William Henry Gregory [Sir] (1817-92)

References

Life
[William Henry Gregory;] grandson of William Gregory (1766-1840; PC KCMG); ed. Harrow, and Christ Church, Oxford, which he left without graduating; inherited Coole Park, S. Co. Galway; elected Conservative MP for Dublin, 1842-47; supported Poor Relief Act, 1847, entailing the Gregory Clause [properly the Quarter Acre clause] - called ‘Gregoryism’ in the Irish Felon - which refused relief to any holding quarter acre or more, but took pride in having evicted no tenant himself in the Famine; appt. High Sherriff of Galway, 1849;
 
addicted to ‘the turf’ and forced to sell much of his 8,000 acre estate at Kilternan, S. Co. Galway, to pay for gambling debts, 1855; liberal-conservative MP for Galway, 1857-71; joined Liberals on death of Palmerston, 1865; chairman of House of Commons Inquiry into accommodation at British Museum, 1860; appt. trustee of National Gallery, 1867-92; Irish privy councillor, 1871; governor of Ceylon, 1871-77; KCMG, 1876;
 
m. Augusta Persse (Lady Gregory), 1880, with whom a son Robert (b.1881); d. 4 March 1892; a posthumous autobiography based on his papers was issued by Lady Gregory, 1894; his estate, library, and gallery figure in the poetry of W. B. Yeats, who spent much time at Coole Park; Trollope - who was at school with him - partly based Phineas Finn on Gregory.

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John Mitchel describes the Poor Relief Act and its “Gregory Clause” ...
‘In 1846 came the Famine, and the “Relief Acts” advancing money from the Treasury, to be repaid by local assessment; and of course there was an aggravated and intolerable Poor-rate to meet thiss claim. Of which Relief Acts, only one fact needs to be recorded here - that the Public Works done under them were strictly ordered to be of an unproductive sort - that is, such as would create no fund to repay their own expenses. Accordingly, many hundreds of thousands of feeble and starving men were kept digging holes, and breaking up roads - doing not only no service, but much harm. Well, then, to meet these Parliamentary advances there was nothing but rates: and, therefore, there was the higher premium to landlords on the extermination, that is the slaughter, of their tenantry. If the clearing business had been active before, now there was a rage and passion for it; and as if the Cheap Ejectment Acts were not a speedy enough machinery, there was a new Poor-law enacted, containing amongst other clauses, the “Quarter Acre clause,” which provided that if a farmer, having sold all his produce to pay the rent duties, rates and taxes, should be reduced, as {xxxviii} many thousands of them were, to apply for public out-door relief, he should not get it until he had first delivered up all his land to the landlord. Under that law it is the able-bodied idler only who is to be fed - if he attempt to till but one rood of ground, he dies. This simple method of ejectment was called “passing paupers through the workhouse” - a man went in, a pauper came out.’
 

Jail Journal [1854] (Dublin 1913), “Introductory”, p.xxxix - see full text under Mitchel, infra. [Note that Mitchel does not name Gregory as the author of the clause.]

 

Commentary
Cáthal Portéir, ed., The Great Irish Famine [Thomas Davis Lectures Series], RTÉ/Mercier, 1995, pp.86-103: Gregory’s infamous quarter-acre clause … turned the act into a charter for land clearance and consolidation. A cabinet majority of moderates and moralists supported the Gregory clause as a weeapon necessary for forcing the pace of transition to an Anglicised social and economic structure, and Russell was persuaded to accept it as a spur to greater cultivation.’ (See discussion of the 1847 Poor Law, in Peter Gray, ‘Ideology and the Famine’, in p.93. Note that Gregory is also mentioned in James S. Donnelly’s essay in the same collection: ‘Nothing facilitated clearances more than the quarter-acre or Gregory clause, named for William H. Gregory, MP for Dublin city, 1842-47, in the Conservative interest, future husband of Land Gregory, and heir to a substantial Galway estate (he succeeded to it in 11847), which he largely dissipated by gambling debts on the turf in the late 1840s and 1850s.’ (James S. Donnelly, ‘Mass Eviction and the Great Famine’, in Portéir, op. cit., p.159.); quotes Canon John O’Rourke on the effect of the clause: ‘A more complete engine for the slaughter and expatriation of a people was never designed’; ‘Mr Gregory’s words - the words of … a pretended friend of the people - and Mr Gregory;s clause are things that should be forever rememebred by the descendants of the slaughtered and expatriated small farmers of Ireland.’ (O’Rourke, The Great Famine, Veritas, 1989, p.171; Donnelly, ibid., p.160.)

