of continental Europe ** No ...

Richard Brinsley Sheridan
, and the
Prince of Wales Prince of Wales ( cy, Tywysog Cymru, ) is a title traditionally and ceremonially granted to the heir apparent An heir apparent is a person who is first in an order of succession An order of succession or right of succession is the line o ...

Prince of Wales
, and soon became one of the major leaders of the Whig party. He was the youngest manager on the committee for prosecuting
Warren Hastings Warren Hastings (6 December 1732 – 22 August 1818), an English statesman, was the first Governor of the Presidency of Fort William (Bengal), the head of the Supreme Council of Bengal, and thereby the first ''de facto'' Governor-General of Ben ...

Warren Hastings
. The Whig historian wrote in 1841: Grey was also noted for advocating Parliamentary reform and
Catholic emancipation #REDIRECT Catholic emancipation Catholic emancipation or Catholic relief was a process in the kingdoms of Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of ...
. His affair with
Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire (née Spencer; ; 7 June 1757 – 30 March 1806), was an English socialite, political organizer, style icon, author, and activist. Of English nobility, noble birth from the Spencer family, married into th ...
, herself an active political campaigner, did him little harm although it nearly caused her to be divorced by her husband.


Foreign secretary, 1806–1807

In 1806, Grey, by then Lord Howick owing to his father's elevation to the peerage as
Earl Grey Earl Grey is a title in the peerage of the United Kingdom. It was created in 1806 for General Charles Grey, 1st Earl Grey, Charles Grey, 1st Baron Grey. In 1801, he was given the title Baron Grey of Howick in the County of Northumberland, and in ...
, became a part of the
Ministry of All the Talents The Ministry of All the Talents was a national unity government#REDIRECT National unity government {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from other capitalisation ... in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northe ...
(a coalition of
Foxite Foxite was a late 18th-century British political label for Whig followers of Charles James Fox Charles James Fox (24 January 1749 – 13 September 1806), styled ''The Honourable'' from 1762, was a prominent British British Whig Party, Whig ...
Whigs, Grenvillites, and ) as
First Lord of the Admiralty The First Lord of the Admiralty, or formally the Office of the First Lord of the Admiralty, was the political head of the English and later British Royal Navy The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare Naval warfare is ...
. Following Fox's death later that year, Howick took over both as
foreign secretary The secretary of state for foreign, Commonwealth and development affairs, also referred to as the foreign secretary, is a Secretary of State (United Kingdom), secretary of state in the Government of the United Kingdom, with overall responsibili ...
and as leader of the Whigs. The ministry broke up in 1807 when George III blocked Catholic Emancipation legislation and required that all ministers individually sign a pledge, which Howick refused to do, that they would not "propose any further concessions to the Catholics".


Years in opposition, 1807–1830

The government fell from power the next year, and, after a brief period as a member of parliament for Appleby from May to July 1807, Howick went to the Lords, succeeding his father as Earl Grey. He continued in opposition for the next 23 years. There were times during this period when Grey came close to joining the Government. In 1811,
the Prince Regent George IV (George Augustus Frederick; 12 August 1762 – 26 June 1830) was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover from the death of his father, King George III, on 29 January 1820 until his own death ten yea ...

the Prince Regent
tried to court Grey and his ally William Grenville to join the
Spencer Perceval Spencer Perceval (1 November 1762 – 11 May 1812) was a British statesman and barrister. He was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from October 1809 until Assassination of Spencer Perceval, his assassination in May 1812. Perceval is the onl ...

Spencer Perceval
ministry following the resignation of
Lord Wellesley Richard Colley Wellesley, 1st Marquess Wellesley of Norragh, (20 June 1760 – 26 September 1842) was an Anglo-Irish politician and colonial administrator Colonialism is a practice or policy of control by one people or power over other peo ...

Lord Wellesley
. Grey and Grenville declined because the Prince Regent refused to make concessions regarding Catholic Emancipation. Grey's relationship with the Prince was strained further when his estranged daughter and heiress, , turned to him for advice on how to avoid her father's choice of husband for her. On the
Napoleonic Wars The Napoleonic Wars (1803–1815) were a series of major World war, global conflicts pitting the First French Empire, French Empire and its allies, led by Napoleon, Napoleon I, against a fluctuating array of Coalition forces of the Napoleonic W ...
, Grey took the standard Whig party line. After being initially enthused by the Spanish uprising against Napoleon, Grey became convinced of the French emperor's invincibility following the defeat and death of Sir John Moore, the leader of the British forces in the
Peninsular War The Peninsular War (1807–1814) was the military conflict War is an intense armed conflict between State (polity), states, governments, Society, societies, or paramilitary groups such as Mercenary, mercenaries, Insurgency, insurg ...

