Sir John Parnell

From A Compendium of Irish Biography, 1878

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Parnell, Sir John, Bart., grand-nephew of preceding, was born in Ireland, probably about the middle of the 18th century. He represented the Queen's County in Parliament, and succeeded his father in the baronetcy in 1782. He was appointed a Commissioner of Revenue in 1780, Chancellor of the Exchequer in 1787, and a Lord of the Treasury in 1793. He commanded a regiment of the Volunteers. Barrington says: "Though many years in possession of high office and extensive patronage, he showed a disinterestedness almost unparalleled; and the name of a relative or of a dependant of his own scarcely in a single instance increased the place or the pension lists of Ireland."

He is referred to in Grattan's Life as "an honest, straightforward, independent man, possessed of considerable ability and much public spirit; as Chancellor of the Exchequer he was not deficient, and he served his country by his plan to reduce the interest of money. He was amiable in private, mild in disposition, but firm in mind and purpose. His conduct at the Union did him honour, and proved how warmly he was attached to the interests of his country, and on this account he was dismissed" from his offices. His determined opposition to the Union gave Lord Castlereagh and its promoters much concern. Both he and his son Henry voted against it. He was elected to represent the Queen's County in the Imperial Parliament, and died, somewhat suddenly, in London, 5th December 1801. Mr. Addington paid a warm tribute to his memory in the House of Commons. Some lines on his death will be found in the Gentleman's Magazine for December 1801.

Sources

54. Burke, Sir Bernard: Peerage and Baronetage.

146. Gentleman's Magazine. London, 1731-1868.
Gilbert, John T., see Nos. 110, 335.

154. Grattan Henry, his Life and Times: Henry Grattan. 5 vols. London, 1839-'46.

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