Ambrose Hardinge Giffard

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Ambrose Hardinge Giffard
4th Chief Justice of Ceylon
In office
8 April 1819 – 2 March 1827
Preceded by Alexander Johnston
Succeeded by Richard Ottley
5th Advocate Fiscal of Ceylon
In office
26 February 1811 – 1821
Preceded by William Coke
Succeeded by Henry Mathews
Personal details
Born 1771
Dublin, Ireland
Died 1827

Sir Ambrose Hardinge Giffard (1771–1827) was chief justice of British Ceylon.


Giffard was born in Dublin in 1771, the eldest son of John Giffard (1745–1819), high sheriff of Dublin in 1794, accountant-general of customs in Dublin, and a prominent loyalist. His mother was Sarah, daughter of William Norton, esq., of Ballynaclash, co. Wexford. Giffard received his Christian names from his relative, Ambrose Hardinge.

After studying for the law he was called to the bar of the Inner Temple, and was appointed chief justice of Ceylon in April 1819. Giffard's health failed, and he was granted leave of absence, but he died on 30 April 1827, while on the homeward voyage, in the "Lady Kennaway", East Indiaman. Before his death a knighthood was conferred upon Giffard, but the title was never gazetted.


Giffard's leisure was devoted to literature, and a selection of poems was published at Ceylon about 1822. Some are reproduced in the Traditions and Recollections of Richard Polwhele.


He married in 1808 Harriet, daughter of Lovell Pennell, esq., of Lyme Regis, and left five sons and five daughters. Admiral Sir George Giffard (1815–1888) was his third son.[1]


  1. ^  "Giffard, Ambrose Hardinge". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Gentleman's Magazine 1827
  • Burke's Peerage, s. v. 'Halsbury.'

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain"Giffard, Ambrose Hardinge". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 

Legal offices
Preceded by
Alexander Johnston
Chief Justice of Ceylon
Succeeded by
Richard Ottley
Preceded by
William Coke
Advocate Fiscal of Ceylon
Succeeded by
Henry Mathews