|Henry Richard Charles Wellesley, 1st Earl Cowley, nephew of the Duke of Wellington, was attached to the British embassies at Berne, Frankfurt and to the German Confederation successively. From 1852 to 1867 he was ambassador extraordinary to the French republic. When the unpopular marriage of the Emperor and Eugénie was first announced in 1853, Lord Cowley reported to the Foreign Office in London: 'To hear the way in which men and women talk of the future Empress is astonishing. Things have been repeated to me...which it would be impossible to commit to paper.'
Lord Cowley was employed on a confidential mission to Vienna in 1859, and in 1860 signed a treaty of commerce between France and England in Paris. In July 1867 he retired on a pension of £1700.
He died at 20 Albemarle Street, London on 15 July 1884, and was buried at the parish church of Draycott, near Chippenham.
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