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Brian Walker, “An Irishman's Diary” [guest contrib.], writes of ‘the serious failure among Irish politicians and electors to respond to their situation in a meaningful way’ in the General Election of 1847, proceeding with party issues as usual. He continues: ‘[A]nother failure to deal effectively with the crisis concerned the so-called Gregory Clause which had been introduced into new relief measures earlier in the summer by William Gregory, a Co Galway landowner and Dublin City Conservative MP. To prevent better-off farmers abusing the relief system, he brought in a quarter-acre qualification. This later had very damaging consequences, by leading many people with holdings above a quarter-acre to give up their homes to obtain assistance. Subsequently, Gregory was the object of much opprobrium over this clause and its unintended outcome. / During the general election, however, there was virtually no protest over the Gregory Clause. In Dublin, Gregory was challenged briefly by a Repeal candidate, John Reynolds, primarily on the grounds that it “must have the effect of swamping Dublin and the other large towns in Ireland by the paupers from their rural district” and create extra expense for ratepayers, rather than from any concern about its effects on smallholders. Gregory lost his seat, not thanks to this measure, but because of Orange opposition to him and because he had backed corn law repeal.’ He goes on to cite the case of Charles O'Connell, an independent (a ‘ ‘maverick’) who warned that the Gregory clause would ‘drive our poor unprotected fellow creatures to despair’ but later withdrew from the contest and supported the successful Conservative landlord candidate, resulting in the demolition of his house at Liscannor, as reported in the Limerick Chronicle (18 Aug. 1847). Walker writes: ‘Gregory failed to appreciate the damage his clause would create or to understand the full reality of the grave difficulties which confronted Ireland. At the same time, it seems fair to say that this failure was not his alone, but one that was shared by many of his contemporaries. In the summer of 1847, after a brief respite, Ireland sleepwalked into the famine abyss, again.’

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Terry Eagleton, Heathcliff and The Great Hunger (London: Verso 1995): ‘[... I]t could not pass entirely unnoticed that if the forefathers of the colonial class in Ireland had been a little less intent on undermining the native culture, their emancipated sons and daughters would have needed to busy themselves rather less with restoring it. Before Lady Gregory came to collect Gaelic folk tales, her future husband William had framed the infamous Gregory clause in the depths of famine.’ (q.p.; quoted in Colm Tóibín, “Let us lay these ghosts to rest”, in The Guardian, 10 July 1999 - remarking prefatorily: ‘Terry Eagleton has wry words to say about the relationship between Anglo-Irish landlords and Anglo-Irish writers.’)

Note: Tóibín goes on to quote Canon O’Rourke’s remark in his History of The Great Famine of 1847 that “A more complete engine for the slaughter and expatriation of a people was never designed” than the Gregory clause. Cf. Edmund Burke’s remarks on the Penal Laws, supra.

