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Edmund Sexton Pery Correspondence: Finding Aid
mssPE 1-347  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Access
  • Administrative Information
  • Related Materials in the Huntington Library
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: Edmund Sexton Pery Correspondence:
    Dates (inclusive): 1759-1790
    Bulk dates: 1770-1785
    Collection Number: mssPE 1-347
    Creator: Pery, Edmund Sexton, Viscount, 1719-1806.
    Extent: 347 boxes in 6 boxes
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Manuscripts Department
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2129
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection contains 347 letters chiefly addressed to Irish politician Edmund Sexton Pery, Viscount Pery (1719-1806) that deal with Irish politics and parliamentary affairs, particularly during Pery's tenure as Speaker of the Irish House of Commons (1771-1785).
    Language: English.


    Open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, contact Reader Services.

    Administrative Information

    Publication Rights

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item]. Edmund Sexton Pery Correspondence, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.


    Purchased from Southeran and Co., 1926. Formerly the property of Lord Emly of Tervoe.

    Related Materials in the Huntington Library

    Copies of selected letters from this collection are held by the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Belfast (PRONI). The calendar of the selected letters, published by PRONI, is available in the information file for this collection.

    Biographical Note

    Edmund Sexton Pery (1719-1806) was an Irish politician. In 1745, Pery was called to the Irish bar and in 1751 he was elected an M.P. for Wicklow, serving from 1751-1760 before becoming an M.P. for Limerick (1760-1785). The Dictionary of National Biography notes that "The journals of the Irish House of Commons bear witness to his activity in promoting the interests of Ireland, particularly of the city of Dublin." From 1760-1785, he represented the city of Limerick, and on March 7, 1771, he was elected speaker of the Irish House of Commons, a position he held until his retirement in 1785. He was created Viscount Pery of Newtown-Pery upon his retirement from politics.

    Scope and Content

    This collection contains 347 letters chiefly addressed to Edmund Sexton Pery, Viscount Pery (1719-1806) that deal with Irish politics and parliamentary affairs, particularly during Pery's tenure as Speaker of the Irish House of Commons (1771-1785); English policies towards Ireland, particularly concerning revenue and trade; Pery's relations with Viscount Townshend and successive Lords Lieutenant of Ireland; and political and ecclesiastical patronage. There are references to legislation of the Irish house and discussions of political situations and changes in government positions, etc. There is some information on Pery's financial and business affairs.
    Persons represented by five or more pieces:
    • Andrews, Francis (18 items, approximately 1756-1774)
    • Bingham, Charles, 1st Earl of Lucan (18 items, 1777-1789)
    • Eden, William, 1st Baron Auckland (9 items, 1780-1781)
    • Ellis, Welbore, 1st Baron Mendip (14 items, 1775-1794)
    • Germain, George Sackville, 1st Viscount Sackville (11 items, 1757-1782)
    • Hamilton, Sackville (5 items, 1780-1787)
    • Hamilton, William Gerard (5 items, 1780-1787)
    • Henley, Robert, 2d Earl of Northington (5 items, 1783-1784)
    • Hobart, John, 2d Earl of Buckinghamshire (11 items, 1776-1783)
    • Jenkinson, Charles, 1st Earl of Liverpool (12 items, 1775-1791)
    • Orde-Powlett, Thomas, 1st Baron Bolton (13 items, 1784-1786)
    • Townshend, George, 1st Marquis Townshend (12 items, 1772-1779)
    Some notable items include:
    • Bingham, Charles, 1st Earl of Lucan. 1780 October3. "The Church, the Sword, the Law, are to govern in the absence of the Ld. Lt. as Irish-men can never be trusted with so important a charge."
    • Grenville, George Nugent Temple, 1st Marquis of Buckingham. 1783 October 23. "... every letter which I send or receive through London is opened at the Post Office. ..."
    • Hamilton, William Gerard. Series of 31 letters to Pery and one to John Hely­Hutchinson. Hamilton was a personal friend of Pery's and the letters include a long discussion of maneuvers to relieve Hamilton of his position as Irish Chancellor of the Exchequer (1763-1784).
    • --------. 1764, Dec. 2. On birth of Pery's daughter: "I think I have a right to expect for the sake of those who are to succeed me twenty years hence, that since Perry has a daughter who will probably draw future secretaries into scrapes by her Beauty, He should likewise have a son, who may imitate his Father, and extricate them, out of them, by his Friendship."
    • Hervey, Frederick Augustus, 4th Earl of Bristol and Bp. of Derry. 1778, May 15. Letter from Rome on the religious implications of war with France.
    A selection of the letters was printed in the H.M.C. Eighth Report, Appendix, 174-208; and in the Fourteenth Report, Appendix IX, 155-99. Note that not all of the letters published, however, are held in this collection.
    The letters were previously mounted in three folio scrapbooks.


    Alphabetical arrangement.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  


    Pery, Edmund Sexton, Viscount, 1719-1806.
    Ireland. Parliament. House of Commons.
    Ireland. Lord Lieutenant (1767-1772 : Townshend)
    Ireland. Lord Lieutenant (1777-1780 : Buckinghamshire)
    Ireland. Lord Lieutenant (1783-1784 : Northington)
    Patronage, Ecclesiastical -- Ireland -- History -- 18th century -- Sources.
    Patronage, Political -- Ireland -- History -- 18th century -- Sources.
    Politicians -- Ireland -- Correspondence.
    Great Britain -- History -- 18th century -- Sources.
    Ireland -- History -- 18th century -- Sources.
    Ireland -- Politics and government -- 1760-1820.


    Letters (correspondence) -- Great Britain -- -- 18th century.