Arthur Hill, 2nd Marquess of Downshire
Arthur Hill, 2nd Marquess of Downshire PC
Privy Council of Ireland
The Privy Council of Ireland was an institution of the Kingdom of Ireland until 31 December 1800 and of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland 1801-1922...

, FRS (3 March 1753 – 7 September 1801), styled Viscount Kilwarlin until 1789 and Earl of Hillsborough from 1789 to 1793, was a British
Kingdom of Great Britain
The former Kingdom of Great Britain, sometimes described as the 'United Kingdom of Great Britain', That the Two Kingdoms of Scotland and England, shall upon the 1st May next ensuing the date hereof, and forever after, be United into One Kingdom by the Name of GREAT BRITAIN. was a sovereign...

The Peerage is a legal system of largely hereditary titles in the United Kingdom, which constitute the ranks of British nobility and is part of the British honours system...

 and MP
Member of Parliament
A Member of Parliament is a representative of the voters to a :parliament. In many countries with bicameral parliaments, the term applies specifically to members of the lower house, as upper houses often have a different title, such as senate, and thus also have different titles for its members,...



The eldest son of Wills Hill, 1st Earl of Hillsborough
Wills Hill, 1st Marquess of Downshire
Wills Hill, 1st Marquess of Downshire PC , known as the Viscount Hillsborough from 1742 to 1751 and as the Earl of Hillsborough from 1751 to 1789, was a British politician of the Georgian era...

 (later Marquess of Downshire
Marquess of Downshire
Marquess of Downshire is a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1789 for Wills Hill, 1st Earl of Hillsborough, a former Secretary of State....

), he was educated at Magdalen College, Oxford
Magdalen College, Oxford
Magdalen College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England. As of 2006 the college had an estimated financial endowment of £153 million. Magdalen is currently top of the Norrington Table after over half of its 2010 finalists received first-class degrees, a record...

 and received his M.A. in 1773. He sat as a Tory
Toryism is a traditionalist and conservative political philosophy which grew out of the Cavalier faction in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. It is a prominent ideology in the politics of the United Kingdom, but also features in parts of The Commonwealth, particularly in Canada...

 for the rotten borough
Rotten borough
A "rotten", "decayed" or pocket borough was a parliamentary borough or constituency in the United Kingdom that had a very small electorate and could be used by a patron to gain undue and unrepresentative influence within Parliament....

 of Lostwithiel
Lostwithiel (UK Parliament constituency)
Lostwithiel was a rotten borough in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1304 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.-History:...

 from 1774 to 1780, and then for Malmesbury
Malmesbury (UK Parliament constituency)
Malmesbury was a parliamentary borough in Wiltshire, which elected two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons from 1275 until 1832, and then one member from 1832 until 1885, when the borough was abolished.- MPs 1275–1508 :...

 until 1784. He also represented Down
Down (Parliament of Ireland constituency)
Down was a constituency represented in the Irish House of Commons until 1800.-History:In the Patriot Parliament of 1689 summoned by King James II, Down was represented with two members.-1689–1801:...

 in the Parliament of Ireland
Parliament of Ireland
The Parliament of Ireland was a legislature that existed in Dublin from 1297 until 1800. In its early mediaeval period during the Lordship of Ireland it consisted of either two or three chambers: the House of Commons, elected by a very restricted suffrage, the House of Lords in which the lords...

 from 1776 until acceding to the peerage in 1793.

Hill enjoyed a number of civil and military appointments in both England and Ireland during this period. He was commissioned a captain
Captain (British Army and Royal Marines)
Captain is a junior officer rank of the British Army and Royal Marines. It ranks above Lieutenant and below Major and has a NATO ranking code of OF-2. The rank is equivalent to a Lieutenant in the Royal Navy and to a Flight Lieutenant in the Royal Air Force...

 in the Hertfordshire Militia on 22 March 1775, and a lieutenant-colonel in the regiment on 4 May 1787, resigning his commission on 4 June 1794. Appointed the deputy governor of County Down
County Down
-Cities:*Belfast *Newry -Large towns:*Dundonald*Newtownards*Bangor-Medium towns:...

 on 6 August 1779, he was picked as High Sheriff
High Sheriff of Down
The High Sheriff of Down is the Sovereign's judicial representative in County Down. Initially an office for lifetime, assigned by the Sovereign, the High Sheriff became annually appointed from the Provisions of Oxford in 1258. Besides his judicial importance, he has ceremonial and administrative...

 of the county in 1785. Hillsborough, as he then was, was chosen a Fellow of the Royal Society on 22 January 1790 and a deputy lieutenant
Deputy Lieutenant
In the United Kingdom, a Deputy Lieutenant is one of several deputies to the Lord Lieutenant of a lieutenancy area; an English ceremonial county, Welsh preserved county, Scottish lieutenancy area, or Northern Irish county borough or county....

 of Berkshire
Berkshire is a historic county in the South of England. It is also often referred to as the Royal County of Berkshire because of the presence of the royal residence of Windsor Castle in the county; this usage, which dates to the 19th century at least, was recognised by the Queen in 1957, and...

 on 12 May 1792.