Peninsular War
. Grey was then slow to recognise the military successes of Moore's successor, the
Duke of Wellington Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, (1 May 1769 – 14 September 1852) was an Anglo-Irish people, Anglo-Irish soldier and Tories (British political party), Tory statesman who was one of the leading military and political fi ...
. When Napoleon first abdicated in 1814, Grey objected to the restoration of the Bourbons' authoritarian monarchy; and when Napoleon was reinstalled the following year, he said that the change was an internal French matter. In 1826, believing that the Whig party no longer paid any attention to his opinions, Grey stood down as leader in favour of Lord Lansdowne. The following year, when
George Canning George Canning (11 April 17708 August 1827) was a British Tory A Tory () is a person who holds a political philosophy Political philosophy or political theory is the philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the study of gener ...

George Canning
succeeded
Lord Liverpool Robert Banks Jenkinson, 2nd Earl of Liverpool, (7 June 1770 – 4 December 1828) was a British Tory The Tories were a political faction Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with making decisions in gro ...

Lord Liverpool
as prime minister, it was therefore Lansdowne and not Grey who was asked to join the Government, which needed strengthening following the resignations of
Robert Peel Sir Robert Peel, 2nd Baronet, (5 February 1788 – 2 July 1850) was a British Conservative Party (UK), Conservative statesman who served twice as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1834–1835 and 1841–1846) simultaneously serving as Cha ...

Robert Peel
and the
Duke of Wellington Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, (1 May 1769 – 14 September 1852) was an Anglo-Irish people, Anglo-Irish soldier and Tories (British political party), Tory statesman who was one of the leading military and political fi ...

Duke of Wellington
. When Wellington became prime minister in 1828, George IV (as the Prince Regent had become) singled out Grey as the one person he could not appoint to the Government.


Prime minister (1830–1834)

In 1830, following the death of George IV and when the
Duke of Wellington Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, (1 May 1769 – 14 September 1852) was an Anglo-Irish people, Anglo-Irish soldier and Tories (British political party), Tory statesman who was one of the leading military and political fi ...

Duke of Wellington
resigned on the question of Parliamentary reform, the Whigs finally returned to power, with Grey as prime minister. In 1831, he was made a member of the
Order of the Garter (Shame on him who thinks evil of it) , eligibility = , criteria = At Her Majesty's pleasure , status = Currently constituted , founder = Edward III Edward III (13 November 131221 June 1377), also known as Edward ...
. His term was a notable one, seeing passage of the
Reform Act 1832 The Representation of the People Act 1832 (also known as the 1832 Reform Act, Great Reform Act or First Reform Act) was an Act of Parliament, Act of Parliament of the United Kingdom (indexed as 2 & 3 Will. IV c. 45) that introduced major chang ...
, which finally saw the reform of the House of Commons, and the
abolition of slavery Abolitionism, or the abolitionist movement, was the movement to end slavery Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who is someone forbidden to quit their service for another person (a slaver), w ...
throughout almost all of the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
in 1833 with the Slavery Abolition Act. As the years had passed, however, Grey had become more conservative, and he was cautious about initiating more far-reaching reforms, particularly since he knew that the King was at best only a reluctant supporter of reform. Grey contributed to a plan to found a new colony in South Australia: in 1831 a "Proposal to His Majesty's Government for founding a colony on the Southern Coast of Australia" was prepared under the auspices of
Robert Gouger Robert Gouger (; 26 June 1802 – 4 August 1846) was one of the founders of South Australia and first Colonial Secretary of South Australia. Early life Gouger was the fifth son of nine children of George Gouger (1763-1802), who was a prosperous ...
, Anthony Bacon,
Jeremy Bentham Jeremy Bentham (; 15 February 1748 Old_Style_and_New_Style_dates">O.S._4_February_1747.html" ;"title="Old_Style_and_New_Style_dates.html" ;"title="nowiki/>Old Style and New Style dates">O.S. 4 February 1747">Old_Style_and_New_Style_dates.htm ...

