George Rose - Encyclopedia

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GEORGE ROSE (1744-1), British politician, was born on. the 17th of June 1744, and was educated at Westminster school, afterwards entering the navy, a service which he left in 1762 after he had taken part in some fighting in the West Indies. He then obtained a position in the Civil Service, becoming joint keeper of the records in 1772 and secretary to the board of taxes in 1777. In 1782 he gave up the latter appointment to become one of the secretaries to the treasury under Lord Shelburne, though he did not enter parliament. He left office with his colleagues in April 1783, but in the following December he returned to his former position at the treasury in Pitt's ministry, being henceforward one of this minister's most steadfast supporters. He entered parliament as member for Launceston early in 1784, and his fidelity and friendship were rewarded by Pitt, who gave him a lucrative post in the court of exchequer; in 1788 he became clerk of the parliaments. In 1801 Rose left office with Pitt, but returned with him to power in 180 4, when he was made vice-president of the committee on trade and joint paymaster-general. He resigned these offices a few days after Pitt's death in 1806, but he served as vice-president of the committee on trade and treasurer of the navy under the duke of Portland and Spencer Perceval from 1807 to 1812. He was again treasurer of the navy under Lord Liverpool, and he was still member of parliament for Christchurch; a seat which he had held since 1790, when he died at Cuffnells, in Hampshire, on the 13th of January 1818. Rose was an able and conscientious public servant, although he and his two sons drew a large amount of money from sinecures, a fact referred to by William Cobbett in his "A New Year's Gift to old George Rose." He wrote several books on economic subjects, and his Diaries and Correspondence, edited by the Rev. L. V. Harcourt, was published in 1860.

His elder son, Sir George Henry Rose (1771-1855), was in parliament from 1794 to 1813, and again from 1818 to 1844, and in the meantime he was British minister at Munich and at Berlin; in 1818 he succeeded his father as clerk of the parliaments. He was the father of Baron Strathnairn (q.v.). The second son was the poet William Stewart Rose.

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