NORTH, Frederick, Lord North (1732-92), of Bushey Park, Mdx. and Wroxton Abbey, nr. Banbury, Oxon.
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Family and Education
b. 13 Apr. 1732, 1st s. of Francis North†, 1st Earl of Guildford, by 1st w. Lady Lucy Montague, da. of George Montague†, 1st Earl of Halifax. educ. Eton 1742-8; Trinity, Oxf. 1749; Grand Tour. m. 20 May 1756, Anne, da. and h. of George Speke† of White Lackington, Som., 4s. 3da. KG 18 June 1772; suc. fa. as 2nd Earl of Guilford 4 Aug. 1790.
Ld. of Treasury June 1759-July 1765; jt. paymaster-gen. Aug. 1766-Oct. 1767; PC 10 Dec. 1766; chancellor of Exchequer Oct. 1767-Mar. 1782; first ld. of Treasury Feb. 1770-Apr. 1782; sec. of state for Home affairs April-December 1783.
Chancellor, Oxford Univ. 1773-d.; ld. lt. Som. 1774-d.; ld. warden of Cinque Ports 1778-d.
By 1790, when he was returned as always for the family borough of Banbury, Lord North was a spent force politically, with a mere handful of personal followers. He was nearly blind, though according to Horace Walpole and Wraxall, his spirits and intellectual capacity were as lively as ever and Walpole remarked, ‘if ever loss of sight could be compensated, it is by so affectionate a family’.1 Shortly after his return, North succeeded his aged father to the title. In the Lords he spoke a few times, still in opposition, though he professed himself willing to support government in ‘repressing any attempt to disturb the public tranquillity’.2 He died 5 Aug. 1792. On his deathbed, he informed his family
that with regard to his political life, though he could not have the presumption to suppose but what there had been much of error in many things he had done, yet it was a satisfaction which none but himself could in that hour conceive, that on no one act of it could he look back with regret.3