Barry, Richard (1769–93), 7th earl of Barrymore , spendthrift, was born in London on 14 August 1769 and succeeded his father, Richard, to the Irish earldom of Barrymore just before his fourth birthday. In his youth he became excessively interested in racehorses, gambling, practical joking, and amateur theatricals. A member of the circle of the prince of Wales (the future George IV), he was dubbed by him ‘Hellgate’ on account of his recklessness. On coming of age he squandered his family's fortune, spending £60,000 on building and running a private theatre at Wargrave, Berkshire. Soon he was obliged to sell off the Barrymore estates in Ireland, Castle Lyons and Buttevant with 140,000 acres in Co. Cork being bought by John Anderson (qv), a successful entrepreneur. To avoid his creditors he became a member of the British house of commons (for Heytesbury) in March 1791. He married (June 1792) Charlotte Goulding, the sixteen-year-old daughter of a sedan chairman. There were no children. Barrymore became a militia officer and was killed accidentally by an exploding weapon on 6 March 1793 near Folkestone in Kent, while conducting French prisoners-of-war from Dover. He was succeeded by his brother Henry (1770–1823), dubbed ‘Cripplegate’ (because he was lame). Another brother, Augustus (1773–1818), a clergyman and compulsive gambler who was also an acquaintance of the prince, was dubbed ‘Newgate’. Their sister, Carolina (b. 1768), was called ‘Billingsgate’, on account of her language.
Gentleman's Magazine, lxiii (Mar. 1793); J. R. Robinson, The last earls of Barrymore, 1769–1824 (1894); G. E. C., Peerage, i, 446–7; Peter Somerville-Large, Irish eccentrics (1975), 221–5; Burke, IFR, 72; Hist. parl.: commons, 1790–1820, iii, 148