TAIT, William (d.1800), of Edinburgh.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



3 May 1797 - 7 Jan. 1800

Family and Education

2nd s. of Alexander Tait, WS, principal clerk of session and of processes by Janet, da. of William Blair of Blair, Ayr. educ. ?Edinburgh Univ.; L. Inn 1777; adv. 1780. unm. suc. fa. 1781.

Offices Held

Advocate depute 1787-90; sheriff depute, Stirling and Clackmannan 1790.


Tait, an advocate who acted as confidential agent to Henry Dundas, was chosen by the latter as candidate for the Stirling burghs on a vacancy in 1797, taking them by surprise. In Parliament, where he took his seat on 17 July 1797, he supported Pitt’s administration, voting with them on the assessed taxes, 4 Jan. 1798. No speech is known. He died at Exeter in pursuit of better health, 7 Jan. 1800. Brougham thought him ‘one of the most accomplished lawyers of his time’.

Senators (ser. 1), viii. 171; Gent. Mag. (1800), i. 89; Brougham, Life and Times, i. 232.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: R. G. Thorne