The New International Encyclopædia/Ellesmere, Francis Egerton, first Earl of
ELLESMERE, ĕlz'mēr, Francis Egerton, first Earl of (1800-1857). An English politician, the second son of the first Duke of Sutherland. He was born in London; graduated at Christ Church, Oxford, in 1820; entered the House of Commons, and was Chief Secretary for Ireland from 1828 to 1830, when he became Secretary of War. Three years later he assumed the name of Lord Francis Egerton, in lieu of his patronymic, Leveson-Gower, and later was created in turn Viscount Brackley and Earl of Ellesmere. In politics a Liberal Conservative, he spoke in behalf of free trade twenty years before Sir Robert Peel embraced the cause. He achieved considerable distinction as a writer of graceful poems, plays, and translations from the German, and as a munificent patron of the arts. His valuable collection of pictures, which he inherited with the estates of the last Duke of Bridgewater, was placed by him in a gallery open to the public.