EVELYN, John I (1677-1702), of Rooksnest, Tandridge, Surr.
Available from Boydell and Brewer
Family and Education
b. 3 Oct. 1677, 1st s. of George Evelyn I*; bro. of George Evelyn II* and half-bro. of William Glanville† (formerly Evelyn). ?m. lic. 5 May 1701, Anne, da. and coh. of John Glynne of Ash, Surr. s.p. suc. fa. 19 June 1699.
Succeeding to ‘a fair estate’ at the age of 21, Evelyn had bright prospects which were destined never to be fully realized. Following the example of both his grandfather and father, he managed to secure a seat in an uncontested election at Bletchingley, the borough adjoining the familial estate at Godstone. He was to sit for such a brief period in the House that his politics remain uncertain, although the Evelyns of Godstone were clearly Whiggish in outlook and the borough, under the lordship of Sir Robert Clayton*, had been a Whig preserve since the Revolution. En route to Westminster he visited his kinsman John Evelyn, the diarist, who described him as ‘a young and very hopeful gentleman’. However, within three weeks of the opening of his first session and before he had had any opportunity to make his mark in the House, Evelyn died of smallpox on 13 Nov.
Evelyn’s premature death not only obscures his political outlook, but also helps to fuel speculation concerning his possible marriage to Anne Glynne ‘of Haslemere’. Although a marriage licence was taken out, all secondary sources suggest that both Evelyn and his potential bride died unmarried. Evelyn clearly left no issue, for his family’s entailed estate passed to his younger brother George, who, in 1705, also succeeded to his seat at Bletchingley.1
Ref Volumes: 1690-1715
Author: Perry Gauci
- 1. U. Lambert, Godstone, 291; H. Evelyn, Hist. Evelyn Fam. 218–19; Misc. Gen. and Her. ser. 2, iv. 338–9; BL, Evelyn mss 219, f. 34, travel diary; London Mar. Lic. ed. Foster, 462; Manning and Bray, Surr. iii. 72–73.