Dundas, Henry, 1742-1811

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1742-04-28
Death 1811-05-28
Britons
English

Biographical notes:

Henry Dundas, the first Viscount Melville (1742-1811), statesman, was the father of Robert Saunders Dundas, the second Viscount Melville (1771-1851), also a statesman. Henry Dundas was educated at Edinburgh High School and University, before becoming solicitor-general for Scotland in 1766. He was M.P. for Midlothian 1774-1790, except for a few months in 1782, when he sat for Newtown, Isle of Wight. He was lord advocate 1775-1783, lord rector of Glasgow University 1781-1783, privy councillor, and treasurer of the navy 1782-1800. In 1788 he became chancellor of St Andrews and between 1790 and 1802 was M.P. for Edinburgh, during which time he was home secretary 1791-1794, president of the board of control 1793-1801, and secretary for war 1794-1801. He planned and carried out the Egyptian campaign of 1801 against the opinion of Pitt and the king. He was created Viscount Melville of Melville and Baron Dunira in 1802, and was first lord of the admiralty 1804-1805. After a period of impeachment, he was restored to the privy council in 1807. Robert Saunders Dundas was M.P. for Hastings in 1794, for Rye in 1796, and for Midlothian in 1801. He became keeper of the signet for Scotland in 1800, a privy councillor in 1807, president of the board of control in 1807 and 1809, Irish secretary in 1809, first lord of the admiralty 1812-1827, and chancellor of St Andrews University in 1814. He was knighted in 1821. Melville Sound was so named in recognition of his interest in Arctic exploration.

From the guide to the Miscellaneous literary and historical manuscripts apparently from the collection of the first or second Lord Melville, ca. 1789-1805, (Leeds University Library)

From the guide to the Collection of autograph letters, notes, and related material, mainly sent to the first and second Lords Melville, 1755-1848, (Leeds University Library)

English statesman.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [London], to Baillie, 1791 July 4. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270859988

Title: 1st Viscount Melville

British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000001083.0x00000e

Member of the Board of Control in 1784 and henceforth always had a potential voice in Indian affairs; Home Secretary, 1791; President of the Board of Control June 1793-April 1801; Secretary for War, 1794-1801.

From the description of Letter: Wimbledon, to Lord Clive, 1800 August 29. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122476428

From the description of Considerations on the subject of a treaty between Great Britain and Holland, relative to their interests in India / by Mr. Dundas, 1787. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122373937

British Secretary of State for War, 1794-1801, and First Lord of the Admiralty, 1804-1805.

From the description of Papers, 1779-1813. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 19406002

From the description of Letters, 1777-1831. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 40329057

From the description of Papers, 1779-1813. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 86096431

British statesman.

From the description of Letter signed : Whitehall, to Lord Teignmouth, 1796 June 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270874813

Henry Dundas Melville was the First Viscount Melville and was Solicitor General of Scotland.

From the description of Miscellaneous manuscripts, n.d. (University of Pennsylvania Library). WorldCat record id: 191536786

British naval officer and public official.

From the description of Papers of Henry and Robert Saunders Dundas, 1st and 2d Viscounts Melville, 1661-1829. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79898170

Dundas, 1st viscount of Melville, a Scottish lawyer and politician, was appointed solicitor-general for Scotland, served in the House of Commons, was treasurer of the navy, and as the practical head of the Board of Control from its inception in 1784 (president, 1793- ) managed Indian affairs for over 16 years.

From the description of Correspondence on Indian affairs : manuscript, 1782-1800. (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 612375322

Member of the Board of Control in 1784 and henceforth always had a potential voice in Indian affairs; Home Secretary, 1791; President of the Board of Control June 1793-April 1801;

From the description of Letters : to Wellesley, 1797-1811. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122565775

Melville's career included terms as solicitor-general, privy-counsellor and treasurer of the navy, secretary for the home department, secretary of war, and first lord of the admiralty.

From the description of Letter, ca. 1800. (Harvard Law School Library). WorldCat record id: 235127591

Henry Dundas (1742-1811), was born in Edinburgh into an influential legal family. He was the fourth son of Robert Dundas (1685-1753), Lord President of the Court of Session.

Dundas entered the Faculty of Advocates in 1763, but gradually turned away from the legal profession to pursue a political career. He went on to hold a number of influential positions: Solicitor-General for Scotland (1766); MP for Midlothian (1774-1790); Lord Advocate (1775-1783); Privy Councillor and Treasurer of the Navy (1782-1783 and 1784-1800); Keeper of the Scottish Signet (1782); MP for Edinburgh (1790-1802); President of the Board of Control (1793-1801); First Lord of the Admiralty (1804-1805).

