AUBREY, Sir John, 3rd Bt. (1680-1743), of Llantriddyd, Glam. and Boarstall, Bucks.
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Family and Education
b. 20 June 1680, o. s. of Sir John Aubrey, 2nd Bt.*, by his 1st w. educ. Jesus, Oxf. 1698. m. 20 June 1701, Mary Stealy (d. 1714), 2s. 2da.; (2) c.1716, Frances, da. of William Jephson* of Boarstall, 2 da.; (3) 1 Feb. 1725, Jane Thomas (d. bef.1741) of Boarstall, s.p. suc. fa. as 3rd Bt. 15 Sept. 1700.1
Sheriff, Glam. 1710–11.
Aubrey was intended for a lucrative marriage. His father had reputedly ‘a much greater regard for the addition of four or five thousand pounds in a portion than for the alliance of any family whatsoever’. Sadly, within a year of succeeding to the baronetcy and the already substantial estate which had been accumulated by earlier shrewd matchmaking, he had been obliged to marry a ‘waiting maid’ of his mother whom he had made pregnant.2
Aubrey followed one family tradition in displaying an interest in antiquarian scholarship: he was one of the subscribers to Edward Lhuyd’s Archaeologia Britannica (1707). His political attitudes, however, showed a more markedly Whiggish strain than had those of his father. In Glamorgan, where he was politically active, he sided with the Mansel interest, ex-Whig and now moderate Tory, against the High Tory coalition ranged against it, backing Thomas Mansel I* in the 1705 general election and being returned on Mansel’s recommendation at a by-election in 1706, and again in 1708. Classed as a Whig in a list dating from early 1708, he voted the following year in favour of the naturalization of the Palatines, and he twice told with Whigs and against Tories, albeit on issues which were not obviously party causes: on 19 Apr., against a rider offered to the Middlesex registry bill; and the next day, to agree with the Lords in an amendment to the fire prevention bill. His most blatantly Whig act was his vote in favour of the impeachment of Dr Sacheverell, which would have made it impossible for Mansel to have nominated him for re-election even had he wished to do so.3
Although Aubrey transferred his residence to Buckinghamshire he does not seem to have participated in elections in his adopted county, but he continued to support the Whig cause in Glamorgan. In 1716 Thomas Hearne visited Boarstall, ‘on purpose to look at a distance, at the great house there’. He added, ‘I say at a distance, because I did not care to go in, the present family of the Aubreys that live there being great enemies to the hereditary succession, for the sake of which I am a sufferer.’ In the merely domestic sphere, Aubrey’s children provided echoes of his own adolescent waywardness: a son was disinherited for the same offence he had committed himself; and a daughter was ‘debauched’ by a clergyman ‘perverted in his principles’. Aubrey died on 16 Apr. 1743, and was buried at Boarstall.4
Ref Volumes: 1690-1715
Author: D. W. Hayton
- 1. Lipscomb, Bucks. i. 75; Foster, London Mar. Lics. 55; IGI, Bucks.; Cardiff Recs. ed. Matthews, v. 498.
- 2. Cumbria RO (Carlisle), Lonsdale mss D/Lons/W2/2/2, James Lowther* to Sir John Lowther, 2nd Bt. I*, 25 Nov. 1699; P. Jenkins, Making of a Ruling Class, 260.
- 3. Glam. Co. Hist. iv. 401, 403, 408, 607; Jenkins, 148; HMC Portland, iv. 490.
- 4. Hearne Colls. v. 192; Jenkins, 260, 263.