FLEMING, Sir Michael le, 4th Bt. (1748-1806), of Rydal, Westmld.
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Family and Education
b. 10 Dec. 1748, o.s. of Sir William Fleming, 3rd Bt.. educ. Eton 1760-5. m. 23 Nov. 1782, Lady Diana Howard, da. of Thomas, 14th Earl of Suffolk and 7th Earl of Berkshire, 1da. suc. fa. 31 Mar. 1757.
Fleming (the ‘le’ was added at his baptism) was a ward of Sir James Lowther, and in 1774 contested Westmorland jointly with him. On 17 Dec. 1774 Fleming wrote to a friend:1‘What is to be done to our good subjects on the other side of the Atlantic I cannot say, but I think it should not be made a party matter of, as the crisis is at hand which must determine whether we are to have colonies or not.’ Like Sir James, he voted regularly with Opposition till the fall of North; supported Shelburne’s peace preliminaries, 18 Feb. 1783, and voted against Fox’s East India bill, 27 Nov. 1783. Fleming voted for both Pitt’s parliamentary reform bills, 7 May 1783 and 18 Apr. 1785, and at first supported his Administration, but like the other Lowther Members, voted with Opposition on the Regency, 1788-9.
Only one speech by Fleming is reported before 1790—against a proposal to suppress hawkers and pedlars, 9 June 1785.2
Fleming was described by his friend James Boswell as ‘a very fashionable baronet in the brilliant world’, who had a great love of literature.3 He died 19 May 1806.