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References
Sotheby Sale [Catalogue]: Printed Books formerly in the Library at Coole, The Property of Lady Gregory (London: Sotheby & Co.), Auction Catalogue, 20-21 March 1972. [For introduction, see under Lady Gregory, References, infra.] 510 lots; lists [inter alia] works of Ackermann [Lot 1], Addison, Aeschylus, Ainsworth, Akber [Persian Emp.], Arabian Nights trans. Burton, Aristophanes, Army Lists, Auber (Rise & Progress of British Power in India, 2v. 1837) [Lot 20], Jane Austen, Badeslade (Chor. Brit.), Barrow, Life of George Anson (1839), Cicero, Catullus, Beardsley; John Beaumont, An historical ... treatise of spirits, apparitions, witchcrafts, and other magical practices (1705) {Lot 36]; Geneva Bible (Chris. Barker 1576) [Lot 45]; Biographia Britannica, or the lives of the most eminent persons who have flourished in Great Britain and Ireland, 6 vols. (1747-66); Valentine Blacker, Memoir of the operations of the British Army in India during the Mahratta War, 2 vols., incl. vol. of maps & plans, diced calf gilt, joints of upper covers broken (1821) [Lot 51]; W. S. Blunt, A New Pilgrimage (1889), presentation copy; do., Esther (1892); do., Griselda (1893); do., My Diaries, 2 vols., foreword by Lady Gregory [1921]; Oliver St. John Gogarty, An Offering of Swans, pref. W. B. Yeats (Eyre & Spottiswoode [1923]?; no copy in BM]; George Borrow, The Bible in Spain (1843); Boswell, Life of Johnson; do., An Account of Corsica; Lessing, Sel. Works; Bourke, The History of White’s (1892; ltd. edn. 500); J. N. Brewer, The Beauties of Ireland, 2 vols., 1825; Michael Bryan, A New System, or An Analysis of Ancient Mythology, 2 vols., with a 13-line autograph note by W. B. Yeats [see under Yeats, Notes]; Burke, Works, 9 vols. 1871-72 [Lot. 78]; Bishop Burnet, History of his own Time, 2 vols. (Dublin 1724-34); Richard Francis Burton, The lake regions of Central Africa, 2 vols. [1st edn.] (1860), tinted pls., folding map; Cabinet des pierres antique gravées ..., 2 vols. (Paris 1778); Camden, Britannia, trans. & ed. Edmund Gibson [1695], fol., port. pls., 50 db.-pp. [of] folding maps, and Do., fol. [1722]; and Do., enl., by Richard Gough, 4 vols., 2nd edn. [1806], fol., port. pls., 57 maps; John Cary, New map of England and Wales, with part of Scotland (1794); Cervantes, Don Quixote, trans. Charles Jarvis (1756); Chatterton, Works (1803); Clarendon, Edward Hyde, The History of the Rebellion and Civil War, 3 vols., 1st edn., port. in each (Oxford 1702-04); Do., 7 vols. (1849) [Lot 95]; Connolly, Arthur, Journey to the North of India overland from England, 2 vol. [1st edn.] (1834); Erasmus Darwin, Phytologia ... philosophy of agriculture or gardening (1800); Thomas Frognell Dibden, Bibliomania, or book madness (1811), do., The Bibliographical Decameron (1817), do., The Library companion (1824), and do., Reminiscences of a literary life (1836); Dickens, Pickwick Papers, Nicholas Nickleby, Martin Chuzzlewit, Dombey and Sons, David Copperfield, Bleak House, Little Dorrit, Tale of two cities, Edwin Drood [as 1st edns. in book form, with two others; £140 the lot]; John Donne, Works, ed. Henry Alford, 6 vols. (1897-1900) [Lot 124]; John Dryden, Critical and Misc. Prose, ed. Edmond Malone, 4 vols., contemp. half-Russian, uncut (1800); de Tocqueville, The Republic of the United States of America, trans. Henry Reeves (NY 1858); H. Dutton, Stat. Survey of the County of Clare (Dublin 1808); Henry O'Brien [given as ed.], Phoenician Ireland (1833), map. calf, gift; G. N. Wright, Scenes in Ireland (1834) [three foregoing Lot 132]; Euripides, Works [Latin & Greek] (1821); Irish Farmers Journal and Weekly INtelligencer (Dublin 1815-18); John Evelyn, discourse of forest trees, with notes by A. Hunter (York 1786), 42 pls.; J Fahey, The History and