In 1791, Dundas entered the Cabinet as Secretary of State for the Home Department, a position held until 1794 when he became War Secretary under Pitt the Younger (1794-1801). Ultimately, such was his political power that he was nicknamed 'the uncrowned King of Scotland' .

In 1802 Dundas was elevated to the peerage as the first Viscount Melville of Melville and Baron Dunira, but his career was eventually ruined by an investigation into the financial affairs of the Navy. In 1806 he was impeached by the House of Lords for the misappropriation of public money. Although it ended in an acquittal, the damage was done and he never again held office. An earldom was offered in 1809 but declined.

Robert Dundas (1771-1851) was Henry Dundas's only son. He followed in his father's footsteps, initially pursuing a career in the law, and later in politics.

Dundas served as MP for Hastings (1794), Rye (1796) and Midlothian (1801). From 1800, he was Keeper of the Signet of Scotland. He became a Privy Counsellor in 1807 and was made President of the Board of Control in the same year.

In 1811, Dundas succeeded his father as the 2nd Viscount Melville and also became Lord Privy Seal in Scotland. The following year, again following his father, he was appointed First Lord of the Admiralty, a position he held from 1812 to 1827, and from 1828 to 1830.

From 1814, Dundas also served as Chancellor of the University of St Andrews and was made a Knight of the Thistle in 1821. He died in Edinburgh in 1851.

From the guide to the Correspondence of Henry and Robert Dundas (First and Second Viscounts Melville), 1777-1849, (Lloyds Banking Group Archives (Edinburgh))

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Subjects:

  • Letters 19th century
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  • Taxation
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  • Manuscripts, English--Specimens
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Occupations:

  • Public officers
  • Governors

Places:

