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Hamilton was educated at Harrow and then Oxford, and spent a significant part of his early years in Italy. In 1802 he entered political life, becoming Whig M.P. for Lancaster, though he was summoned to the House of Lords in his father’s barony of Dutton in 1806. Succeeding his father in 1819, the 10th Duke took no prominent part in debates in the House of Lords.
In 1832 the 10th Duke’s daughter, Lady Susan Hamilton married Henry Pelham-Clinton, Earl of Lincoln [later to become 5th Duke of Newcastle under Lyne]. Hamilton was an intensely loyal family man, and extended his support to his son-in-law. When Lincoln found himself without a parliamentary seat, for example, following his defeat in South Nottinghamshire in 1846, Hamilton secured the Falkirk Burghs constituency for him.
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