Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V22, Page 815 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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1ST BARON FITZROY JAMES HENRY SOMERSET RAGLAN (1788-1855), British field marshal, was the eighth and youngest son of Henry, 5th duke of Beaufort, by Elizabeth, daughter of Admiral the Hon. Edward Boscawen, and was born on the 3oth of September 1788. His elder brother, General Lord (Robert) Edward (Henry) Somerset (1776—1842), distinguished himself as the leader of the Household Cavalry brigade at Waterloo. Lord Fitzroy Somerset was educated at Westminster school, and entered the army in 1804. In 1807 he was attached to the Hon. Sir Arthur Paget's embassy to Turkey, and the same year he was selected to serve on the staff of Sir Arthur Wellesley in the expedition to Copenhagen. In the following year he accompanied the same general in a like capacity to Portugal, and during the whole of the Peninsular War was at his right hand, first as aide-de-camp and then as military secretary. He was wounded at Busaco, became brevet-major after Fuentes de Onoro, accompanied the stormers of the 52nd light infantry as a volunteer at Ciudad Rodrigo and specially distinguished himself at the storming of Badajoz, being the first to mount the breach, and afterwards showing great resolution and promptitude in securing one of the gates before the French could organize a fresh defence. During the short period of the Bourbon rule in 1814 and 1815 he was secretary to the English embassy at Paris. On the renewal of the war he again became aide-de-camp and military secretary to the duke of Wellington. About this time he married Emily Harriet, daughter of the 3rd earl of Mornington, and Welling-ton's niece. At Waterloo he was wounded in the right arm and had to undergo amputation, but he quickly learned to write with his left hand, and on the conclusion of the war resumed his duties as secretary to the embassy at Paris. From 1818 to 182o, and again in 1826-29, he sat in the House of Commons as member for Truro. In 1819 he was appointed secretary to the duke of Wellington as master-general of the ordnance, and from 1827 till the death of the duke in 1852 was military secretary to him as commander-in-chief. He was then appointed master-general of the ordnance, and was created Baron Raglan. In 1854 he was promoted general and appointed to the command of the English troops sent to the Crimea (see

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