ROYAL INSTITUTION OF GREAT BRITAIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL INSTITUTION OF GREAT BRITAIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
George John Spencer, 2nd Earl Spencer and Viscount Althorp (1758-1834), British politician. Spencer was born at Wimbledon Park, London, and one of his godparents was King George II. He was educated at Harrow School then at Trinity College, Cambridge where he graduated Master of Arts. From 1780-83 he served as a Whig member of parliament, moving to the Lords on acceeding to the Earldom on the death of his father. From 1794 to 1801 he was the First Lord of the Admiralty and in 1806-7 was Home Secretary. From 1813 to 185 he was President of the Royal Institution. Spencer was known for his love of literature and his collection of books numbered some 40, 000 by his death.
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