Antiquities of the Diocese of Milmacduagh (Dublin 1893); E. A. Martel, Irelande et Cavernes anglaises (Paris 1897), with LG’s bookplate; J. P. Ferrier, History of the Afghans (1858); Henry Fielding, Works, ed. Arthur Murphy, 10 vols. (1821); Edward Fitzgerald, Rubaiyat [1879]; Flaubert, Madame Bovary (Paris 1858); A. de Lamartine, Premieres Meditations (Brussels 1834); Jean Froissart, Chronicle of England (W. Myddylton [1545] & R. Pynson 1525), fol. [£70]; Georgian Society, records of eighteenth-century domestic arch. & decoration in Dublin, 5 vols. (1909-13); Alexander Gilchrist, Life of Wm Blake, 2 vol. [2nd edn] (1880); Gough, Richard, Anecdotes of British Topography (1768); Goya, 80 pls. in Harris’s 5th edn. (1881-86); John Gould, Birds of Great Britain, 5 vols., 367 hand-col. liths., fol. (1862-73) [Nissen 372; £3200]; G. Graves, The Naturalist’s Pocket-book, 8 pls. [1818]; Thomas Gray, Poems & Letters (1863; 1902) [Lot 171]; G. Gregory, A new and Complete Dictionary of Arts & Sciences, 2 vols (1815), engr. pls., diced calf [Lot 173]; Ovid, Metamorphosis (Augsberg, 1681); H. M. G. Grellmann, A Dissertation on the Gipseys [sic], trans. Matthew Riper (1787); C. S. Hardinge, Recollections of India, 2 vols. (1847); Harleian Miscellany, 8 vols. [1st edn.] (1744-46), pref. by Dr. Johnson; J. Harrington, Oceana and Other Works, large paper, front., 3rd edn. (1747), fol., contemp. calf, gilt spine {Lot 187; £12, P. J. Harrington]; Homer, Opera ([Geneva] 1609); Ovid, Opera, 2 vols. (Leiden 1929) [both presented to Wm. Gregory by Wellesley then Lord Lieut. of Ireland]; Homer, Odyssey, ed. Henry Hayman 3 vols. (1866); Virgil ed. John Conington; W. Hooker, Pomona Londinensis (1818); A. Hope, The Dolly Dialogues (1894); Horace (Milan 1512), and do. Emily Lawless, The Story of an Island (1892); letters of Robt. Browning and Eliz. Barreett (1899), bookplate of LG; Horace (Milan 1512); do., Pine’s edn. (1733-37); do., Works, trans. C. Smart (1774); R. H. Horne, The History of Napoleon, 2 vols. (1841); also several memoirs of NB, incl. Robert Southey, History of the Peninsula War, 2 vols. (1823-32); Irish Atlas, new and correct (Dublin: G. & J. Grierson and M. Keene c.1780], oblong 4to.; Irish Bogs, [4th] Report from the Committee Respecting the Draining of Bogs in Ireland (Dublin 1810-14), half-russia [Lot 220]; Hobbes’s Leviathan (1651) [Lot 196 £260]; Wm. Hogarth, Works [c.1745-65], 81 pls.; do., Hogarth moralized [1768]; Washington Irving, History of life and voyages of Chris. Columbus, 4 vols. [1st Eng. edn.] (1826); J. H. Jesse, Memoirs of the Pretenders and their adherents, 2 vols. (1839); Samuel Johnson, A Dictionary fo the English Language (Cambridge 1800); John Johnstone, An account of the mode of draining land, acc. to the system practised by Mr Joseph Elkington [2nd edn.] (1801) [2 copies]; William Smith, Observations on .. water meadows and the draining and irrigating of peat boys (Norwich 1806), 2 fold. pls., marginalia [2 vols. bound with copy of above as 1 vol.]; Josephus, Works, trans. J. Court (1733); F. Junius, Etymolgicum Anlicanum (Oxford 1747) [Lot 231]; John Lawrence, The Modern land-steward (1801); Richard Lawrence, Elgin Marbles from the Psrthenon ... fifty pls. [etchings] (1818); S. Lewis, A topographical dictionary of England, 5 vols. (1831), do., ... Wales, 2 vols. (1833); David Livingstone, Missionary Travels and researches in South Africa [1st edn.] (1857); G. C. Loening, Military Aeroplanes, 2nd end. (Boston 1916); C. W. Vane, Marquis of Londonderry. Recollections oof a tour in the north of Ejurope (1838), 2 vols, 5 ports., 2 fold. plans, 8vo. [2 copies]; Longfellow, Poetical Works (1871); Tennyson, Poems (Bickers, n.d.); Matthew Arnold, Poems, 2 vols. (1877); Swinbunre, Poems (1868); J. C. Loudon, An encyclopaedia of gardening [n.d.]; do., An encyclopaedia