Mid-1800s calling card - Sir Ralph Abercromby Minister Plenipotentiary

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Card in french:

               Sir Ralph Abercromby
Envoyé Extraordinaire et Ministre Plénipotentiare
           de Sa Majesté Britannique
'Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary of the British Majesty'.
UR corner fold, bit stained.
5.25 x 9.25 cm.

Hon. Ralph Abercromby was appointed Minister Plenipotentiary to the Germanic Confederation on January 2nd 1839, and the same to Hesse-Cassel on July 25th, 1839, and then in the same position to Sardinia from May 30th 1840 to September 1847, and then again in 1850.


Ralph Abercromby, 2nd Baron Dunfermline KCB FRSE (6 April 1803 – 2 July 1868) was a Scottish nobleman and diplomat, styled The Honourable from 1839 to 1858.

Ralph Abercromby was the son and heir of James Abercromby, the barrister and Whig politician raised to the peerage as Baron Dunfermline on retirement in 1839, and Lady Mary Anne (Marianne) Leigh. Abercomby was educated at Eton and Peterhouse, Cambridge.

He entered the Diplomatic Service, becoming an attaché at Frankfurt in 1821 and a précis writer in the Foreign Office in 1827. He was Secretary of Legation at Berlin from 1831 to 1835, and Minister at Florence from 1835 to 1838. On 18 September 1838 he married Lady Mary Elizabeth (Gilbert) Elliot-Murray-Kynynmound, daughter of the Earl of Minto. From 1838 to 1840 he was Minister to the German Confederation, from 1840 to 1851 Minister at Turin, and from 1851 to 1858 Minister at The Hague.

In 1851 he was awarded the KCB. Upon his father's death in 1858 he succeeded to the Barony, and lived at the family home Colinton House, Midlothian (now in Edinburgh). In 1863 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, upon the nomination of Sir John M'Neill.

He died without a male heir in 1868, and the Barony became extinct.