Erskine, Thomas, 1st Baron Erskine

(1750-1823)
   Born in Edinburgh, the youngest son the tenth earl of Buchan, he attended the grammar school at St. Andrews. He served in the Navy under Sir David Lindsay, and in the Army under John, Duke of Argyll. Around 1772 he published an anonymous and widely read pamphlet, Abuses in the Army. He went to Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1776 and received an honorary M.A. degree in 1778. He was called to the bar in 1778, and his struggling existence changed when he became a successful defense attorney in several high profile cases: a libel suite brought by Lord Sandwich against Captain Baillie, and the courtmarital of Admiral Lord Keppel for incompetence in the engagement off Ushant against the French fleet. He was created Baron Erskine of Restormel, and Lord Chancellor in 1806. He was buried at the family burial place, Uphall, Linlithgow. The Poetical Works of the Right Honorable, Thomas, Lord Erskine was published in 1823. Some of his poems: "French and English," "James Alan Park," "On Scott's Poem 'The Field of Waterloo,'" "On Tom Moore's Translation of Anacreon," "Petition of Peter."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite DVD, 2006. English Poetry: Author Search. Chadwyck-Healey Ltd., 1995 (http://www.lib.utexas.edu:8080/search/epoetry/author.html). The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The Faber Book of Epigrams and Epitaphs. Geoffrey Grigson, ed. Faber & Faber, 1977. The Humorous Poetry of the English Language. J. Parton, ed. Mason Brothers, 1857. The National Portrait Gallery (www.npg.org.uk).

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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