Clive, Edward, Earl of Powis 1754-1839, governor of Madras, was the eldest son of the first Lord Clive, governor of Bengal [qv.]. Succeeding to the Irish barony of Clive on his father's death in 1774, he was returned, although still under age, M.P. for Ludlow, and sat for that borough until his elevation to a British peerage as Baron Clive of Walcot in 1794. He was lord lieutenant of Shropshire from 1775 to 1798 and from 1804 until death. From 1798 until 1803 he was governor of Madras. During the first year of his government the south of India was the scene of the important military operations which, resulting in the capture of Seringapatam and the death of Tippoo Sultán, were followed by General Wellesley's campaign against the freebooter, Dhundaji Wah, and three years later by the second Mahratta war and the campaign in the Deccan, of which the most memorable incident was the battle of Assaye. In all these operations Clive rendered active co-operation by placing the resources of the Madras presidency at the disposal of the generals commanding, and in the year following his retirement from office he received the thanks of both houses of parliament for his services. In the same year, 1804, he was raised to an earldom, with the title of Earl of Powis. It devolved upon Clive, when governor of Madras, to carry into effect, under the orders of Lord Wellesley, the measures by which the nawáb of the Carnatic was deprived of sovereign power and his territories became a British province. In 1805 Clive was nominated lord-lieutenant of Ireland, but owing to Mr. Pitt's death the appointment did not take effect. He does not appear to have subsequently filled any prominent official position. He was remarkable for his physical vigour, which he retained to an advanced age, digging in his garden in his shirt-sleeves at six o'clock in the morning when in his eightieth year. He married in 1784 Lady Henrietta Antonia Herbert, daughter of Henry Arthur, earl of Powis (the last earl of the Herbert family), with whose death that earldom lapsed until it was revived in the person of Clive. He left two sons and two daughters, and died on 16 May 1839, having been apparently well the day before his death.

     Ann. Reg. 1839
     Collins's Peerage of Scotland, vol. v.
     Mill's History of British India, vol. vi.
     Marshman's History of India, vol. ii.

Contributor: A. J. A. [Alexander John Arbuthnot]

Published: 1887