Sir Frederick North

Frederick-North
Frederick North

On 13th April 1732, the first Earl of Guilford Francis and his wife Lady Lucy Montagu were blessed with a child, Frederick North. He was the eldest of their six children. North received his English school education at Eton University, after that he was sent to Trinity College Oxford in the year 1748. He also did his Masters in 1750. Sir North travelled extensively in Europe, he also visited Milan, Paris, and Vienna before returning to his homeland England.

Sir Frederick North’s Entry into Parliament

In the year 1754, Sir North entered Parliament for the Borough Family. He made his first ever speech in the legendary House of Commons in the year 1757. Two years later, he got his 1st ministerial position in Newcastle’s Ministry as the Lord of the Treasury. In the year 1764, he resigned from his post and refused to accept the secondary station of Vice Treasurer (Ireland).

He gained many important positions in England as the Chancellor of the Exchequer and even as the Leader of the famed House of Commons. He slowly gained more power and in the year 1768, had the authority to declare an election held in Middlesex as invalid and void.

Sir Frederick North as Prime Minister of England

The year 1770 proved to be an important year for Sir North Frederick as he became the Prime Minister of Great Britain when his cousin Duke of Grafton resigned from the post. He dealt with numerous issues such as the collection of revenue from American colonies, and the introduction of the peppercorn rent tax.

Honours Received by Sir Frederick North

English citizens respected him and he received two great honours, one as the Knight of the Garter and his election as the Chancellor of Oxford University in the year 1772. During the same time, as the PM, Sir North introduced the Royal Marriages Act in the parliament. It was aimed at forbidding marriages of the royal family members without the consent of the Monarch.

Passing of Various Acts & Regulations

  • In 1773, Sir North’s ministry duly passed the Regulating Act (India)

  • In the same year, he passed the Tea Act, which was done to rescue the East India Company from becoming totally bankrupt.

  • He also passed the Quebec Act that ultimately led to the great American War of Independence against the Britishers, the American colonies were thereby lost to them.

Sir North’s Resignation as PM

In the year 1779, Lord North was dealing with Irish trade issues and had to be forced to relax the stringent restrictions. Finally, North was asked to resign from office in the year 1782 by King George III. North Frederick was succeeded as Prime Minister by the 2nd Marquis of Rockingham.

Later, in 1783 Lord North joined forces with James Fox to form a coalition ministry. He served as Home Secretary, but the office was terminated by the King at the end of the year due to the India Bill.

Sir North is believed to be the second Prime Minister of Britain, who was forced out of his office by a vote of no confidence. The first PM had been Sir Robert Walpolein (1742) to meet such a fate. Sir North’s plan to form a conciliation to end the colonies war was out-rightly rejected by the colonies’ heads.

Second Earl of Guilford

In the year 1787, Lord North started losing his eyesight. Still, he succeeded his father and was elected as the second Earl of Guilford and gained a place again in the House of Lords. But failing health finally led to his death on 5th August 1782.

Sir North was buried with all honours at the All Saints Church in Wroxton, nearby his family home. His family property as Wroxton Abbey is now a flourishing school for Americans residing in England.

Famous Quote of Sir Frederick North

His words on becoming blind to his old opponent who had also lost his eyesight were recorded in history as a great quote. The actual words of greeting were as follows: ‘Though you and I have had our quarrels in the past, I wager that there are no two men in England who would be happier to see one another today’.

Family Tree

Lord North wedded Anne Speke, who was the daughter of George Speke (MO of Whitelackington) in the year 1756. He had six children with Anne Speke, namely: George Augustus North, Catherine Ann North, Francis North, Lady Charlotte North, Frederick North, and Lady Anne North. They all gained good positions or were married to dignified personalities in England.

Found info useful?