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Henry Luttrell, 2nd Earl of Carhampton

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Earl of Carhampton
The Earl of Carhampton
Born7 August 1743
Died25 April 1821(1821-04-25) (aged 77)
Allegiance Kingdom of Great Britain
Flag of the British Army.svg
British Army
Years of service1757–1798
Commands heldIreland
Battles/warsSeven Years' War
United Irishmen Rebellion

General Henry Lawes Luttrell, 2nd Earl of Carhampton PC (7 August 1743 – 25 April 1821) was an Anglo-Irish politician and soldier. He was the son of Simon Luttrell, 1st Earl of Carhampton and brother-in-law of Prince Henry, Duke of Cumberland and Strathearn. He had command in Ireland during the 1798 rebellion, and was renowned for a violent counter-insurgency untrammelled by legal considerations.


Henry Luttrell was the scion of an Anglo-Irish landed family, descendants of Sir Geoffrey de Luterel, who established Luttrellstown Castle, County Dublin, in the early 13th century.[1] Educated at Westminster School and Christ Church, Oxford, Luttrell was commissioned into the 48th Regiment of Foot in 1757.[2] Two years later he became lieutenant of the 34th Regiment of Foot.

Father and son, both accounted "notorious womanizers", had a bitter relationship. His father once challenged Luttrell to a duel, but he declined, observing that his father was not a gentleman.[3]

Luttrell, described as "strong in body, if not in mind", achieved a reputation for bravery as a soldier during the Seven Years' War,[4] becoming Deputy Adjutant-General of the British Forces in Portugal. In 1768 he became a Tory Member of Parliament in for the village of Bossiney, Cornwall.[5]

Service to the Tory Ministry against Wilkes

With the support of the Grafton ministry and of the Court, in 1769 Luttrell stood in Middlesex against John Wilkes, the radical and popular figure who had already been the constituency's three-time democratic choice. Luttrell lost the poll (1,143 votes to 269) but was seated in Parliament, Wilkes having once again been barred as an adjudged felon.[6] As a result of the affair, for some months, Luttrell dared not appear in the street, and was "the most unpopular man in the House of Commons".[7]

The government rewarded Luttrell by appointing him Adjutant General for Ireland in 1770. He continued to sit in the Commons, where he described the Whigs in their opposition to the conduct of the American War, as "the abetters of treason and rebellion combined purposely for the ruin of their country."[8]

Ireland, the Case of Mary Neal and the crushing of the 1798 rebellion

Luttrell became active in Irish politics and between 1783 and 1787, he sat in the Irish House of Commons for Old Leighlin.[2] On his father's death in 1787, he succeeded to the earldom of Carhampton and other titles.[2] He became Colonel of the 6th Dragoon Guards and Lieutenant-General of the Ordnance in Ireland.[2]

In 1788, Luttrell was publicly accused in Dublin of the rape of a 12 year-old girl. Having been paid to deliver a message, Mary Neal claimed she was bundled into a brothel and there assaulted throughout the night by Luttrell. The keeper of the house, Maria Llewellyn, was charged in a case marked by accusations of witness tampering, the death in prison of Mary's mother and new-born baby sister and by the insinuation that Mary was already working as a prostitute. The affair became a cause célèbre with the public intervention of Archibald Hamilton Rowan (later United Irishman). To clear Mary's name he brought her to Dublin Castle to see the Lord Lieutenant, the Earl of Westmorland. Westmorland, unmoved, pardoned Llewellyn and set her at liberty.[9]

Luttrell was never asked to answer for raping Mary Neal. He re-entered the Westminster Parliament as Member for Plympton Erle in 1790.[2] Then in 1796 he was made Commander-in-Chief, Ireland,[2] and in 1798 he led the British suppression of the United Irishmen Rebellion.[2] His command had the unusual distinction of being upbraided by his successor as Commander in Chief, Sir Ralph Abercromby for an army "in a state of licentiousness, which must render it formidable to every one but the enemy".[10]

