MORICE, Sir Nicholas, 2nd Bt. (1681-1726), of Werrington, Devon.
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Family and Education
b. 1681, 1st surv. s. of Sir William Morice, 1st Bt., M.P., of Werrington by his 2nd w. Elizabeth, da. of Richard Reynell of Ogwell Devon. educ. Exeter, Oxf. 1698. m. (lic. 21 Mar. 1704) Lady Catherine Herbert, da. of Thomas Herbert, M.P., 8th Earl of Pembroke, 1s. 2da. suc. fa. as 2nd Bt. 7 Feb. 1690.
Sir Nicholas Morice was the grandson of Sir William Morice, secretary of state under Charles II, who purchased in 1651 the estate of Werrington, carrying with it an important interest in the neighbouring Cornish boroughs of Newport and Launceston. As a Tory and a member of the October Club, he consistently opposed the Administration under George I. Though complaining of being ‘recalled to ride four hundred miles to be baffled and laughed at, for ... it has been evident that this Parliament never denied the Court any one individual thing they have asked’, he came up from Cornwall to vote against that ‘godly bill to root out the best established church in the world’, as he sarcastically called the bill for repealing the Occasional Conformity and Schism Acts; but next year he was committed to the custody of the serjeant at arms for defaulting on the call of the House for the peerage bill. He strongly disapproved of Walpole, refusing, in his own words, ‘to stoop and submit, cap in hand, to a man whom I fear not and value much less, and who in every respect since [sic] this King’s reign was my inferior’.1 His name was included in a list of Jacobite supporters sent to the Pretender in 1721.2 He died 27 Jan. 1726.