Tighe, Edward (1740–1801?), politician, lawyer, and writer, was the second son in the family of three sons and two daughters of William Tighe (1710–66) and his first wife Mary (d. 1748), eldest daughter of John Bligh, 1st earl of Darnley. William Tighe, born on 21 December 1710, was an MP for the boroughs of Clonmines, Co. Wexford (1734–60) and Wicklow (1761–6) and held the office of keeper of records in the Bermingham Tower; he purchased (1741 and 1742) properties at Rosanna, near Newry Bridge, Co. Wicklow, where he built a house; he died 10 September 1766. William's eldest son, William (1738–82), an MP for Athboy (1761–76) and high sheriff of County Wicklow (1771), was a patron of John Wesley, who used Rosanna as an Irish base for preaching. The third son, Richard William (1744–1828), succeeded his father as an MP for Wicklow borough (1767–8). By his second wife, Margaret, eldest daughter and co-heiress of Thomas Theaker, also an MP for Wicklow borough (1735–51), he had one son, Thomas Tighe (1752–1821), who was vicar of Drumgooland, Co. Down (1787–1821), and is noted for having encouraged Patrick Brontë (qv) to go to Cambridge.
Edward Tighe was educated at Eton College (1753–8) before entering St John's College, Cambridge (25 June 1759), and being admitted to the Middle Temple (5 November 1759). His parliamentary career began with his election as a member for Belturbet, Co. Cavan (September 1763); later he represented Wicklow borough (1768–76), Athboy, Co. Meath (1776–83) and Wicklow again (1783–97). At first in opposition, later he supported the administration of Viscount Townshend (qv). For this support he was rewarded with lucrative offices beginning with comptroller of the pipe (1769–1801). After his belated call to the Irish bar (1767) he was recorder of Wicklow borough (1769–1801). He was a commissioner of accounts (1771–95). Under the pseudonym Melantius, Edward Tighe wrote two political pamphlets: A letter addressed to Mr Orde upon the education of the people (1787; new eds, 1788, 1789) and Letters addressed to Mrs Peter La Touche . . . [on] the orphan-houses of England, Ireland, Zeland and Holland (1793). Two theatrical pieces, The force of love, a tragedy (1786), and The cut miser (1788), were adaptations by Tighe of the original works by Nathaniel Lee and Henry Fielding respectively. About his wife nothing is known except that her maiden name was Jones and she was from Co. Westmeath. The couple had one son, George William (1776–1837), whose own wife, Margaret, was the eldest daughter of the 2nd earl of Kingston (qv) and widow of the 2nd earl of Mountcashell. Edward Tighe was still living on 4 March 1801 (when he was appointed customer of Dungarvan) but seems to have died later in the year.