  • Europe History 1789-1815 Sources (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Sri Lanka, Asia (as recorded)
  • Doddington, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Benares, India (as recorded)
  • Ratisbon, Bavaria (as recorded)
  • Persia, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Meath, county of, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Bedford Level, counties Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire (as recorded)
  • Bhotan, India (as recorded)
  • Verdun, France (as recorded)
  • Carnatic Region, India (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Persia, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Scotland (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Wisbeach, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Malabar, India (as recorded)
  • Soham, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Ridge, Hertfordshire (as recorded)
  • King's Lynn, Norfolk (as recorded)
  • Egypt (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Malta, Europe (as recorded)
  • James Island, R. Gambia (as recorded)
  • Morocco, North Africa (as recorded)
  • Gloucestershire, England (as recorded)
  • Malabar, India (as recorded)
  • Ceylon, Asia (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Peregil Island, Morocco (as recorded)
  • United States, North America (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Travancore State, India (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Mysore State, India (as recorded)
  • Jena, Saxony (as recorded)
  • Cape of Good Hope, South Africa (as recorded)
  • Poland, Kingdom of, Europe (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Haddenham, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Mauritius, Indian Ocean (as recorded)
  • Liverpool, Lancashire (as recorded)
  • Huntingdon, Huntingdonshire (as recorded)
  • Gibraltar, Spain (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Red Sea, Asia (as recorded)
  • Scotland, United Kingdom (as recorded)
  • Madras, India (as recorded)
  • Turkey, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Carnatic, India (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Jamaica, Central America (as recorded)
  • Ceylon, Asia (as recorded)
  • Carnatic Region, India (as recorded)
  • Edinburgh, Scotland (as recorded)
  • Grenada, the W. Indies (as recorded)
  • Jamaica, Central America (as recorded)
  • Derbyshire, England (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Middlesex, England (as recorded)
  • Saba, West Indies (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Canada, North America (as recorded)
  • West Indies, British (as recorded)
  • Scotland, United Kingdom (as recorded)
  • Tanjore, India (as recorded)
  • St Lucia, the Carribean (as recorded)
  • Ulster, Province of, Northern Ireland (as recorded)
  • Palma, Majorca (as recorded)
  • Leeds, Yorkshire (as recorded)
  • Zante, the Ionian Islands (as recorded)
  • Bengal, India (as recorded)
  • Scotland (as recorded)
  • Paris, France (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Saint Helena, South Atlantic Ocean (as recorded)
  • Malta, Europe (as recorded)
  • Scotland, United Kingdom (as recorded)
  • Coleshill, Warwickshire (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Dresden, Saxony (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Tipperary, county of, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Nassau, New York (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Greenwich, Kent (as recorded)
  • New York, U.S.A. (as recorded)
  • Northumberland, England (as recorded)
  • St Lucia, the Carribean (as recorded)
  • Paris, France (as recorded)
  • Scotland, United Kingdom (as recorded)
  • Persia, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Naples, Italy (as recorded)
  • India (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Andaman Islands, Asia (as recorded)
  • Chinsura, Bengal (as recorded)
  • America (as recorded)
  • Ludford, Lincolnshire (as recorded)
  • Ulster, Province of, Northern Ireland (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Hyères, France (as recorded)
  • Crondall, Hampshire (as recorded)
  • St. Eufemia, Bay of, Spain (as recorded)
  • Ukraine, Europe (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Gibraltar, Spain (as recorded)
  • Leeward Islands, the Carribean (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Willemstad, the Netherlands (as recorded)
  • Huntingdonshire, England (as recorded)
  • Egypt, Africa (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Cerigo, Greece (as recorded)
  • Afghanistan, Asia (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Toulon, Var (as recorded)
  • Kensington Palace, Middlesex (as recorded)
  • Cromer, Norfolk (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Malta, Europe (as recorded)
  • St. Eustatius, West Indies (as recorded)
  • San Marta, Italy (as recorded)
  • Genoa, Italy (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Liskeard, Cornwall (as recorded)
  • Morocco, North Africa (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Killala, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Australia, Australia (as recorded)
  • Port Canning, Bengal (as recorded)
  • New York, N. America (as recorded)
  • Walmer, Kent (as recorded)
  • Greenland, Denmark (as recorded)
  • Freshwell Hundred, Essex (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Bantry Bay, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Bharatpur State, India (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Canada, North America (as recorded)
  • Egypt, Africa (as recorded)
  • Italy, Europe (as recorded)
  • Coromandel Coast, Sri Lanka (as recorded)
  • Guernsey, Channel Islands (as recorded)
  • Liskeard, Cornwall (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Switzerland, Europe (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Battersea, Surrey (as recorded)
  • Portugal, Kingdom of, Europe (as recorded)
  • Brest, France (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Killiney Bay, Dublin (as recorded)
  • Australia, Australia (as recorded)
  • Cardiganshire, Wales (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Corsica, France (as recorded)
  • Daylesford, Worcestershire (as recorded)
  • Oudh, India (as recorded)
  • County Wicklow, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Poland, Kingdom of, Europe (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • Carthagena, Spain (as recorded)
  • Orissa, India (as recorded)
  • Ionian Islands, Greece (as recorded)
  • Ely, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Ireland (as recorded)
  • Turkey, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Ceylon, Asia (as recorded)
  • Arcot State, India (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • Gwalior, India (as recorded)
  • Corsica, France (as recorded)
  • Auerstädt, Saxony (as recorded)
  • Madras, India (as recorded)
