Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Vivian, Hussey Crespigny

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VIVIAN, Sir HUSSEY CRESPIGNY, third Baron Vivian (1834–1893), diplomatist, born on 19 June 1834, was eldest son of Sir Charles Crespigny Vivian, second baron Vivian, by his first wife, Arabella (d. 1837), daughter of John Middleton Scott of Ballygannon, co. Wicklow.

The father, Sir Charles Crespigny Vivian, second Baron (1808–1886), son of Sir Richard Hussey Vivian, first baron Vivian [q. v.], was born at Truro on 24 Dec. 1808, and educated at Eton. He became cornet in the 7th light dragoons 1825, lieutenant 1826, captain 1829, major in the army 12 Aug. 1834, when he retired. He represented Bodmin from 1835 to 1842, when he succeeded to the title. He was appointed special deputy-warden of the Stannaries in 1852 and lord-lieutenant of Cornwall in 1856, resigning the latter office in 1877. He died at Ventnor on 24 April 1886, leaving six sons and three daughters by his two wives. A portrait of Lord Vivian, by ‘Spy,’ with a kindly notice, appeared in ‘Vanity Fair,’ 19 Aug. 1876 (cf. Spectator, 26 April 1879).

Educated at Eton, the eldest son was appointed a clerk in the foreign office on 18 Nov. 1851. He was attached to several important special missions, accompanying the Earl of Clarendon to Paris in 1856, and the Earl of Breadalbane to Berlin in 1861. In 1864 he was sent to Athens with the draft treaty for the annexation of the Ionian Islands to Greece. He became senior clerk in the foreign office on 3 July 1869. In 1873 he was appointed acting agent and consul-general at Alexandria, and was transferred to Bucharest the following year. He was again appointed to Egypt in 1876; while there he was made C.B.

He was appointed resident minister to the Swiss confederation in 1879, and two years afterwards was raised to the rank of envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Denmark. He was sent to Brussels with the same rank in 1884; while there he was made K.C.M.G. He succeeded to his father's title on 24 April 1886. He was appointed British plenipotentiary to the slave-trade conference held at Brussels in 1889, and for his services was made G.C.M.G. He was appointed ambassador in Rome on 1 Jan. 1892, where he remained until his death on 21 Oct. 1893. At his funeral on the 25th the Prince of Naples followed on foot with Lord Vivian's son.

Vivian, who was a conscientious but not a brilliant diplomatist, was elected a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in 1872. He married, on 8 June 1876, Louisa Alice, daughter of Robert Gordon Duff of Ryde, and had issue Sir George Crespigny Brabazon Vivian, the present baron, and three daughters.

[Hertslet's Foreign Office List; Baily's Magazine; Times; Daily Telegraph; J. L. Vivian's Pedigree of the Family of Vivian of Cornwall, p. 13; Boase and Courtney's Bibl. Cornub.]

E. L. R.