George Cowper, 6th Earl Cowper

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The Right Honourable

The Earl Cowper
Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs
In office
13 November 1834 – 17 December 1834
Monarch William IV
Prime Minister the Viscount Melbourne
Preceded by Sir George Shee, Bt
Succeeded by Viscount Mahon
Personal details
Born 26 June 1806
Died 15 April 1856 (1856-04-16) (aged 49)
Nationality British
Political party Whig
Spouse(s) Lady Anne Florence de Grey (d. 1880)

George Augustus Frederick Cowper, 6th Earl Cowper (26 June 1806 – 15 April 1856), styled Viscount Fordwich until 1837, was a British Whig politician. He served briefly as Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs under his uncle Lord Melbourne in 1834.


Cowper was the eldest son of Peter Clavering-Cowper, 5th Earl Cowper, and his wife Emily Lamb, daughter of Peniston Lamb, 1st Viscount Melbourne, sister of Prime Minister William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne, and a leading figure in Regency society. William Cowper-Temple, 1st Baron Mount Temple, was his younger brother. His mother married as her second husband the future Prime Minister Henry Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, in 1839.

He was commissioned a cornet in the Royal Horse Guards on 28 April 1827. On 27 February 1830, he purchased a lieutenancy in the regiment.[1] He retired on the half-pay of the New South Wales Veteran Companies in March 1831,[2] but exchanged into a lieutenancy in the 31st Regiment of Foot on 13 February 1835.[3] He retired from the army on 6 March 1835.[4]

Political career[edit]

Cowper entered the House of Commons for Canterbury in the 1830 general election,[5] and served briefly under his uncle Lord Melbourne as Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs between November and December 1834. He lost his seat in Parliament in the 1835 general election. Two years later he succeeded his father in the earldom. Between 1846 and 1856 he served as Lord-Lieutenant of Kent.[6]


Lord Cowper married Lady Anne Florence de Grey (who after her husband's death succeeded as sixth Baroness Lucas of Crudwell), daughter of Thomas de Grey, 2nd Earl de Grey, in 1833. They had two sons and four daughters. Their second son the Honourable Henry Cowper sat as Member of Parliament for Hertfordshire for many years. Their daughter Lady Florence Amabel married The Hon. Auberon Herbert. Lord Cowper died in April 1856, aged 49, and was succeeded in the earldom by his eldest son Francis. Lady Cowper died in 1880.


External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Stephen Rumbold Lushington
Lord Clifton
Member of Parliament for Canterbury
With: Richard Watson
Succeeded by
Lord Albert Conyngham
Frederick Villiers
Political offices
Preceded by
Sir George Shee, Bt
Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs
November–December 1834
Succeeded by
Viscount Mahon
Honorary titles
Preceded by
The Earl of Thanet
Lord-Lieutenant of Kent
Succeeded by
The Viscount Sydney
Peerage of Great Britain
Preceded by
Peter Clavering-Cowper
Earl Cowper
Succeeded by
Francis Thomas de Grey Cowper