Thomas Macaulay was born October 25, 1800, at Rothley Temple, Leicestershire, was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, and was called to the Bar in 1826. His political career began in the House of Commons as a Whig member for the borough of Calne, and then for Leeds. In 1834, the year of his successful appointment to the Supreme Council of India codifying criminal law, Macaulay publiushed Essays Critical and Historical. He returned to Britain in 1838 and became a House of Commons member for Edinburgh from 1839 to 1847, during which period he served as Secretary for War in 1839-41 and Paymaster-General in 1846-47. In this period he brought out his immensely popular Lays of Ancient Rome (1842), out of which generations of school-children were taught the story of Horatius. After losing his seat, Macaulay brought out the work that remains a best-seller, his The History of England (1848-55) from James I (1688). This brought him an invitation to be member of the House of Commons for Edinburgh again in 1852, but five years later he was made 1st baron, Lord Macaulay of Rothley Temple. He retired to Holly Lodge, Westminster, and died December 28, 1859.
The letters of Thomas Babington Macaulay, ed. Thomas Pinney, 6 vols. (London: Cambridge University Press, 1974-; DA 3 M3 A4 Robarts Library)