Upon the death of his father on 7 October 1793, he succeeded him as Marquess of Downshire
Marquess of Downshire
Marquess of Downshire is a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1789 for Wills Hill, 1st Earl of Hillsborough, a former Secretary of State....

, in the Peerage of Ireland
Peerage of Ireland
The Peerage of Ireland is the term used for those titles of nobility created by the English and later British monarchs of Ireland in their capacity as Lord or King of Ireland. The creation of such titles came to an end in the 19th century. The ranks of the Irish peerage are Duke, Marquess, Earl,...

, as well as other subsidiary titles, including that of Earl of Hillsborough in the Peerage of Great Britain
Peerage of Great Britain
The Peerage of Great Britain comprises all extant peerages created in the Kingdom of Great Britain after the Act of Union 1707 but before the Act of Union 1800...

. He also succeeded his father as Hereditary Constable
A constable is a person holding a particular office, most commonly in law enforcement. The office of constable can vary significantly in different jurisdictions.-Etymology:...

 of Hillsborough Fort
Hillsborough, County Down
Hillsborough is a village and townland in County Down, Northern Ireland, situated from the city of Belfast. It is within the Lisburn City Council area....

, and as Custos Rotulorum of Down (16 October) and Governor of Down (17 October). On 7 November, he was appointed to the Privy Council of Ireland
Privy Council of Ireland
The Privy Council of Ireland was an institution of the Kingdom of Ireland until 31 December 1800 and of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland 1801-1922...


Downshire vigorously exerted himself against the Union of Great Britain and Ireland in 1800, and was punished by the Government for his opposition by being dismissed from the Governorship of Down and the colonelcy of the Downshire Militia, and struck off the roll of the Privy Council, on 12 February 1800.


On 29 June 1786, he married Mary Sandys, by whom he had seven children:
  • Arthur Blundell Sandys Trumbull Hill, 3rd Marquess of Downshire (1788–1845)
  • Lt.-Gen. Arthur Moyses William Hill, 2nd Baron Sandys
    Arthur Moyses William Hill, 2nd Baron Sandys
    Lieutenant-General Arthur Moyses William Hill, 2nd Baron Sandys , styled as Lord Arthur Hill until 1836, was an Anglo-Irish soldier and politician.-Background:...

  • Lady Charlotte Hill (15 July 1794 – 30 September 1821)
  • Lady Mary Hill (8 July 1796 – 24 May 1830)
  • Arthur Marcus Cecil Sandys, 3rd Baron Sandys (1798–1863)
  • Lord Arthur Augustus Edwin Hill (13 Aug 1800 – 10 July 1831)
  • Major Lord George Augusta Hill (9 December 1801 – 6 April 1879), married twice and left issue

His last son was born posthumously, as Downshire died on 7 September 1801. His widow, Mary felt his early death was in part due to his humiliation by the Government, and thereafter was a bitter enemy to Castlereagh
Robert Stewart, Viscount Castlereagh
Robert Stewart, 2nd Marquess of Londonderry, KG, GCH, PC, PC , usually known as Lord CastlereaghThe name Castlereagh derives from the baronies of Castlereagh and Ards, in which the manors of Newtownards and Comber were located...

. She was the heiress of her uncle, Edwin Sandys, 3rd Baron Sandys, and to the estates of her grandfather, William Trumbull, including Easthampstead Park
Easthampstead Park
Easthampstead Park is a Victorian mansion in the civil parish of Bracknell in the English county of Berkshire. It is currently a conference centre.-Location:...

. In 1802, after Downshire's death, she was created Baroness Sandys
Baron Sandys
Baron Sandys is a title that has been created three times, once in the Peerage of England, once in the Peerage of Great Britain and once in the Peerage of the United Kingdom....

, with a special remainder to her younger sons and their heirs male in succession and then to her eldest son and his heirs male.

Hill also had a son, Arthur Dore Hill, with his mistress Sarah Dore, who later married William Garrow
William Garrow
Sir William Garrow KC, PC, FRS was a British barrister, politician and judge known for his indirect reform of the advocacy system, which helped usher in the adversarial court system used in most common law nations today...

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