Jeremy Bentham
and Grey, but its ideas were considered too radical, and it was unable to attract the required investment. In the same year, Grey was appointed to serve on the Government Commission upon Emigration (which was wound up in 1832). It was the issue of Ireland which precipitated the end of Grey's premiership in 1834. Lord Anglesey, the Viceroy of Ireland, preferred conciliatory reform including the partial redistribution of the income from the church tithe to the Catholic church and away from the established Protestant one, a policy known as "appropriation". The
chief secretary for Ireland The Chief Secretary for Ireland was a key political office in the British administration in Ireland. Nominally subordinate to the Lord Lieutenant A lord-lieutenant () is the British monarch's personal representative in each lieutenancy ...
, Lord Stanley, however, preferred coercive measures. The cabinet was divided and when
Lord John Russell John Russell, 1st Earl Russell, (18 August 1792 – 28 May 1878), known by his courtesy title Courtesy (from the word ''courteis'', from the 12th century) is gentle politeness and courtly manners. In the Middle Ages In the his ...

Lord John Russell
drew attention in the House of Commons to their differences over appropriation, Stanley and others resigned. This triggered Grey to retire from public life, leaving
Lord Melbourne William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne, (15 March 177924 November 1848), in some sources called Henry William Lamb, was a British Whig The Whigs were a political faction Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated ...

Lord Melbourne
as his successor. Unlike most politicians, he seems to have genuinely preferred a private life; colleagues remarked caustically that he threatened to resign at every setback. Grey returned to Howick but kept a close eye on the policies of the new cabinet under Melbourne, whom he, and especially his family, regarded as a mere understudy until he began to act in ways of which they disapproved. Grey became more critical as the decade went on, being particularly inclined to see the hand of
Daniel O'Connell Daniel O'Connell ( ga, Dónall Ó Conaill; 6 August 1775 – 15 May 1847), hailed in his time as The Liberator, was the acknowledged political leader of Ireland's Roman Catholic majority in the first half of the 19th century. His mobilisa ...

Daniel O'Connell
behind the scenes and blaming Melbourne for subservience to the Radicals with whom he identified the Irish patriot. He made no allowances for Melbourne's need to keep the radicals on his side to preserve his shrinking majority in the Commons, and in particular he resented any slight on his own great achievement, the Reform Act, which he saw as a final solution of the question for the foreseeable future. He continually stressed its conservative nature. As he declared in his last great public speech, at the Grey Festival organised in his honour at
Edinburgh Edinburgh (; sco, Edinburgh; gd, Dùn Èideann ) is the capital city of Scotland and one of its 32 Council areas of Scotland, council areas. Historically part of the county of Midlothian (interchangeably Edinburghshire before 1921), it is ...

Edinburgh
in September 1834, its purpose was to strengthen and preserve the established constitution, to make it more acceptable to the people at large, and especially the middle classes, who had been the principal beneficiaries of the Reform Act, and to establish the principle that future changes would be gradual, "according to the increased intelligence of the people, and the necessities of the times". It was the speech of a conservative statesman.E. A. Smith,
Grey, Charles, second Earl Grey (1764–1845)
, ''Oxford Dictionary of National Biography'', Oxford University Press, September 2004; online edn, May 2009, accessed 13 February 2010.


Lord Grey's ministry, November 1830 – July 1834

*Lord Grey —
First Lord of the Treasury The First Lord of the Treasury is the head of the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury, commission exercising the ancient office of Lord High Treasurer in the United Kingdom, and is by convention also the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, pri ...
and
Leader of the House of Lords The Leader of the House of Lords is a member of the Cabinet of the United Kingdom The Cabinet of the United Kingdom is a group of the most senior ministers of the crown in the government of the United Kingdom. A committee of the Privy C ...
*
Lord Brougham Henry Peter Brougham, 1st Baron Brougham and Vaux, (; 19 September 1778 – 7 May 1868) was a British statesman who became Lord High Chancellor and played a prominent role in passing the 1832 Reform Act and 1833 Slavery Abolition Act. ...
 —
Lord Chancellor The Lord Chancellor, formally the Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain, is the highest-ranking among the Great Officers of State In the United Kingdom, the Great Officers of State are traditional ministers of The Crown who either inheri ...
* Lord Lansdowne
Lord President of the Council The Lord President of the Council is the fourth of the Great Officers of State (United Kingdom), Great Officers of State of the United Kingdom, ranking below the Lord High Treasurer but above the Lord Privy Seal, Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal. ...
*
Lord Durham Image:John George Lambton, 1st Earl of Durham by Thomas Phillips.jpg, 200px, John George Lambton, 1st Earl of Durham. Earl of Durham is a title in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. It was created in 1833 for the prominent British Whig Party, Whi ...
 —
Lord Privy Seal The Lord Privy Seal (or, more formally, the Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal) is the fifth of the Great Officers of State In the United Kingdom, the Great Officers of State are traditional ministers of The Crown who either inherit their posit ...
*
Lord Melbourne William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne, (15 March 177924 November 1848), in some sources called Henry William Lamb, was a British Whig The Whigs were a political faction Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated ...

