ELIOT, Hon. William (1867-1845), of 58 Grosvenor Street, Mdx.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1820-1832, ed. D.R. Fisher, 2009
Available from Cambridge University Press



7 Jan. 1791 - 1802
1802 - 17 Nov. 1823

Family and Education

b. 1 Apr. 1767, 4th but 2nd surv. s. of Edward Eliot†, 1st Bar. Eliot, and Catherine, da. and h. of Edward Elliston of Gestingthorpe, Essex; bro. of Hon. Edward James Eliot† and Hon. John Eliot†. educ. Liskeard sch.; Pembroke, Camb. 1784. m. (1) 30 Nov. 1797, Lady Georgiana Augusta Leveson Gower (d. 24 Mar. 1806), da. of Granville Leveson Gower†, 1st mq. of Stafford, 1s. 3da. (2 d.v.p.); (2) 13 Feb. 1809, Letitia (d. 20 Jan. 1810), da. of Sir William Pierce Ashe A’Court†, 1st bt., of Heytesbury, Wilts., s.p.s.; (3) 7 Mar. 1812, Charlotte (d. 3 July 1813), da. of Lt.-Gen. John Robinson† of Denston Hall, Suff., s.p.; (4) 30 Aug. 1814, Susan, da. of Sir John Mordaunt†, 7th bt., of Walton, Warws., s.p. suc. bro. John Eliot† as 2nd earl of St. Germans 17 Nov. 1823. d. 19 Jan. 1845.

Offices Held

Sec. of legation, Berlin 1791-3, chargé d’affaires 1793; sec. of embassy, The Hague 1793-5 and minister plenip. ad. int. 1793-4; plenip. on spec. mission to Brunswick 1794; minister to Elector Palatine and Diet of Ratisbon 1796-8.

Ld. of admiralty July 1800-Jan. 1804; under-sec. of state for foreign affairs June 1804-Jan. 1805; ld. of treasury Mar. 1807-Jan. 1812.


Eliot, whose active days as a diplomat and junior minister were behind him, was again returned for the family borough of Liskeard in 1820. He was an occasional attender who continued to give silent support to Lord Liverpool’s ministry. He voted in defence of their conduct towards Queen Caroline, 6 Feb. 1821. He divided against Catholic relief, 28 Feb. He voted against repeal of the additional malt duty, 3 Apr., was in the minority for inquiry into the currency, 9 Apr., but voted for the duke of Clarence’s grant, 18 June. He divided against the disfranchisement of ordnance officials, 12 Apr., parliamentary reform, 9 May, and the forgery punishment mitigation bill, 21 May 1821. His last known vote was against more extensive tax reductions, 21 Feb. 1822. He was granted ten days’ leave to attend to private business, 18 Apr. 1822, and soon afterwards went to ‘reside a year or two on the continent’, leaving his affairs in the hands of his elder brother,1 whom he succeeded to the peerage by special remainder in November 1823.2 In the Lords, he supported the Wellington ministry’s Catholic emancipation bill in 1829. The death of his wife in 1830 made him a widower for the fourth time. He died in January 1845 and was succeeded by his only son, Edward Granville Eliot*, who achieved the political eminence which had eluded him.3

Ref Volumes: 1820-1832

Author: David R. Fisher


  • 1. Castlereagh Corresp. xii. 474-5.
  • 2. He inherited the Port Eliot estate in Cornwall, but the bulk of the personalty, which was sworn under £45,000, went to the 1st earl’s widow, the residuary legatee (PROB 11/1683/180; IR26/1017/230).
  • 3. Gent. Mag. (1845), i. 429, 667.