BATHURST, Benjamin (1692-1767), of Lydney, Glos. and Mixbury, Glos.
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Family and Education
bap. 25 June 1692, 5th but 3rd surv. s. of Sir Benjamin Bathurst*; bro. of Allen* and Peter Bathurst*. educ. Eton 1699; Trinity, Oxf. 1708. m. (1) 17 Dec. 1713, Finetta (d. 1738), da. of Henry Poole of Kemble, Glos., 22ch.; (2) 22 Oct. 1741, Catherine (d. 1794), da. of Rev. Lawrence Brodrick, chaplain to the House of Commons and preb. Westminster, wid. of Dr William Whitfield, 14ch.1
Outranger, Windsor Forest 1763–d.2
By virtue of his father’s position in the household of Princess Anne, Bathurst and his brother Peter were childhood companions to the princess’s son, the Duke of Gloucester, and in 1697 Benjamin was included in a portrait of the Duke. Upon his father’s death in 1704 he inherited the manors of Lydney, Gloucestershire and Mixbury, Oxfordshire. At the general election of 1713, just after coming of age, he was returned for the family seat at Cirencester. While he left no mark whatsoever on the recorded proceedings of the House, his early political behaviour and outlook appear to have foxed parliamentary analysts. Despite his family’s strong Tory credentials, he was classed in the Worsley list of the 1713 Parliament as a Whig who would often vote with the Tories. He voted with the Whigs on 18 Mar. 1714 against the expulsion of Richard Steele, and was marked as a Whig in two other lists of this Parliament drawn up in 1715, but his Tory identity thereafter is confirmed by an analysis of the House compiled by Francis Gwyn* in 1723. The impression gained is that as a ‘whimsical Tory’ Bathurst may have acted with the Whigs more frequently than most of his brethren. He remained an MP for the rest of his life, dying on 5 Nov. 1767.3