  • Tanjore, Madras (as recorded)
  • Manchester, Lancashire (as recorded)
  • St Martin, West Indies (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Ceylon, Asia (as recorded)
  • Cape of Good Hope, South Africa (as recorded)
  • Greenwich, Kent (as recorded)
  • Lisbon, Portugal (as recorded)
  • Egypt, Africa (as recorded)
  • Nevis, West Indies (as recorded)
  • Seringapatam, Mysore (as recorded)
  • Waterloo, Belgium (as recorded)
  • Stillingfleet, East Riding of Yorkshire (as recorded)
  • Turkey, Asia minor (as recorded)
  • Sunderland, Durham (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • Yorkshire, England (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Tanjore, India (as recorded)
  • Barham, Kent (as recorded)
  • Holborn and Finsbury, Middlesex (as recorded)
  • Antwerp, Belgium (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Avignon, Vaucluse (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • Arcot State, India (as recorded)
  • Newfoundland, Canada (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Vesuvius, Italy (as recorded)
  • Scotland (as recorded)
  • Corfu, the Ionian Islands (as recorded)
  • Edinburgh (Scotland) (as recorded)
  • Persian Gulf, Asia (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Norwich, Norfolk (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Algiers, Africa (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Shirburn Castle, Oxfordshire (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Bangalore, India (as recorded)
  • Cheshire, England (as recorded)
  • Ceylon, Asia (as recorded)
  • Châtillon-sur-Seine, France (as recorded)
  • Bombay, India (as recorded)
  • Westchester, America (as recorded)
  • Isle of Ely, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Mauritius, Indian Ocean (as recorded)
  • Plymouth, Devon (as recorded)
  • Cambridge, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Newfoundland, Canada (as recorded)
  • Cyprus, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Ostend, Flanders (as recorded)
  • Lille, France (as recorded)
  • Bengal, India (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • West Indies, America (as recorded)
  • Surat, Bombay (as recorded)
  • Acre, Syria (as recorded)
  • Podolia, Russia (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Carnatic Region, India (as recorded)
  • Madras, India (as recorded)
  • Mauritius, Africa (as recorded)
  • New York, N. America (as recorded)
  • Carnatic Region, India (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Scotland, United Kingdom (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Downpatrick, Down (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Guadeloupe, Mexico (as recorded)
  • Bengal, India (as recorded)
  • Madras, India (as recorded)
  • Trinidad, the Carribean (as recorded)
  • Connaught, Province of, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Dunira, Perthshire (as recorded)
  • Portugal, Europe (as recorded)
  • China, Asia (as recorded)
  • Madras, India (as recorded)
  • Madras, India (as recorded)
  • County Durham, England (as recorded)
  • Spring Vale Asylum, Staffordshire (as recorded)
  • Calabria, Italy (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • Portoferraio, Elba (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Holland, the Netherlands (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • Turkey, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Tibet, Asia (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • Zafarin Islands, Morocco (as recorded)
  • Dominica, the W. Indies (as recorded)
  • Lancashire, England (as recorded)
  • Lisbon, Portugal (as recorded)
  • Cambridge, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Avignon, Vaucluse (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Bremen, Germany (as recorded)
  • County Wicklow, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Brest, France (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Geneva, Switzerland (as recorded)
  • River Ouse, Norfolk (as recorded)
  • Majorca, Spain (as recorded)
  • Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • America (as recorded)
  • Malta, Europe (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Thorney, Suffolk (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Genoa, Italy (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Cephalonia, Greece (as recorded)
  • West Indies, British (as recorded)
  • Mysore State, India (as recorded)
  • Wilcott, Great Ness (as recorded)
  • Gloucestershire, England (as recorded)
  • Arcot State, India (as recorded)
  • Bombay, India (as recorded)
  • Belle Ile, France (as recorded)
  • River Gambia, West Africa (as recorded)
  • Greenwich, Kent (as recorded)
  • Brabant, the Netherlands (as recorded)
  • Dublin, Ireland (as recorded)
  • Yorkshire, England (as recorded)
  • Levant, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • Sri Lanka, Asia (as recorded)
  • China, Asia (as recorded)
  • Wisbeach, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Lewes, Sussex (as recorded)
  • Berne, Switzerland (as recorded)
  • Seringapatam, Mysore (as recorded)
  • Gozo, Malta (as recorded)
  • Madalena Islands, Sardinia (as recorded)
  • Zuyder Zee, Holland (as recorded)
  • Turkey, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • San Domingo, the Carribean (as recorded)
  • Cape of Good Hope, South Africa (as recorded)
  • Maida, Calabria (as recorded)
  • Naples and Sicily, Kingdom of, Italy (as recorded)
  • United States of America (as recorded)
  • Martinique, the W. Indies (as recorded)
  • Pondicherry, India (as recorded)
  • Charleston, South Carolina (as recorded)
  • Cape St. Vincent, Portugal (as recorded)
  • India (as recorded)
  • India (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Staten Island, North America (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • Corsica, France (as recorded)
  • Tripoli, Lybia (as recorded)
  • Hanau, Germany (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Demerara, British Guiana (as recorded)
  • Nova Scotia, North America (as recorded)
  • Long Island, New York (as recorded)
  • Maintz, Germany (as recorded)
  • Great Britain (as recorded)
  • Wilcott, Great Ness (as recorded)
  • Turkey, Asia Minor (as recorded)
  • Boulogne, France (as recorded)
  • Belfast, Antrim (as recorded)
  • Cape of Good Hope, South Africa (as recorded)
  • Genoa, Italy (as recorded)
  • Ireland (as recorded)
  • Ireland, Europe (as recorded)
  • London, England (as recorded)
  • Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire (as recorded)
  • Netherlands, Europe (as recorded)
  • River Gambia, West Africa (as recorded)
  • San Domingo, the Carribean (as recorded)
  • India, Asia (as recorded)
  • Egypt (as recorded)
  • Pett, Sussex (as recorded)
  • Mysore State, India (as recorded)
  • Radstadt, Baden (as recorded)
  • Alexandria, Egypt (as recorded)
  • Central Asia, Asia (as recorded)