of plants (1836); L. Ludivici, Lapidariaum Zeylanicam ... Ornamental Inscriptions of the Dutch Churches and Chrucyards of Ceylon (1877) [Lot 267]; Thomas MacDonagh, Literature in Ireland (1916) [same lot with others incl.]; P. Nolan, The Irish Dames of Ypres, being a History of the Royal Irish Abbey (1908); James Macpherson, The Poems of Ossian in the original Gaelic with literal trans. into English ... by the Rev. Archibald Clerk, 2 vols. (1870); Ovid, Opera (Oxfrord 1825); Pindar, Odes (1765); Thomas Mallory, Morte Darthur, ill. Beardsley (1893); Adventures of Gil Blas of Santillana, 3 vols. (Edin. 1886), ltd. edn. 75]; William Marshall, On the landed property of England: an elementary and practical threatise; containing the purchase and improvnt. and the management of landed estates (1804); R. Mongomery Marshall, History ogf the British Colonies, 5 vols. (1835) [Sabin 44910]; T. Martyn, The Language of Botany (1793); J. White, An Esay on Indigenous Grasses of Ireland (Dublin 1808), pls.; R. Hooper, Observations on the Structure and Economy of Plants, 3 vols. in 1 (Oxford 1797); W. H. Maxwell, History of the Irish Rebellion in 1798 (1845), pls.; The Constitution of Freemasonry (Dublin 1804), with imprimatur; John Miller, An illustration of the sexual system [termini botanici] of Linnaeus, 2 vols. (1794-89), engr. titles, 190 [...]; John Milton [Greek pamph., 3rd edn (Amsterdam 1690) [Wing M2115]; F. Moore, The Lepidoptera of Ceylon, 3 vols. (1880-87), with 299 shts. of watercolour drawings [Lot 307 £480]; E. Moor [sic], A narrative of the ops. of Capt. Little’s detachmt and of the Mahratta Army [... &c.] (1784); James Moore, A Narrative of the campaign of the British army in Spain [3rd edn.] (18090 [with sev. other works on that conflict]; George Moore, The Bending of the Bough [1st End.], LG’s copy, signed, and with a revised text, slightly over 2pp., in Moore’s hand (1900) [Lot 380 J. E. Reade £42]; F. O. Morris, A History of British Birds, 6 vol. (163-64); J[ohn] O’Donovan, The O’Conors of Connaught (Dublin 1891), pls.; C. F. Blake-Forster, The Irish Chieftains (1872); J. F. Maguire, The Irish in America (1868); Sir Jonah Barrington, Rise and Fall of the Irish Nation (Paris 1833) [last three one lot]; G. R. Gleig, Memoirs of the life of Waren Hastings, 3 vols. (1841); Ordnance Survey ... Galway, shts. 81, 102, 103, 112-14, 128-130 (Dublin c.1840), 14 hand-col. engr. maps, with index., folded, in contemp. russsia case, 4to. [Lot 330]; Thomas Osborne, A collecton of voyages and travels, 2 bvols. (1745). fol., 15 pls., 37 maps; W. A. Osbaldiston, The Universal sportsman, or Nobleman, gentleman and Farmer's Dictionary of Recreation and Amusement (Dublin c.1780), pls., R. S. Surtees, Handley Cross (1854), col. pls. by Leech [2 copies]; William Paley, The Principles of moral and political philosophy [1st Edn.] (1785); F. T. Palgrave, The Golden Treasury (?1865); Charles Lever, Charles O'Malley (Chapman & Hall n.d.); Sir Ralph Payne-Galloway, Letters to young shooters, 3 vols (1896-1902), pls.; J. Paxton, The Magazine of Botany, Vol.1-2 [only] (1834-35), The Gardener’s Gazette, 2 vols. (1837-38); Samuel Pepys, Memoirs, ed. Lord Braybrooke, 5 vols. (1828); G[eorge] Petrie, The ecclesiastical Architecture of Ireland (Dublin 1845); Thomas Moore, Irish Melodies (1856), pls., green morocco, gilt; The Spirit of the Nation: Ballads and Songs (Dublin 1846), morocco, gilt, rubbed [the foregoing three with two others as lot 353]; M. Pilkington, the Gentleman’s and Connoisseur’s Dictionary of Painters, 2 vol. in 1 (Leiden 1798-1805); C. R. S. Ptiman, A Game Warden among his Charges (1931); Plotinus: Treatises of the first [-sicth] Enneads, trans. form Greek by Stephen McKenna and B. S. Page, 5 vols. (Medici Society 1921-30), orig. holland-backed boards, uncut; Richard Pococke, A