Lord Melbourne
Secretary of State for the Home Department The home secretary, officially the secretary of state for the Home Department, is a secretary of state in the Government of the United Kingdom ga, Rialtas na Ríochta Aontaithe sco, Govrenment o the Unitit Kinrick , image = HM Governm ...
*
Lord Palmerston Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, (20 October 1784 – 18 October 1865) was a British statesman, who was twice Prime Minister of the United Kingdom in the mid-19th century. Palmerston dominated British foreign policy during the period ...

Lord Palmerston
 —
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs The secretary of state for foreign, Commonwealth and development affairs, also referred to as the foreign secretary, is a secretary of state in the Government of the United Kingdom The Government of the United Kingdom, domestically refe ...
* Lord Goderich
Secretary of State for War and the Colonies The Secretary of State for War and the Colonies was a Cabinet of the United Kingdom, British cabinet-level position responsible for the army and the British colonies (other than India). The Department was created in 1801. In 1854 it was split into ...
* Sir James Graham
First Lord of the Admiralty The First Lord of the Admiralty, or formally the Office of the First Lord of the Admiralty, was the political head of the English and later British Royal Navy The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare Naval warfare is ...
*
Lord Althorp John Charles Spencer, 3rd Earl Spencer, (30 May 1782 – 1 October 1845), styled Viscount Althorp from 1783 to 1834, was a British wikt:statesman, statesman. He was Chancellor of the Exchequer under Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey, Lord Grey and Wil ...
Chancellor of the Exchequer The chancellor of the Exchequer, often abbreviated to the chancellor, is a senior minister of the Crown within the Government of the United Kingdom, and the chief executive officer of HM Treasury, Her Majesty's Treasury. As one of the four Grea ...
and
Leader of the House of Commons The Leader of the House of Commons is generally a member or attendee of the cabinet of the United Kingdom. The House of Commons devotes approximately three-quarters of its time to debating and explaining government business, such as Bill (law), b ...
* Charles Grant
President of the Board of Control The President of the Board of Control was a British government official in the late 18th and early 19th century responsible for overseeing the British East India Company The East India Company (EIC), also known as the Honourable East India ...
* Lord Holland
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster is a ministerial office in the Government of the United Kingdom The Government of the United Kingdom, domestically referred to as Her Majesty's Government, is the central government of the United ...
* The Duke of Richmond
Postmaster General A Postmaster General, in Anglosphere The Anglosphere is a group of English-speaking nations that share common cultural and historical ties to the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as ...
*
Lord CarlisleLord Carlisle may refer to: * Mark Carlisle, Baron Carlisle of Bucklow * Earl of Carlisle, a title that has been created three times in the Peerage of England See also

* Alex Carlile, Baron Carlile of Berriew {{disambiguation, tndis ...

Lord Carlisle
Minister without Portfolio A minister without portfolio is either a government minister A minister is a politician who heads a ministry (government department), ministry, making and implementing decisions on policies in conjunction with the other ministers. In some juris ...
Changes *June 1831 —
Lord John Russell John Russell, 1st Earl Russell, (18 August 1792 – 28 May 1878), known by his courtesy title Courtesy (from the word ''courteis'', from the 12th century) is gentle politeness and courtly manners. In the Middle Ages In the his ...

