LOWTHER, William (1757-1844), of Uffington, Lincs.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1780 - 1784
1784 - 1790
1796 - 24 May 1802

Family and Education

b. 29 Dec. 1757, 1st s. of Rev. Sir William Lowther, 1st Bt., and bro. of John Lowther.  educ. Westminster 1771; Trinity, Camb. 1776.  m. 12 July 1781, Lady Augusta Fane, da. of John, 9th Earl of Westmorland, 2s. 4da.  suc. fa. as 2nd Bt. 15 June 1788; on d. of his cos. James, 1st Earl of Lonsdale, to visctcy. and barony of Lowther of Whitehaven and to Lowther estates in Cumb. and Westmld. 24 May 1802; cr. Earl of Lonsdale 7 Apr. 1807; K.G. 18 July 1807.

Offices Held

Ld. lt. Cumb. and Westmld. 1802- d.


William Lowther, like the rest of the Lowther Members, followed the politics of his cousin, Sir James Lowther, 5th Bt., but he seems to have shown a tendency towards independence. On 26 Nov. 1781 Sir James ordered him to attend Parliament ‘constantly’ or to resign, and on 26 Jan. 1782 wrote: ‘I cannot help saying what I should not have done had not your behaviour urged it, that for your parliamentary conduct you are accountable to me.’ He concluded his letter with a demand that Lowther should join his militia battalion for an unspecified time. Lowther replied, 27 Jan.: ‘It was my earnest wish to remove the cause of your displeasure ... [but] as it is impossible for me to make concessions when I know not the fault I have committed, I fear you will still be averse to a reconciliation.’ And he offered to resign rather than join the militia out of turn. He explained to his father, 29 Jan. 1782:

From the treatment I have received for these last two months, I have no reason to believe that he ever intended me any kindness but that, as from certain circumstances, I might be of use to him, a temporary reconciliation would most likely take place, till the business was concluded, and after a long tiresome attendance I should most probably find myself in the same disgrace I am at present ... The duty I owe my country when she requires it, is first due to her—but Sir James forgets that I have now concerns of my own, and in my sphere of life, inattention to my wife, my family, and my own affair