Robert Lord Clive
In 1744, when he was a youth of nineteen, Robert Clive arrived in India, as a penniless clerk in the service of the East India Company. Later he joined the army, and his courage and determination won him rapid promotion. Within ten years he was a lieutenant colonel; and when he won the crucial battle of Plassey in 1757, he laid the firm foundations of British rule in India. He was MP for Shrewsbury from 1760 until his death, and was created Baron Clive in 1762.
From 1767 he was constantly in Bath and lived for sometime, ‘in a little pomp’, at Westgate Buildings. Then, in the year of his death, he took a house at 14 the Circus. He was broken down in health, as a result of his long service in India, and the mental strain he had undergone following bitter attacks on his record from politicians and others. His constitution had been seriously undermined by epileptic fits, and by his addiction to opium; and because of these constraints, he was unable to take the waters, for which he had specially come to Bath. In November 1774 he returned to London, and committed suicide at his house in Berkeley Square.
The bronze tablet on the Circus house was unveiled by Field-Marshal Lord Roberts in September, 1902, when he visited Bath to receive the Freedom of the city.