COURTENAY, George (1666-1725), of Ford, Devon

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



4 Feb. - 2 July 1702
1708 - 1710
1710 - 1713

Family and Education

bap. 13 May 1666, 7th but 4th surv. s. of Sir William Courtenay, 1st Bt.†; bro. of Francis* and Richard Courtenay†.  educ. M. Temple 1684. unm.1

Offices Held

Ensign, 1 Ft. Gds. 1689; commr. victualling 1711–14.

V.-adm. Devon and Exeter 1689–d.2


Courtenay joined the Prince of Orange at Exeter in November 1688, and was rewarded ‘in consideration of Sir William Courtenay’s deserts’ with appointment as vice-admiral of Devon and Exeter in May 1689. In this capacity he raised 1,300 men annually in the period 1692–6, receiving £650 on each occasion. On his mother’s death in January 1694 he inherited Ford, which had belonged to his maternal great-grandfather Sir Richard Reynell. A Tory, Courtenay was returned for East Looe at a by-election in 1702, presumably by his kinsman Bishop Trelawny. He voted on 26 Feb. for the resolution vindicating the Commons over the impeachment proceedings against the King’s Whig ministers in the previous session. Representing Totnes in the 1708 Parliament, he told on 28 Feb. 1709 in favour of a clause to be added to the general naturalization bill, to retain the provisions of a Jacobean statute requiring that all persons naturalized should take the sacrament and oaths of allegiance and supremacy. In 1710 he voted against the impeachment of Dr Sacheverell. Although defeated at Ashburton in the general election of that year, Courtenay was brought in for Newport by Sir Nicholas Morice, 2nd Bt.* Marked as a Tory in the ‘Hanover list’, he was one of the ‘worthy patriots’ who detected the mismanagements of the previous administration. A member of the October Club, he was given a place in the victualling office in 1711, but did not stand in 1713. He was removed from office on the accession of George I, and had died before May 1725, when his will was proved.3

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Vivian, Vis. Devon, 248.
  • 2. SP 44/165/285.
  • 3. HMC 7th Rep. 416; CSP Dom. 1689–90, p. 122; Cal. Treas. Bks. ix. 1553; x. 46, 901, 1290; Brit. Mercury, 7–9 Nov. 1711; PCC 108 Romney.