1713-1787; MP, Newtown, 1739; Sec. of Revenue Board, 1742; First Commissioner,
1744-81; Speaker of House of Commons, Dublin, 1756; eminent among undertakers
who engrossed emoluments of the country; influence damaged by appt. of
Marquis of Townsend; dismissed from Revenue Board, 1771; resigned Speakership
at close of session; ceased to be politically active after 1776.
Tom Bartlett, ed. and intro., Macartney in Ireland 1768-72: A Calendar
of the Chief Secretaryship Papers of Sir George Macartney (PRONI [1978),
inc. remarks: John Ponsonby, the leading undertaker, was not only
speaker of the Irish house of Commons but also the first commissioner
of the revenue. By destroying the undertakers power at what he believed
to be its source, Townshend hope to restore to the lord lieutenant
such an influence over the revenue as may enable him ... to put it into
his power to conduct h[is] m[ajaesty]s affairs with safety and success.
(xx). See also Earl Macartney, Rx.