Belfast (Parliament of Ireland constituency)

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Coordinates: 54°35′49″N 5°55′48″W / 54.597°N 5.930°W / 54.597; -5.930

Belfast
Former Borough constituency
for the Irish House of Commons
Former constituency
Created 1613 (1613)
Abolished 1800
Replaced by Belfast

Belfast was a constituency represented in the Irish House of Commons until 1800.

History[edit]

Belfast in County Antrim was enfranchised as a borough constituency in 1613. It continued to be entitled to send two Members of Parliament to the Irish House of Commons until the Parliament of Ireland was merged into the Parliament of the United Kingdom on 1 January 1801.

During the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland Belfast was represented from 1654 in the Westminster Parliament as part of the Carrickfergus and Belfast constituency. Belfast was the place of election in this single-member constituency. See First Protectorate Parliament for further details.

In 1661, following the restoration of the King, the Parliament of Ireland was re-established as it had existed before the Protectorate. In the Patriot Parliament of 1689 summoned by King James II, Belfast was represented with one member.[1]

Under the Act of Union 1800 the Parliament of Ireland was merged with the Parliament of Great Britain to form the Parliament of the United Kingdom. The 300 members of the Irish House of Commons were reduced to 100 Irish members of the United Kingdom House of Commons. As part of that process Belfast lost one of its seats.

Members of Parliament, 1613–1801[edit]

Election First member First party Second member Second party
1613 Sir John Blennerhassett George Trevelyan
1634 Charles Price Thomas Bramston
1634 John Ingersall
1639 Sir William Wrey George Rawdon
1654–1660 Commonwealth - See Carrickfergus and Belfast (constituency)
1660 Sir Jerome Alexander[2]
1661 William Knight Henry Davys[3]
1689 Patriot Parliament Mark Talbot Belfast had only one seat
1692 Sir Richard Levinge[note 1] James Macartney
1692 George Macartney
1695 Charles Chichester
1703 William Crafford William Cairnes
1707 Samuel Ogle
1713 Robert Moore Anthony Atkinson
1715 George Macartney John Ichingham Chichester
1721 George Macartney
1725 John Chichester
1727 David John Barry
1745 John Chichester
1747 William Macartney
1757 Arthur Barry
1761 John Chichester John Ludford
1768 Hon. Henry Skeffington George Hamilton
1776 Barry Yelverton[note 2] Patriot
1777 Alexander Crookshank
1784 Joseph Hewitt
1792 Sir William Godfrey, 1st Bt
1797 Lord Spencer Stanley Chichester George Crookshank
1798 Alexander Hamilton
January 1800 James Edward May
February 1800 John Congreve
1801 Succeeded by the Westminster constituency Belfast

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Also elected for Blessington, for which he chose to sit.
  2. ^ Also elected for Carrickfergus, for which he chose to sit.

References[edit]

  1. ^ O'Hart (2007), p. 504
  2. ^ Clarke, Aidan. Prelude to Restoration in Ireland: The End of the Commonwealth, 1659–1660. 
  3. ^ Return of Members of Parliament (1878) vol. II, p. 605.

Bibliography[edit]

  • O'Hart, John (2007). The Irish and Anglo-Irish Landed Gentry: When Cromwell came to Ireland. vol. II. Heritage Books. ISBN 0-7884-1927-7. 
  • Leigh Rayment's historical List of Members of the Irish House of Commonscites: Johnston-Liik, Edith Mary (2002). The History of the Irish Parliament 1692-1800 (6 volumes). Ulster Historical Foundation.