Richard Burton was born in 1723 the son of William Burton of Herringswell, Suffolk. He was educated at Eton and Cambridge. He later changed his name, in 1766, to Burton Philipson as a condition laid down in a will. He was commissioned into the 1st Royal Dragoons as a cornet but transferred to Kingston’s Horse as a lieutenant in 1746. This regiment, also called the 15th Duke of Cumberland’s Dragoons, was disbanded in 1748 in which year Burton must have returned to the Royal Dragoons. He became the commanding Officer of the Royals in 1771 and was later promoted to colonel. The portrait shows him in the uniform of the Royal Dragoons c1778. He was promoted to major-general and commissioned to raise the 20th Light Dragoons in 1779 from the Light Troop of the 3rd Dragoon Guards. Two years after the 20th was disbanded (for the second time) in 1783 he was appointed Colonel of the 3rd Dragoon Guards, and promoted to lieutenant-general in 1787. He was also MP for Eye in Suffolk, elected twice. He sat in parliament for a total of 28 years and never spoke, perhaps on account of his deafness and drowsiness. He died on 18 Aug 1792. He was unmarried and lived at Spring Gardens. He is buried in St Helen’s Church Ipswich.
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