Lord John Russell
, the
Paymaster of the Forces The Paymaster of the Forces was a position in the British government. The office was established in 1661, one year after the Restoration (1660), Restoration of the Monarchy to King Charles II, and was responsible for part of the financing of the ...
, and , the
Chief Secretary for Ireland The Chief Secretary for Ireland was a key political office in the British administration in Ireland. Nominally subordinate to the Lord Lieutenant A lord-lieutenant () is the British monarch's personal representative in each lieutenancy ...
, join the Cabinet. *April 1833 — Lord Goderich, now Lord Ripon, succeeds Lord Durham as Lord Privy Seal. Edward Smith-Stanley succeeds Ripon as
Secretary of State for War and the Colonies The Secretary of State for War and the Colonies was a Cabinet of the United Kingdom, British cabinet-level position responsible for the army and the British colonies (other than India). The Department was created in 1801. In 1854 it was split into ...
. His successor as Chief Secretary for Ireland is not in the Cabinet. Edward Ellice, the
Secretary at War The Secretary at War was a political position in the Kingdom of England, English and later British government, with some responsibility over the administration and organization of the Army, but not over military policy. The Secretary at War ran t ...
, joins the Cabinet. *June 1834 — Thomas Spring Rice succeeds Stanley as Colonial Secretary. Lord Carlisle succeeds Ripon as Lord Privy Seal. succeeds Graham as First Lord of the Admiralty. The Duke of Richmond leaves the Cabinet. His successor as Postmaster General is not in the Cabinet.
Charles Poulett Thomson Charles Poulett Thomson, 1st Baron Sydenham, (13 September 1799 – 19 September 1841) was a British businessman, politician, diplomat and the first Governor General of the united Province of Canada.
, the
President of the Board of Trade The president of the Board of Trade is head of the Board of Trade The Board of Trade is a British government body concerned with commerce and industry, currently within the Department for International Trade. Its full title is The Lords of the C ...
, and James Abercrombie, the
Master of the Mint Master of the Mint is a title within the Royal Mint The Royal Mint is a government-owned Mint (facility), mint that produces coins for the United Kingdom. Operating under the legal name ''The Royal Mint Limited'', the mint is a limited company ...
, join the Cabinet.


Personal life

Before his marriage, Grey had an affair with the married
Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire (née Spencer; ; 7 June 1757 – 30 March 1806), was an English socialite, political organizer, style icon, author, and activist. Of English nobility, noble birth from the Spencer family, married into th ...
. Grey met Cavendish while attending a Whig society meeting in
Devonshire House Devonshire House in Piccadilly Piccadilly () is a road in the City of Westminster City of Westminster is an Inner London, inner London City status in the United Kingdom, city and London boroughs, borough. It has been the capital city, ...

Devonshire House
, and they became lovers. In 1791 she became pregnant and was sent to France, where she gave birth to an
illegitimate Legitimacy, in traditional Western common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written opi ...
daughter, who was raised by Grey's parents: *
Eliza Courtney Eliza Courtney (20 February 1792 – 2 May 1859) was the illegitimate daughter of the British Whig Party, Whig politician and future Prime Minister Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey, and socialite Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, Georgia ...

Eliza Courtney
(20 February 1792 – 2 May 1859). She married
Robert Ellice General (United Kingdom), General Robert Ellice (13 October 1784 – 18 June 1856) was a British Army officer. Military career Born the son of Alexander Ellice and brother of Edward Ellice (merchant), Edward Ellice, Ellice was commissioned as an ...
.