When the Dublin Post of 2 May 1811 erroneously reported his death, he demanded a retraction which they printed under the headline Public Disappointment.[11]

He purchased an estate at Painshill Park in Surrey and re-entered parliament in June 1817 as Member for Ludgershall and held the seat until his death.[2]


He briefly married Elizabeth Mullen in 1759, and had a daughter, Harriet Luttrell. This marriage was later annulled.[12]

He married Jane Boyd in 1776, but they had no children and was succeeded by his brother John.[2]


  1. ^ Enchanting Ireland Archived 7 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i A. F. Blackstock, ‘Luttrell, Henry Lawes, second earl of Carhampton (1737–1821)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, Jan 2008
  3. ^ Cash, Arthur (1998). John Wilkes, The Scandalous Father of Civil Liberty. New Haven: Yale University Press. p. 253.
  4. ^ Cash (1998), p. 253
  5. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs  
  6. ^ The rejection of Wilkes and selection of Luttrell by the House of Commons preoccupied parliament and the nation. The debates were emotional, and illustrated the weakness of the ministries leading up to the American revolution. See e.g. 16 Parliamentary History of England, London: Hansard, 1813, pp. 424–28, 532–96. At the polls, Luttrell received 296 votes to 1143 for Wilkes, as his counsel acknowledged, id. at 589, at a hearing before commons rejected a petition by the voters who said the majority "would not by any means have chosen to be represented by the said Henry Lawes Luttrell, esq.; ... he cannot sit as the representative of said county in parliament, without manifest infringement of the rights and privileges" of the voters. Id. at 588. Note this source is available for free download from Google books.
  7. ^ Cash (1998), p. 253
  8. ^ Cash (1998), p. 253
  9. ^ Whelan, Fergus (1998). God-provoking Democrat, The Remarkable Life of Archibald Hamilton Rowan. Stilorgan, Dublin: New Island. pp. 40–46. ISBN 9781848404601.
  10. ^ Pakenham, Thomas (1998). The Year of Liberty,The Great Irish Rebellion of 1798. New York: Times Books, Random House. p. 24. ISBN 0812930886.
  11. ^ Ask about Ireland Archived 30 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^

External links

Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Edward Wortley Montagu
Lord Mount Stuart
Member of Parliament for Bossiney
With: Lord Mount Stuart
Succeeded by
Lord Mount Stuart
Sir George Osborn, Bt
Preceded by
John Wilkes
John Glynn
Member of Parliament for Middlesex
With: John Glynn
Succeeded by
John Glynn
John Wilkes
Preceded by
Lord Mount Stuart
Sir George Osborn, Bt
Member of Parliament for Bossiney
With: Lord Mount Stuart 1774–1776
Charles Stuart 1776–1784
Succeeded by
Charles Stuart
Bamber Gascoyne
Preceded by
John Stephenson
John Pardoe
Member of Parliament for Plympton Erle
With: Philip Metcalfe
Succeeded by
Philip Metcalfe
William Manning
Parliament of Ireland
Preceded by
Robert Jephson
Sir John Blaquiere
Member of Parliament for Old Leighlin
With: Hon. Arthur Acheson
Succeeded by
Sir Edward Leslie, Bt
Hon. Arthur Acheson
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Joseph Birch
Charles Nicholas Pallmer
Member of Parliament for Ludgershall
With: Joseph Birch 1817–1818
Sandford Graham 1818–1821
Succeeded by
Sandford Graham
Earl of Brecknock
Military offices
Preceded by
Sir John Irwin
Colonel of the 6th Regiment of Dragoon Guards
Succeeded by
Robert Taylor
Preceded by
The Lord Rossmore
Commander-in-Chief, Ireland
Succeeded by
Sir Ralph Abercromby
Peerage of Ireland
Preceded by
Simon Luttrell
Earl of Carhampton
Succeeded by
John Luttrell-Olmius
This page was last edited on 6 April 2021, at 09:34
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