HAMILTON, Hon. George (c.1697-1775).
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Family and Education
M.P. [I] 1727-60.
Ensign 13 Ft. 1727, out by 1740; dep. cofferer to Prince of Wales Oct. 1742-51.
Hamilton acquired by marriage the Coward family’s estates in and around Wells, for which he stood unsuccessfully as a Whig in 1722, subsequently petitioning, also unsuccessfully. He attributed his defeat to Walpole, who, he claimed, after promising to be for him, had ‘allowed all the Government’s servants and his dependants to vote against him’. In 1734 he was returned for Wells as an opposition Whig but was unseated on petition, again owing to Walpole, who actively intervened against him.1 In 1747 he was once more returned for Wells, this time as a supporter of the Prince of Wales, in whose household he had obtained a place through the influence of his sister, Lady Archibald Hamilton, the Prince’s mistress.2 A petition was presented against him, but its hearing, after being fixed for 10 Mar. 1748 at the bar of the House, was put off till 6 July, which meant till the next session. ‘Pray tell Mr. Hamilton that I congratulate him on his reprieve’, wrote Henry Bathurst to another Leicester House man, Sir John Cust, ‘which I hope the mercy of the ministry will hereafter extend into a pardon’. Apparently it did, for the petition was withdrawn, though Hamilton was classed as Opposition.
After Frederick’s death another of his followers, Sir Edmond Thomas, wrote to Cust:
I told you some time since what Fox would do at Malmesbury - he will get a footing likewise at Wells if poor Hamilton is not a little supported, which I think the Duke of Newcastle might find it in his interest to do.3
In fact he never stood again, retiring into private life with bitter feelings towards Wells, which he expressed in his will by the injunction that
I will on no account be buried at Wells or have any achievement at either the parish church or cathedral church in the said city.4
He died at Bath 3 May 1775.