Henri De Massue, Marquis De Ruvigny - Encyclopedia

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HENRI DE MASSUE RUVIGNY, MARQUIS DE, afterwards EARL OF GALWAY (1648-1720), was born at Paris on the 9th of April 1648, and was the son of the 1st Marquis de Ruvigny, a distinguished French diplomatist, and a relative of Rachel, the wife of Lord William Russell. He saw service under Turenne, who thought very highly of him. Probably on account of his English connexions he was selected in 1678 by Louis XIV. to carry out the secret negotiations for a compact with Charles II., a difficult mission which he executed with great skill. Succeeding his father as "general of the Huguenots," he refused Louis's offer, at the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, to retain him in that office, and in 1690, having gone into exile with his fellow Huguenots, he entered the service of William III. of England as a major-general, forfeiting thereby his French estates. In July 1691 he distinguished himself at the battle of Aughrim, and in 1692 he was for a time commander-in-chief in Ireland. In November of that year he was created Viscount Galway and Baron Portarlington, and received a large grant of forfeited estates in Ireland. In 1693 he fought at Neerwinden and was wounded, and in 1694, with the rank of lieutenantgeneral, he was sent to command a force in English pay which was to assist the duke of Savoy against the French, and at the same time to relieve the distressed Vaudois. But in 1695 the duke changed sides, the Italian peninsula was neutralized, and Galway's force was withdrawn to the Netherlands. From 1697 to 1701, a critical period of Irish history, the Earl of Galway (he was advanced to that rank in 1697) was practically in control of Irish affairs as lord justice of Ireland. After some years spent in retirement, he was appointed in 1704 to command the allied forces in Portugal, a post which he sustained with honour and success until the battle of Almanza in 1707, in which Galway, in spite of care and skill on his own part, was decisively defeated. But he scraped together a fresh army, and, although infirm, was reappointed to his command by the home government. After taking part in one more campaign, and distinguishing himself by his personal bravery in action, he retired from active life. His last service was rendered in 1715, when he was sent as one of the lords justices to Ireland during the Jacobite insurrection. As most of his property in Ireland had been restored to its former owners, and all his French estates had long before been forfeited, parliament voted him pensions amounting to £150o a year. He died unmarried on the 3rd of September 1720. The English peerage died with him, but not the French marquisate 1

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