BELLEW, Richard, 3rd Baron Bellew [I] (d. 1715), of Duleek, co. Louth.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



16 Feb. - 8 May 1712

Family and Education

b. aft. 1664, 2nd s. of John Bellew, 1st Baron Bellew [I], of Duleek, co. Meath and Dundalk by Mary, da. of Walter Bermingham of Dunfert, co. Kildare.  m. July 1695, Lady Frances Livingston, da. of Francis Brudenell, styled Lord Brudenell, wid. of Charles Livingston†, 2nd Earl of Newburgh [S], 1s.  suc. bro. Walter as 3rd Baron Bellew 1694.1

Offices Held

Ensign, Sir Thomas Newcomen’s regt. 1687.2


The Bellews were a Catholic Irish family and in 1690 and 1691 Bellew, his father and brother were all outlawed for fighting for James II and the family estates forfeited. Although entitled to the benefit of the Articles of Limerick, Bellew went abroad to France for health reasons. In 1694 he succeeded to the family title and fortune and spent the next three years struggling to have the outlawry reversed and regain the family estates. He gained powerful supporters, one of whom was his wife’s kinsman, the Duke of Shrewsbury. Lord Wharton (Hon. Thomas*) also interested himself in the case, possibly out of spite against the Earl of Romney (Henry Sidney†) who had been granted the Bellew estates and was reluctant to part with them. William III also proved reluctant to co-operate but eventually Bellew was granted his pardon on 18 Mar. 1697. On 24 June 1698 Bellew was given leave to remain in England, but it took a further year before he regained his estates. The costs of obtaining his own and his father’s pardon, the incumbrances on the estate, and the many claims outstanding against both himself and his father, left him heavily in debt and he spent the next few years fighting various lawsuits and selling parts of the estate to pay his debts.3

In 1705 Bellew became a Protestant and was summoned to the Irish house of lords in 1707. In January 1709 he contested a by-election at Steyning on the interest of his brother-in-law, the 1st Duke of Richmond, probably on account of the parliamentary privileges he would gain if chosen. A double return was made. After a hearing at the bar on 15 Feb. 1709, the House decided in favour of Bellew’s Whig opponent and adjourned further consideration of the election, at which point Bellew withdrew his petition. He successfully contested the borough a second time at a by-election in February 1712, but when the case was heard on petition, extensive bribery was proved against both candidates and the election was declared void. Bellew, then, had little opportunity to reveal any party political inclinations but, although he had campaigned on the interest of the Whiggish Duke of Richmond, he was probably perceived as a High Tory: in 1712 the tellers for Bellew were two October Club members, against two moderate Tories. Giving up Parliament as a means of repairing his fortune, Bellew petitioned for a pension in 1713 and on 13 Oct. was granted £300 p.a. His wife, disappointed at the size of this annuity, began to use her influence to get it increased, seeking assistance from, among others, Henry St. John II*, now Viscount Bolingbroke, who, while promising his own help, advised her to appeal to Shrewsbury. But no increase was forthcoming. After the accession of George I, Bellew’s name appeared on a number of lists of Irish peers as a Whig, who had voted against the Court in the previous Irish parliament, but who would support the government if a new one was to be called. He died on 22 Mar. 1715 and was buried at Duleek.4

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. HMC Buccleuch, ii. 201.
  • 2. CSP Dom. 1686–7, p. 399.
  • 3. CSP Dom. 1691–2, pp. 30, 307; 1694–5, p. 501; 1695, p. 82; 1696, pp. 61, 173, 240, 431, 470; 1697, pp. 64, 243–6, 251; 1698, p. 44; 1699–1700, pp. 86, 132, 173; Cal. Treas. Bks. x. 4, 132; xxii. 440; VernonShrewsbury Letters, i. 66–9, 158, 477; ii. 331, 336–7; Shrewsbury Corresp. 120; J. G. Simms, Williamite Confiscation in Ire. 33, 35, 76, 84; Luttrell, Brief Relation, ii. 266; HMC Buccleuch, ii. 201, 209, 214, 244, 282, 285; Add. 61639, ff. 7–10; 40771, f. 294; HMC Lords, n.s. iv. 29, 32, 44; HMC Ormonde, n.s. viii. 240.
  • 4. Luttrell, v. 621; Cal. Treas. Bks. xxvii. 382; Bolingbroke Corresp. iv. 384; Add. 61640, ff. 28, 30.