Robert Nugent, Earl Nugent - Encyclopedia

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ROBERT NUGENT NUGENT, Earl (1702-1788), Irish politician and poet, son of Michael Nugent, was born at Carlanstown, Co. Westmeath. He was tersely described by Richard Glover as "a jovial and voluptuous Irishman who had left popery for the Protestant religion, money and widows." His change of religion took place at a very early period in life; he married in 1736 Anna (d. 1756), daughter of James Craggs, the secretary of state, a lady who had already been twice given in marriage. His wife's property comprised the borough of St Mawes in Cornwall, and Nugent sat for that constituency from 1741 to 1754, after which date he represented Bristol until 1774, when he returned to St Mawes. He was a lord of the treasury from 1754 to 1759 and president of the board of trade from 1766 to 1768. He married in 1757 Elizabeth, dowager-countess of Berkeley, who brought him a large fortune. His support of the ministry was so useful that he was created in 1767 Viscount Clare, and in 1776 Earl Nugent, both Irish peerages. He died on the 13th of October 1788. Lord Nugent was the author of some poetical productions, several of which are preserved in the second volume of Dodsley's Collections (1748). The earldom descended by special remainder to the earl's son-in-law, George Nugent Temple Grenville, marquess of Buckingham, and so to his successors, the dukes of Buckingham and Chandos.

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