Stanhope, Charles Stanhope, 3d Earl (stănˈəp) [key], 1753–1816, British politician and inventor; grandson of the 1st earl. He was a friend of the younger William Pitt and married (1774) Pitt's sister, Hester. Sitting in the House of Commons (1780–86) before he succeeded to the peerage, he opposed the war with the American colonies and supported parliamentary reform and other measures advocated by Pitt. Stanhope became estranged from Pitt after the outbreak of the French Revolution, opposing the British government's repressive policies at home and its policy of intervention abroad. A vigorous supporter of the French republican ideal, he became known as "Citizen" Stanhope and absented himself from the House of Lords (1795–1800). His indefatigable scientific experiments produced a fireproof stucco, calculating machines, lenses, and, most important, machines for printing and stereotyping. Others, less successful, included experiments on steam navigation. The Stanhope lens and the Stanhope press are named for him. Lady Hester Stanhope was his daughter.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.