only a month before he died. At the next general election, in 1768, Pryse's support enabled Vaughan to regain the county seat, which he retained un- opposed until 1796. He had become fourth Viscount Lisburne and owner of Trawsgoed on the death of his father in 1766, but since the peerage was an Irish one he was not debarred from sitting in the House of Commons. In the political confusion of the 1760s each MP had to decide his future role. The new Lord Lisburne opted to be a government supporter, not a party man; and for thirteen years he served as what would now be regard- ed as a junior minister. Appointed to sit on the Board of Trade in January 1769, when the Duke of Grafton was Prime Minister, under Lord North he transferred to the Admiralty Board in April 1770, and remained there until Lord North's ministry fell in March 1782. In 1780 Lord North offered Lisburne promotion to the prestigious and lucrative post of Comptroller of the Royal Household, together with the rank of Privy Councillor. North, when informing George III of this decision on 5 September, clearly assumed that Lisburne would accept, but on 24 September he told the King the offer had been declined.7 Lisburne himself informed his friend James Lloyd of Mabws that he preferred 'to keep my present office'.8 Lisburne, indeed, now became the leading Admiralty spokesman in the Commons, an important role in the context of the ongoing American War.9 But the 1780 episode had revealed his hidden agenda. Lisburne's political ambition focussed not on high office but on a British peerage. For his promotion in 1776 to an Irish earldom, which had been first requested in 1770, did not satisfy him.10 What he did not confide in James Lloyd was his unsuccessful request for a British peerage in exchange for his Admiralty post.11 In March 1781 his brother John, then serving as an army general in the West Indies, expressed his own sense of family mortification at the rebuff. 'I would do anything for minis- ters if they had given you the peerage.'12 Despite this disappointment Lisburne chose to follow Lord North out of office in 1782 rather than remain a government man, and in retrospect it can be seen that this loyalty probably cost the Vaughan family a British peerage title. In 1783, when Lord North was briefly in office as Home Secretary in the Duke of Portland's first ministry, the so-called Fox-North coalition, there was cabinet support for Lisburne's peerage, but it was nulli- fied by George Ill's refusal to create any British peerages at all for a ministry he detested. Lisburne did not give up on his quest even when the coalition was in opposition to the ministry of the Younger Pitt. He wrote on the sub- ject to Portland in 1786 and 1790:13 and his papers contain five undated draft