Marriage and legitimate children

On 18 November 1794, Grey married Mary Elizabeth Ponsonby (1776–1861), only daughter of
William Ponsonby, 1st Baron Ponsonby William Brabazon Ponsonby, 1st Baron Ponsonby (of Imokilly), Privy Council of Ireland, PC (Ire) (15 September 17445 November 1806) was a leading Irish British Whig Party, Whig politician, being a member of the Irish House of Commons, and, after 1 ...
of Imokilly and Louisa Molesworth. The marriage was a fruitful one; between 1796 and 1819 the couple had ten sons and six daughters: *unnamed daughter (stillborn, 1796) *Louisa Elizabeth Grey (7 April 1797 – 26 November 1841). She married
John Lambton, 1st Earl of Durham John George Lambton, 1st Earl of Durham, GCB, PC (12 April 1792 – 28 July 1840), also known as "Radical Jack" and commonly referred to in Canadian history texts simply as Lord Durham, was a British Whig statesman, colonial administrator, Go ...
, on 9 December 1816. They had five children, including Charles William, Grey's favourite grandson, who died young. *Elizabeth Grey (10 July 1798 – 8 November 1880). She married
John Crocker Bulteel John Crocker Bulteel (1793–1843) of Flete House, Fleet, Holbeton, in South Devon, was a Whigs (British political party), Whig MP for South Devon (UK Parliament constituency), South Devon 1832-4 and was Sheriff of Devon in 1841. He was Master of ...
on 13 May 1826. They had five children. *Caroline Grey (30 August 1799 – 28 April 1875). She married Captain
George Barrington George Barrington (14 May 1755 – 27 December 1804) was an Irish-born pickpocket, popular London socialite, Australian pioneer (following his transportation Transport (commonly used in the U.K.), or transportation (used in the U.S.), i ...
on 15 January 1827. They had two children *Georgiana Grey (17 February 1801 – 13 September 1900), who never married. * Henry George Grey, 3rd Earl Grey (28 December 1802 – 9 October 1894). He married Maria Copley on 9 August 1832. * General Charles Grey (15 March 1804 – 31 March 1870). He married Caroline Farquhar on 26 July 1836. They had seven children, including
Albert Grey, 4th Earl Grey Albert Henry George Grey, 4th Earl Grey, (28 November 185129 August 1917) was a British nobleman and politician who served as Governor General of Canada The governor general of Canada (french: gouverneure générale du Canada) is the fed ...
. * Admiral Sir Frederick William Grey (23 August 1805 – 2 May 1878). He married Barbarina Sullivan on 20 July 1846. * Mary Grey (2 May 1807 – 6 July 1884). She married
Charles Wood, 1st Viscount Halifax Charles Wood, 1st Viscount Halifax, Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath, GCB, Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, PC (20 December 1800 – 8 August 1885), known as Sir Charles Wood, 3rd Bt, between 1846 and 1866, was a British ...
, on 29 July 1829. They had seven children. *William Grey (13 May 1808 – 11 February 1815), who died at the age of six. *Admiral George Grey (16 May 1809 – 3 October 1891). He married Jane Stuart (daughter of General Sir Patrick Stuart) on 20 January 1845. They had eleven children. *Thomas Grey (29 December 1810 – 8 July 1826), who died at the age of fifteen. *Rev. John Grey MA, DD (2 March 1812 – 11 November 1895), Canon of Durham, Rector of Houghton-le-Spring. He married Lady Georgiana Hervey (daughter of
Frederick William Hervey, 1st Marquess of Bristol Frederick William Hervey, 1st Marquess of Bristol (2 October 1769 – 15 February 1859), styled Lord Hervey between 1796 and 1803 and known as The Earl of Bristol between 1803 and 1826, was a British peer. Biography Early life Frederick William ...
) in July 1836. They had three children. He remarried Helen Spalding (maternal granddaughter of John Henry Upton, 1st Viscount Templetown) on 11 April 1874. *Rev. Francis Richard Grey MA (31 March 1813 – 22 March 1890), Canon of Durham, Canon of Newcastle, Rector of Morpeth. He married Lady Elizabeth Howard, daughter of
George Howard, 6th Earl of Carlisle George may refer to: People * George (given name) George (in English or in Romanian) is a masculine given name derived from the Greek language, Greek Georgios, Geōrgios (; ). The name gained popularity due to its association with the Christia ...

George Howard, 6th Earl of Carlisle
on 12 August 1840. *Captain Henry Cavendish Grey (16 October 1814 – 5 September 1880) *William George Grey (15 February 1819 – 19 December 1865). He married Theresa Stedink on 20 September 1858.


Later years and death

Grey spent his last years in contented, if sometimes fretful, retirement at Howick with his books, his family, and his dogs. The one great personal blow he suffered in old age was the death of his favourite grandson, Charles, at the age of 13. Grey became physically feeble in his last years and died quietly in his bed on 17 July 1845, forty-four years to the day since going to live at Howick. He was buried in the Church of St Michael and All Angels there on the 26th in the presence of his family, close friends, and the labourers on his estate. His biographer G. M. Trevelyan argues:


Legacy

Grey is commemorated by
Grey's Monument Grey's Monument is a Grade I listed A listed building, or listed structure, is one that has been placed on one of the four statutory lists maintained by Historic England in England, Historic Environment Scotland in Scotland, in Wales, and th ...
in the centre of
Newcastle upon Tyne Newcastle upon Tyne ( , ), often simply Newcastle, is the largest city A city is a large .Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedi ...

