Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 52.djvu/250

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Sidney
Sidney
239

and fidelity to the king, and his greatest misfortunes proceeded from the staggering and irresolution of his nature’ (Clarendon, Rebellion, vi. 387). At last the king, who wished to appoint Ormonde lord-lieutenant in his place, ordered Leicester to resign his office, which was effected on 29 Nov. 1643 (Carte, iii. 49, vi. 104, 113). Leicester begged the queen to intercede, that he might not be disgraced without being told of his fault, and protested his faithfulness to the king, but was given no satisfaction (Collins, ii. 673). The king intended to make him governor to Prince Charles, as some compensation; but, as Leicester refused to sign the letter which the peers at Oxford sent to the Scottish privy council to dissuade them from invading England, he lost all chance of this preferment (Blencowe, p. xxix; Clarendon, vii. 324 n.)

In June 1644 Leicester left the king's quarters and retired to Penshurst; nor did he scruple in the following year to entitle himself to the protection of parliament by taking the negative oath (Old Parliamentary History, xiii. 451). His estate had been temporarily sequestered by the Kentish committee, but the sequestration was not maintained (Collins, i. 130). Feeling that parliament was not well disposed towards him, he made no attempt to take his seat in the House of Lords, although he had done nothing which would have justified his exclusion (Blencowe, p. 7). In May 1649 Northumberland recommended his sister, the Countess of Leicester, to take charge of the Princess Elizabeth and her brother, the Duke of Gloucester, and parliament accepted the suggestion (24 May 1649); the royal children resided at Penshurst from 14 June 1649 till 9 Aug. 1650. The children were then removed to Carisbrook in order to be transported to the continent (Commons' Journals, vi. 216, 446; Blencowe, pp. 75, 103; Cary, Memorials of the Civil War, ii. 138; Green, Lives of the Princesses of England, vi. 374–89). The Princess Elizabeth, who died on 8 Sept. 1650, left the Earl of Leicester certain jewels—viz. a necklace of pearl, to be transmitted to the Duke of Gloucester, and a diamond, to be retained by Leicester and his wife. This legacy involved him in a long suit with the government (Collins, i. 132; Cary, ii. 382; Commons' Journals, vii. 65).

Leicester took the engagement to be faithful to the Commonwealth, because he found his law proceedings required him to do so, but did not in any other way commit himself to support the Commonwealth or Protectorate (Blencowe, p. 100). In April 1660 he took his seat once more in the House of Lords, and concurred in the votes for the Restoration. Charles II made him a privy councillor (31 May 1660), but after the adjournment of the convention (September 1660) he retired once more to Penshurst and took no further part in politics. He died on 2 Nov. 1677 (Collins, i. 136; Blencowe, p. 158). His portrait as a child was painted by Vandyck (see Cat. First Loan Exhib. No. 780). The Countess of Leicester died on 20 Aug. 1659 (ib. p. 271). By her he had six sons, of whom four lived to maturity, and nine daughters: (1) Philip, third earl of Leicester [q. v.] (2) Algernon [q. v.], the republican. (3) Robert, born 1626, a captain (1643), and afterwards colonel, of the English regiment in the Dutch service; Sidney and his regiment, later known as the Buffs, were recalled to England in 1665, and placed upon the English establishment; he died unmarried in August 1668; scandal represented him as the real father of the Duke of Monmouth (Collins, i. 161; Dalton, Army Lists, i. 50; Life of James II, i. 492). (4) Henry, afterwards Earl of Romney [q. v.] Of the daughters, Dorothy, the eldest, who was Waller's Sacharissa, is noticed separately, under her husband's name of Spencer [q. v.]; Lucy, the third, married, in 1647, John Pelham, son of Sir Thomas Pelham, bart., and ancestor of Henry Pelham and Thomas, duke of Newcastle; and Isabella, the seventh, married Philip Smythe, viscount Strangford (Collins, i. 147).

[A long account of Leicester's life, but based exclusively on the papers at Penhurst, is given by Collins in the Memoirs of the Lives and Actions of the Sidneys, prefixed to the Sydney Papers, 2 vols. fol. 1746. Leicester's Journal, extending from 1647 to 1654, was printed by R. W. Blencowe in his Sydney Papers, 1825. Leicester was a voluminous writer, and many extracts from his unpublished manuscripts are printed both by Blencowe and Collins. Clarendon's Rebellion, ed. Macray; Doyle's Official Baronage; other authorities mentioned in the article.]

C. H. F.

SIDNEY, SAMUEL (1813–1883), agricultural writer, was born 6 Feb. 1813 in Paradise Street, Birmingham, where his father, Abraham Solomon, M.D., practised as a physician. He was educated for the law, and acted for a short time (about 1834) as a solicitor in Liverpool. He soon took, however, to journalistic and literary work, using the nom de plume of Sidney, which he afterwards adopted for all purposes. His earlier writings dealt largely with railways and the gauge question, generally from the agricultural point of view. Most of his