|John Francis Cradock was born on 11 Aug 1759, the son of the Archbishop of Dublin. He entered the army in 1777 as a cornet in the 4th Horse but exchanged in 1779 to the Coldstream Guards. In 1786 he was a major in the 13th Regiment of Foot and appointed Lieut-Colonel, commanding officer in 1789. He commanded them in the West Indies and was wounded at Martinique in 1793. He was promoted to major-general in 1798 and was in Ireland when the Irish Rebellion broke out. He was in action at Vinegar Hill and fought against the French when they landed in Ireland. He was wounded at the battle of Ballinamuck. He was also a politician, holding various parliamentary seats for Irish constituencies between 1785 and 1801. He served in the Egyptian campaign in 1801 and was then appointed Commander-in-Chief of the Madras army. In the Peninsula War he was in command of forces in Portugal until the arrival of Arthur Wellesley in April 1809. He was briefly governor of Gibraltar, and in 1811 Governor of Cape Colony until 1814. He became 1st Baron Howden in 1819 in the peerage of Ireland. He was in the peerage of the UK in that title in 1831. He died on 26 July 1839.
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