Richard Lovell Edgeworth
|Born||31 May 1744|
|Died||13 June 1817 (aged 73)|
|Alma mater||Corpus Christi College, Oxford; Trinity College, Dublin|
Edgeworth was born in Pierrepont Street, Bath, England, son of Richard Edgeworth senior, and great-grandson of Sir Salathiel Lovell through his mother, Jane Lovell, granddaughter of Sir Salathiel. The Edgeworth family came to Ireland in the 1580s. Richard was descended from Francis Edgeworth, appointed joint Clerk of the Crown and Hanaper in 1606, who inherited a fortune from his brother Edward Edgeworth, Bishop of Down and Connor.
A Trinity College, Dublin and Corpus Christi College, Oxford alumnus, he is credited for creating, among other inventions, a machine to measure the size of a plot of land. He also made strides in developing educational methods. He anticipated the caterpillar track with an invention that he played around with for forty years but that he never successfully developed. He described it as a "cart that carries its own road".
He was married four times, including to Honora Sneyd and to Frances Beaufort, older sister of Francis Beaufort of the Royal Navy. Edgeworth and Francis Beaufort installed a semaphore line for Ireland. Edgeworth was a member of the Lunar Society, an informal organisation of Birmingham-based industrialists, scientists and intellectuals that met regularly to discuss and share ideas relating to their fields of interest. Other members included Erasmus Darwin, Josiah Wedgwood and James Watt.
Richard Edgeworth and his family lived in Ireland at his estate at Edgeworthstown, County Longford, where he reclaimed bogs and improved roads. He sat in Grattan's Parliament for St Johnstown (County Longford) from 1798 until the Act of Union in 1801, and advocated Catholic Emancipation and parliamentary reform. He was a founder-member of the Royal Irish Academy. He died in Edgeworthstown on 13 June 1817.
He was the father of 22 children by his four wives
- Anna Maria Elers (1743–1773), of whom five children
- Honora Sneyd (1751 – 1 May 1780), of whom two children
- Honora Edgeworth (1774–1790)
- Lovell Edgeworth (1775–1842), who inherited the property
- Elizabeth Sneyd (1753–1797), sister of Honora Sneyd, of whom five sons and four daughters
- Elizabeth Edgeworth (1781–1805)
- Henry Edgeworth (1782–1813)
- Charlotte Edgeworth (1783–1807)
- Sophia Edgeworth (1784–1784)
- Charles Sneyd Edgeworth (1786–1864) m. Henrica Broadhurst 1813, succeeded his brother Lovell Edgeworth
- William Edgeworth (1788–1790)
- Thomas Day Edgeworth (1789–1792)
- Honora Edgeworth (1792–1858), married Francis Beaufort (his brother-in-law from his fourth marriage) in 1838
- William Edgeworth (1794–1829), engineer.
- Frances Ann Beaufort (1769–1865), botanical artist, daughter of Daniel Augustus Beaufort and Mary Waller, of whom six children
- Frances Maria Edgeworth (1799–1848) m. Lestock Wilson 1829
- Harriet Edgeworth (1801–1889) m. Richard Butler 1826
- Sophia Edgeworth (1803–1836) m. Barry Fox 1824
- Lucy Jane (1805–1897), married the Irish astronomer Thomas Romney Robinson 1843.
- Francis Beaufort Edgeworth (1809–1846), Mentioned in Thomas Carlyle's Life of Sterling. Married Rosa Florentina Eroles of Spain.
- Michael Pakenham Edgeworth (1812–1881), m. Christina Macpherson 1846, botanist.
- Butler 1972.
- Rees, Abraham, ed. (1802–1820). "The Daily Telegraph". Cyclopædia. Vol. 35. London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme & Brown. Unpaginated work: pages 9-11 of the article entry.
- Beach Combing 2011.
- Butler 1972, p. 489.
- A. W. Skempton (2002). A Biographical Dictionary of Civil Engineers in Great Britain and Ireland: 1500-1830. Thomas Telford. p. 207. ISBN 978-0-7277-2939-2. Retrieved 3 May 2012.
- Barbe, L. (2010), Francis Ysidro Edgeworth : A Portrait with Family and Friends, translated from Catalan by M.C. Black. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing Limited
- Butler, Marilyn (1972). Maria Edgeworth: A Literary Biography. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0198120179. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
- Clarke, Desmond (1965). The ingenious Mr. Edgeworth. Oldbourne. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
- Curtis, Stanley James; Boultwood, Myrtle E. A. (1977). A short history of educational ideas (5th ed.). University Tutorial Press. ISBN 9780723107675.
- Edgeworth, Maria (1820). "RL Edgeworth Esq". The Annual Register. Part II: 1215–1223. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
- Priestman, Judith; Clapinson, Mary; Rogers, Tim (1993). "Catalogue of the papers of Maria Edgeworth (1768-1849), and the Edgeworth family, 17th-19th century". University of Oxford, Bodleian Library. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
- Colvin, Christina Edgeworth. "Edgeworth, Richard Lovell (1744–1817)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/8478. Retrieved 18 March 2015. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
- "The Four Wives of Richard Lovell Edgewort & The Children of Richard Lovell Edgeworth" (Images). English-Irish Edgeworths. House of Edgeworth, South Carolina. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
- MacDonald, Edgar E. (1977). The Education of the Heart: The Correspondence of Rachel Mordecai Lazarus and Maria Edgeworth. UNC Press. ISBN 9781469606095. Retrieved 24 March 2015.
- O'Connor, Maura (2010). The Development of Infant Education in Ireland, 1838-1948: Epochs and Eras. Bern: Lang. ISBN 9783034301428. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
- "Edgeworth Papers. Collection List 40" (PDF). National Library of Ireland. p. 112. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
- "Edgeworth Collection (Longford County Library)". Ask About Ireland. Retrieved 30 March 2015.
- Beach Combing (21 July 2011). "Forgotten Anglo-Irish Inventor Anticipates the Modern Age". Beachcombing's Bizarre History Blog. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
- Works by Richard Lovell Edgeworth at Project Gutenberg
- Works by Richard Lovell Edgeworth at Faded Page (Canada)
- Works by or about Richard Lovell Edgeworth at Internet Archive
- Edgeworth, Richard Lovell; Maria Edgeworth (1820). The Memoirs of Richard Lovell Edgeworth. Vol. 1. London: Hunter, Cradock & Joy.
- Edgeworth, Richard Lovell; Maria Edgeworth (1821). The Memoirs of Richard Lovell Edgeworth. Vol. 2. London: Hunter, Cradock & Joy.
- The four wives of Richard Edgeworth Portraits
- The Edgeworth Family, National Portrait Gallery