Description of the East and some other countries, 3 vols. in 1 [1st Edn.] (1743-45); Alexander Pope, Works, 9 vols. (1725); Horace Walpole, The Castle of Otranto (1797); Potatoes: report of the committee of the Board of Agriculture, appointed to extract information from the county reports, and other agricultural authorities, concerning the use of potatoes (1795), pls., contemp. calf gilt, 4to.; Princess of Wales: The Genuine Book - An Enquiry [...] into the conduct of (1813); George the Third, His Court and Family (1820); Ptolemy, Geografia, 2 pts. in 1 vol, ed Leonardo Cernoti (Venive 1598-97), world map; engr. maps; Richard Pulteney, A general view of the writings of Linnaeus [1st edn.] (1781); Rabelais, Oeuvres, 7 vols. (1836); Plato, Opera, 8 vols. (Leipiz 1829); Old Harr (1898), inscr. ‘W. R. Gregory to his Mother Xmas 1897’; Charles Lamb, Essays of Elia (1871); Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson [c.1860]; Rabelais [7 vols.], Plato [8 vols.], and Demosthenes, 5 vols. ([all] Leipzig 1829); Racing Calendar [var. vols. 1806-55]; Ramayuna of Valmeeeki, in the orig. Sungskrit [sic] ... trans. William Carey and Joshua Marshman, 3 vols. (Serampore 1806-08); Marquis of Clanricarde [Ulick Bourke], Memoirs (Dublin 1744); Rochester [Wilmot], Poems (1710); Lord Rosebery, Napoleon: the Lst Phase (1890); S. Gwynn, The Fair Hills of Ireland (1906) & The Famous Cities of Ireland (1915), Sir William Orpen, Stories of Old Ireland and Myself (1924), all with Lady Gregory's bookplate; John Ruskin, Examples of Architecture in Venice (1887); Aylett Sammes, Britannia antiqua illustrata (1676) [Wing S535]; G. V. Sampson, A Memoir, explanatory of the chart and survey of the county of London-derry (1814); George Sandys, Sandys Travells, containing an history of the original and present state of the Turkish empire (1673); Savoy, ed. Arthur Symons, ill. Beardsley (1896); Simeon Shaw, Nature displayed, 6 vols. (1823); P. B. sheley, The Sensitive Plant, ill. E[lizabeth] T[empre] B[owden], MS, 23 leaves (1858); William Smith, A Delineation of the Strata of England and Wales (1815 [1817]); Tobias Smollett, Works, 6 vols. (Edinburgh 1820); William Speechley, A treatise on the culture of the vine (1790) [to which Robert Gregory of Coole subscribed]; Henry Morton Stanley, How I Found Livingstone (1872); Sterne, A Sentimental Journey Through France and Itlay, 2 vols. [1st edn.] (1768); G. Stubbs, the Anatomy of the Horse (1938), fol.; Jonathan Swift, Works, ed. John Nichols, 19 vols. (1808); James Thompson, The Seasons (1793); Anthony Trollope, Australia and New Zealand, 2 vols. [1st end.] (1873); Trollope, Hunting Sketches (1865); richard Twiss, Travels through Portugal and Spain in 1772 & 1773 (1775); Charles Vallancey, Prospectus of a Dictionary of the Language of the Aire Coti, or ancient Irish, compared with the language of the Cuti, or ancient Persians (Dublin 1802); van gogh, the Letters of a Post-Impressionist (Boston 1913) [book plates of John Quinn & Lady Gregory,with his inscription, ‘these are the best letters of an artist I ever read’]; Virgil ... trans. Dryden (Tonson 1697); Walpole, Works, 5 vols. (1798-1819); Isaac Walton, The Complete Angler, ed. by Hawkins (1775); Sir James Ware, De Hibernian & antiquitatibus eisu, disquisitiones [1st Edn.] (1654) [Wing W843]; George Washington, Epistls domestic, confidential and official (1796); Gilbert White, The Natural History of Selborne (1813); Thomas Gray, Poems and Leters (1867); Lady Wilde, Poems of Speranza, ded. ‘My Sons, Willie and Oscar Wilde’ (Dublin 1864), 4o.; t. Wright, Louthiana: or, an Introduction to the Antiquities of Ireland (1748), 66 pls.; jack B. Yeats, Life in the West of Ireland (1912) [inscribed presentation copy containing autograph letter wishing her a ‘fair voyage and pleasant time in America’.]

