Anthony Chamier

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Anthony Chamier (6 October 1725 12 October 1780) [1] was an English official, financier and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1778 to 1780. He was known also as friend of Samuel Johnson.

The House of Commons is the elected lower house of the bicameral parliaments of the United Kingdom and Canada and historically was the name of the lower houses of the Kingdom of England, Kingdom of Great Britain, Kingdom of Ireland, Northern Ireland, and Southern Ireland. Roughly equivalent bodies in other countries which were once part of the British Empire include the United States House of Representatives, the Australian House of Representatives, the New Zealand House of Representatives, and India's Lok Sabha.

Samuel Johnson English poet, biographer, essayist, and lexicographer

Samuel Johnson, often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English writer who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, playwright, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer. He was a devout Anglican and a generous philanthropist. Politically, he was a committed Tory. The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography describes Johnson as "arguably the most distinguished man of letters in English history". He is the subject of James Boswell's The Life of Samuel Johnson, described by Walter Jackson Bate as "the most famous single work of biographical art in the whole of literature".


Anthony Chamier, 1767 portrait by Sir Joshua Reynolds Sir Joshua Reynolds - Anthony Chamier - Google Art Project.jpg
Anthony Chamier, 1767 portrait by Sir Joshua Reynolds


From a Huguenot background, Chamier was born on 6 October 1725, and baptised in the Walloon chapel, Threadneedle Street, London, on 19 October, his parents being Daniel Chamier and Susanne de la Mejanelle. Early in life he was a broker on the Stock Exchange, as his enemies in later years did not allow him to forget. [2]

Threadneedle Street street in the City of London, London, England

Threadneedle Street is a street in the City of London, England between Bishopsgate at its northeast end and Bank junction in the southwest. It is one of nine streets that converge at Bank.

Royal Exchange, London building in the City of London, England

The Royal Exchange in London was founded in the 16th century by the merchant Sir Thomas Gresham on the suggestion of his factor Richard Clough to act as a centre of commerce for the City of London. The site was provided by the City of London Corporation and the Worshipful Company of Mercers, who still jointly own the freehold. It is trapezoidal in shape and is flanked by Cornhill and Threadneedle Street, which converge at Bank junction in the heart of the City. The building's original design was inspired by a bourse Gresham had seen in Antwerp and was Britain's first specialist commercial building.

Through his wife's connection Chamier obtained a place in the public service; and in January 1772 was promoted by Lord Barrington to the post of deputy secretary at war. Philip Francis brutally criticised the appointment. [2]

William Barrington, 2nd Viscount Barrington British politician

William Wildman Shute Barrington, 2nd Viscount Barrington PC was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons for 38 years from 1740 to 1778. He was best known for his two periods as Secretary at War during Britain's involvement in the Seven Years War and American War of Independence.

Philip Francis (politician) British politician

Sir Philip Francis was an Irish-born British politician and pamphleteer, the supposed author of the Letters of Junius, and the chief antagonist of Warren Hastings. His accusations against the latter led to the impeachment of Warren Hastings and Elijah Impey by Parliament. He belonged to the Whig party.

Chamier was created under-secretary of state for the southern department in 1775, and on 10 June 1778 was elected Member of Parliament for Tamworth. On 11 September 1780, a month and a day before his death, he was re-elected there. He died in Savile Row, London, on 12 October 1780, and was buried at St James's, Piccadilly. [2]

Tamworth (UK Parliament constituency) Parliamentary constituency in the United Kingdom, 1997 onwards

Tamworth is a constituency represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2010 by Christopher Pincher, a Conservative.

Savile Row street in Mayfair, London, England

Savile Row is a street in Mayfair, central London. Known principally for its traditional bespoke tailoring for men, the street has had a varied history that has included accommodating the headquarters of the Royal Geographical Society at 1 Savile Row, where significant British explorations to Africa and the South Pole were planned; and more recently, the Apple office of the Beatles at 3 Savile Row, where the band's final live performance was held on the roof of the building.


Chamier was an original member in 1764 of the Literary Club, and Samuel Johnson, when drawing up his scheme of a university at St Andrews, assigned to him the chair of "commercial politics". His country house was at Streatham; Johnson used to visit there, for example on his seventieth birthday, and asked Chamier for favours on behalf of acquaintances. [2]

The Club (dining club) London dining club founded in 1764 by Joshua Reynolds, Samuel Johnson, and Edmund Burke

The Club or Literary Club is a London dining club founded in February 1764 by the artist Joshua Reynolds and essayist Samuel Johnson, with Edmund Burke, the Irish philosopher-politician.

Streatham district in South London, England

Streatham is a district in south London, England, mostly in the London Borough of Lambeth but with some areas to the west stretching out into the neighbouring London Borough of Wandsworth. It is centred 5 miles (8.0 km) south of Charing Cross. The area is identified in the London Plan as one of 35 major centres in Greater London.

Chamier was elected a fellow of the Royal Society in 1767. [3] He sat for Sir Joshua Reynolds three times (December 1762, January 1767, and November 1777), and two houses which Reynolds particularly liked were those of the Hornecks and Chamier. [2]

Royal Society English learned society for science

The President, Council and Fellows of the Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, commonly known as the Royal Society, is a learned society. Founded on 28 November 1660, it was granted a royal charter by King Charles II as "The Royal Society". It is the oldest national scientific institution in the world. The society is the United Kingdom's and Commonwealth of Nations' Academy of Sciences and fulfils a number of roles: promoting science and its benefits, recognising excellence in science, supporting outstanding science, providing scientific advice for policy, fostering international and global co-operation, education and public engagement.


Chamier married Dorothy, daughter and coheiress of Robert Wilson, merchant of St Mary Axe, London. Her sister married Thomas Bradshaw, who became private secretary to the Duke of Grafton, and joint secretary of the treasury in the Chatham and Grafton administrations. [2]

Chamier left no issue, and his property passed by will to his nephew, John Deschamps, with a testamentary injunction to take the name and arms of the Chamier family. [2]



Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain :  Stephen, Leslie, ed. (1887). "Chamier, Anthony". Dictionary of National Biography . 10. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 

Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Edward Thurlow
Thomas de Grey
Member of Parliament for Tamworth
1778 1780
With: Thomas de Grey to September 1780
John Courtenay from September 1780
Succeeded by
John Calvert
John Courtenay

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