ROWLEY, William (?1764-1812), of Mount Campbell, co. Leitrim.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1801 - 1802

Family and Education

b. ?1764, 1st s. of Clotworthy Rowley*, and bro. of Samuel Campbell Rowley*. educ. Royal sch. Armagh; Trinity, Dublin 27 Sept. 1779, aged 15; L. Inn 1782, called [I] 1787. unm. suc. fa. 1805.

Offices Held

MP [I] 1790-1800.

Commr. public accts. [I] May 1798-1800; commr. of revenue [I] 1801-11.

Sheriff, co. Leitrim 1794-5; recorder, Kinsale 1796-d.


Like his father, Rowley was a barrister who sat in the Irish parliament on Lord de Clifford’s interest and, again like him, he was at first in opposition, rallied to government by 1795 but opposed the Union, in principle rather than in detail. On 3 Feb. 1800 the viceroy Lord Cornwallis informed the Home secretary ‘It will, I think, be necessary to remove Mr Rowley ... from the board of accounts, but as that step need not be taken immediately, I should be glad to know the sentiments of his Majesty’s ministers upon the subject’. Rowley was forgiven, for no sooner had he taken his seat at Westminster than he was appointed a commissioner of revenue and re-elected, 20 Feb. 1801. He supported Addington’s administration silently, but went out at the dissolution. The premier had mentioned ‘the probability of Mr W. Rowley’s retreat’ in a letter to Lord de Clifford, in anticipation of obtaining the nomination to his seat, though it was Rowley’s brother who replaced him.

Rowley subsequently managed the de Clifford interest in the boroughs of Kinsale and Downpatrick. He died 25 Feb. 1812.

Cornwallis Corresp. iii. 176; HMC Fortescue, vi. 128; Add. 35713, f. 122.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: Arthur Aspinall