Thomas Potter (1718–1759) was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1747 and 1759.
Potter was born in 1718, the second son of John Potter, Archbishop of Canterbury. He matriculated, aged 13, at Christ Church, Oxford in 1731, graduating B.A. in 1735, and was admitted to the Middle Temple.Through his father's interest, he was able to secure the Recordership of Bath, a lucrative office.
Potter married firstly Anne Manningham, daughter of Rev. Thomas Manningham, rector of Slinfold, Sussex on 17 February 1740. Anne died on 4 January 1744 and he married secondly a Miss Lowe of Brightwell, Oxfordshire on 14 July 1747.From his second marriage he acquired Segenhoe Manor at Ridgmont, near Woburn, Bedfordshire.
Potter was a recognised member of the Hellfire Club, in Buckinghamshire, founded by Francis Dashwood, 11th Baron le Despencer and acquired a reputation as a leading rake. Potter was a friend of John Wilkes, whom he considered as something of a protégé. He was later accused of corrupting Wilkes who had been relatively innocent until that point.He was believed to be the author of Essay on Woman, a crude parody of Alexander Pope's Essay on Man . The authorship of this was later attributed to John Wilkes, when it was read out in the House of Lords, during his expulsion from parliament in 1764.
In 1747 Potter was elected as Member of Parliament for St Germans in Cornwall. In 1754 he was elected as MP for Aylesbury, a seat controlled by the powerful Grenville family with whom he was associated from then on. In 1756 he became a Vice-Treasurer of Ireland, another lucrative post, which did not require him to move to Ireland.He was returned as MP for Okehampton in 1757. Politically he was aligned with William Pitt and was his devoted follower. He was a staunch supporter of Britain's participation in the Seven Years War. He tried to interest his son Thomas in finding a seat in Parliament.
Potter was in ill health for a long time, suffering in particular from gout.In 1759 he died at his residence in Segenhoe at the age of forty one and was buried in nearby Segenhoe churchyard. He left a son and two daughters, one of which married Malcolm MacQueen, to whom Potter's estates passed.
Isaac Barré was an Irish soldier and politician. He earned distinction serving with the British Army during the Seven Years' War and later became a prominent Member of Parliament, in which role he became a vocal supporter of William Pitt. He is known for coining the term "Sons of Liberty" in reference to American colonists who opposed the British government's policies.
John Wilkes was a British radical, journalist and politician. He was first elected a Member of Parliament in 1757. In the Middlesex election dispute, he fought for the right of his voters—rather than the House of Commons—to determine their representatives. In 1768, angry protests of his supporters were suppressed in the St George's Fields Massacre. In 1771, he was instrumental in obliging the government to concede the right of printers to publish verbatim accounts of parliamentary debates. In 1776, he introduced the first bill for parliamentary reform in the British Parliament.
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Hester Grenville, 1st Countess Temple, 2nd Viscountess Cobham was an English noblewoman.
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Richard Rigby PC, was an English civil servant and politician who sat in the British House of Commons for 43 years from 1745 to 1788. He served as Chief Secretary for Ireland and Paymaster of the Forces. Rigby accumulated a fortune serving the Crown and politician wheeler-dealers in the dynamic 18th century parliament, and this money eventually ended up endowing the Pitt Rivers Museum.
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Thomas Bladen (1698–1780) was a colonial governor in North America and politician who sat in the British House of Commons between 1727 and 1741. He served as the 19th Proprietary Governor of Maryland from 1742 to 1747.
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Brownlow Cust, 1st Baron Brownlow, of Belton House near Grantham in Lincolnshire, was a British Tory Member of Parliament.
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Miles Barne was an English land-owner and a Member of Parliament for Dunwich between 1747 and 1754, and again between 1764 and 1777. Born into a family long associated with London merchant circles, Barne accumulated sufficient wealth to purchase an estate in Suffolk and became prominent amongst local freeman. Dunwich in Suffolk, his constituency, was a pocket borough, controlled by the Downing land-owning family; Barne, the local Vanneck family and the freemen of the borough slowly ousted the Downings' influence and Barne established himself as one of the town's new members, which gave his family the seat until it was abolished in the 1832 Reforms.
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|Parliament of Great Britain|
John Hynde Cotton
| Member of Parliament for St Germans |
With: Richard Eliot 1747–48
Edward Craggs-Eliot 1748–54
The Earl of Inchiquin
| Member of Parliament for Aylesbury |
With: John Willes
| Member of Parliament for Okehampton |
With: Robert Vyner
George Brydges Rodney