CLAVELL, Edward (1676-1738), of Smedmore, Dorset

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



24 Jan. 1709 - 1710

Family and Education

b. 19 Jan. 1676, 1st s. of Walter Clavell, merchant, of Bengal, India by his 2nd w. Martha, da. of Thomas Woodruff, merchant, of London.  educ. St. Paul’s 1686–93.  m. (1) Jane, da. and h. of Sir Edward Littleton, merchant, of London, pres. of Bengal, s.p.; (2) settlement 10 Nov. 1717, Elizabeth, da. of George Damer of Dorchester, Dorset and aunt of Joseph Damer†, 1st Earl of Dorchester, 4s. 4da.  suc. fa. 1678.

Offices Held

Sheriff, Dorset 1702–3.


Clavell was born in India, where his father, a younger son of an old Dorset family, had gone to make his fortune. Although Clavell’s father inherited the family seat of Smedmore in 1671, he showed no desire to leave India, where he remained till his death. The family later returned to England and Clavell was sent to school in London. He stood unsuccessfully for Corfe Castle in 1698, but is not known to have made another attempt to enter Parliament until the general election of 1708, when he was narrowly defeated because the Earl of Shaftesbury (Anthony Ashley*) gave his interest to George Churchill*, a Tory. But Clavell took the seat without a contest at a by-election the following year. He made little mark in Parliament, apart from voting for the impeachment of Dr Sacheverell in 1710, and stood down at the general election of that year. He was buried at Winfrith on 9 Sept. 1738.1

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. Hutchins, Dorset, i. 566–7.