Newcastle upon Tyne
, which consists of a
statue A statue is a free-standing sculpture in which the realistic, full-length figures of persons or animals are carved or Casting (metalworking), cast in a durable material such as wood, metal or stone. Typical statues are life-sized or close to ...

statue
of Lord Grey standing atop a high
column A column or pillar in architecture and structural engineering is a structural element that transmits, through compression (physical), compression, the weight of the structure above to other structural elements below. In other words, a column is ...

column
. The monument was damaged by lightning in 1941 and the statue's head was knocked off. The monument lends its name to
Monument Metro station Monument is a Tyne and Wear Metro station, serving the city of Newcastle upon Tyne in Tyne and Wear. It joined the network on 15 November 1981, following the opening of the third phase of the network, between Haymarket Metro station, Haymarket a ...
on the
Tyne and Wear Metro The Tyne and Wear Metro is an overground and underground light rail Light rail transit (LRT) is a form of passenger urban rail transit Urban rail transit is an all-encompassing term for various types of local rail Rail or rails may ref ...
, located directly underneath. Grey Street in Newcastle upon Tyne, which runs south-east from the monument, is also named after Grey.
Durham University , mottoeng = Her foundations are upon the holy hills ( Psalm 87:1) , established = (university status) , type = Public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the ...

Durham University
's is named after Grey, who as prime minister in 1832 supported the Act of Parliament that established the university.
Earl Grey tea Earl Grey tea is a tea blend which has been flavoured with the addition of oil of bergamot. The rind's fragrant oil is added to black tea to give Earl Grey its unique taste. Traditionally, Earl Grey was made from black tea Black tea is a ...
, a blend which uses bergamot oil to flavour the brew, is commonly believed to be named after Grey, although the term was apparently first used decades after his death.


In film

Grey is portrayed by
Dominic Cooper Dominic Edward Cooper (born 2 June 1978) is an English actor. He is known for his portrayal of comic book characters Jesse Custer on the AMC (TV channel), AMC show ''Preacher (TV series), Preacher'' (2016–2019) and young Howard Stark in the M ...

Dominic Cooper
in the 2008 film '' The Duchess'', directed by
Saul Dibb Saul Dibb (born 18 August 1968) is an English director and screenwriter. His father is the documentary maker Mike Dibb. Born in London London is the capital city, capital and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom, largest city of Engla ...
and starring
Keira Knightley Keira Christina Knightley (; born 26 March 1985) is a British actress. She has starred in both independent films and big-budget Blockbuster (entertainment), blockbusters, and is particularly noted for her roles in Historical drama, period dram ...

Keira Knightley
and
Ralph Fiennes Ralph Nathaniel Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes ( ; born 22 December 1962) is an English actor, film producer, and director. A Shakespeare William Shakespeare (bapt. 26 April 1564 – 23 April 1616) was an English playwright, poet and actor, ...

Ralph Fiennes
. The film is based on Amanda Foreman's biography of Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire.


References


Further reading

* Brett, Peter. "Grey, Charles, 2nd Earl Grey" in * * * Pennington, D.H."British Prime Ministers : II Earl Grey." ''History Today'' (May 1951) 1#5 pp 21-27 online]. * Phillips, John A., and Charles Wetherell. "The Great Reform Act of 1832 and the political modernization of England." ''American historical review'' 100.2 (1995): 411–436
in JSTOR
*
online free


Other sources

* * * * * Temperley, Harold and L.M. Penson, eds. ''Foundations of British Foreign Policy: From Pitt (1792) to Salisbury (1902)'' (1938), primary source
online


External links

* * * * * {{DEFAULTSORT:Grey, Charles Grey, 2nd Earl 1764 births 1845 deaths 19th-century prime ministers of the United Kingdom Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom British Secretaries of State for Foreign Affairs Lords of the Admiralty Members of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom Whig (British political party) MPs People educated at Eton College Alumni of Trinity College, Cambridge Knights of the Garter People from Howick, Northumberland Earls Grey
Charles Charles is a masculine given name A given name (also known as a first name or forename) is the part of a personal name A personal name, or full name, in onomastic Onomastics or onomatology is the study of the etymology, histor ...
Members of the Parliament of the United Kingdom for Tavistock Members of the Parliament of Great Britain for English constituencies Leaders of the House of Commons of the United Kingdom Leaders of the House of Lords British MPs 1784–1790 British MPs 1790–1796 British MPs 1796–1800 UK MPs 1801–1802 UK MPs 1802–1806 UK MPs 1806–1807 UK MPs 1807–1812 UK MPs who inherited peerages Politicians awarded knighthoods