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Algernon Capel, 2nd Earl of Essex (1670-1710), General
Sitter in 4 portraits
Algernon Capel was a soldier and a courtier, who served under William III as a general. He also sat in the House of Lords, and was Lord-Lieutenant first of Dorset then of Hertfordshire from 1692 until his death, a post which made him responsible for local militia. Capel also acted as Constable of the Tower of London, although both his father and grandfather had been locked up there. Capel's father was imprisoned in the Tower in 1683 on suspicion of involvement in the Rye House Plot, an attempt to kill Charles II and his brother James. Before he could be tried he was found in his cell 'dead and wallowing in blood', having presumably cut his own throat.