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Notes
The Poor Law Amendment (1847) contained a so-called “Gregory” clause which stipulated that those holding more than a quarter of an acre should be excluded from benefit, so that a tenant farmer in need of relief would have to surrender his holding before becoming ‘a burden on the rates’.

W. B. Yeats (Autobiographies, Macmillan, 1955) cites mezzotints of Pitt, Fox, Lord Wellesley, Palmerston, Gladstone among possessions at Coole, together with a ‘letter from Burke to the Gregory that was chairman of the East India Company saying that he committed to his care, now that he himself had grown old, the people [390] of India’; also signed photographs of Mark Twain, Browning, Thackeray, and at a later date fine portraits and etchings by Augustus John and Charles Shannon as well as paintings of Galways scenery by Sir Richard Burton, bequeathed at his death: ‘I can remember somebody saying, “Balzac would have given twenty pages to the stairs”.’ (pp.380-91.) See also note on Coole Park under Lady Gregory [supra].

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Colm Tóibín, Lady Gregory’s Toothbrush (Dublin: Lilliput Press 2002), writes of the Gregory Clause and demonstrates from Hansard parliamentary records that Gregory was alerted by responses to his speech of the ruinous consequences of the stipulation [see under Lady Gregory].

Kith & Kin: 1766-1840; ed. Harrow and Trinity College, Cambridge; MA, 1787; Inner Temple; MP Portarlington, 1798-1800; under-secretary for Ireland, 1812-31; adviser to viceroys and chief secretaries; retired, 1831; ranger of Phoenix Park, 1812.

Best friend: Sir William Gregory's closest friend was the antiquarian and classicist Sir Henry Lanyard (see Rober Greacen, review of Judith Hill, Lady Gregory, in Books Ireland, Dec. 2005, p.289.)

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