PERCY, Lord Algernon (1750-1830).
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Family and Education
b. 21 Jan. 1750, 2nd s. of Hugh, 1st Duke of Northumberland, by Lady Elizabeth Seymour, da. and h. of Algernon, 7th Duke of Somerset; bro. of Hugh Percy, Lord Warkworth. educ. Eton 1756-63; Grand Tour 1767. m. 8 June 1775, Isabella Susanna, da. of Peter Burrell, 8s. 3da. suc. fa. by sp. rem. as 2nd Baron Lovaine 6 June 1786; cr. Earl of Beverley 2 Nov. 1790.
In 1773 Percy, ‘being of a delicate and feeble constitution ... by order of his physicians visited the south of France’.1 He was still abroad the following summer when canvassing began for the Northumberland election, and wrote to the freeholders of the county that, detained longer than he intended, he had to offer himself as a candidate by letter. He seems to have been absent throughout the hotly contested election, which was managed by his father, but topped the poll with a considerable majority.
Percy was an Administration supporter; his only recorded votes were with Administration in three divisions on economical reform, February-March 1780, while his only reported speech in the Commons was to present the Northumberland petition, 6 Apr. 1780.2 Re-elected unopposed in 1780, Percy does not appear in any of the extant division lists before the fall of North. His brother, Lord Percy, reported on 20 Mar. 1782 that ‘having been some time in a bad state of health’, Algernon had ‘gone to pass the winter at Nice’.3 The English Chronicle wrote of him in 1781: ‘He is a young man of mild and amiable demeanour, and is neither calculated by endowments, nor disposed by inclination, for taking a material interest in the troublesome bustle of political contention.’ And on 30 July 1783 Horace Walpole mentioned to Mann that Percy went very ‘little into public’. He did not vote on Shelburne’s peace preliminaries, 18 Feb. 1783, or Fox’s East India bill, 27 Nov. 1783; in the lists drawn up early in 1784 he was classed as a supporter of Pitt’s Administration. In January 1784 his father obtained for him a special remainder to the barony of Lovaine, on which his brother, Lord Percy, commented to George Rose: ‘I knew it was what my brother wished very much, though I own I could never think it was any object to him.’4
He died 21 Oct. 1830.