EYLES, John (c.1683-1745), of London
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Family and Education
b. c.1683, 2nd but 1st surv. s. of Sir Francis Eyles, 1st Bt., Haberdasher, of London by Elizabeth, prob. da. of Richard Alie, Draper, of London; nephew of (Sir) John Eyles†; bro. of Joseph Eyles†. m. by 1708, his cos. Mary (d. 1735), da. of Joseph Haskins Stiles*, 2s. (1 d.v.p.) 2da. (1 d.v.p.). suc. fa. as 2nd Bt. 24 May 1716.1
Dir. E.I. Co. 1710–14, 1717–21, Bank of Eng. 1715–17; freeman, Levant Co. by 1718; sub-gov. S. Sea Co. Jan. 1721–33; pres. St. Thomas’ Hosp. 1737–d.2
Common councilman, London 1715–16, alderman 1716–d., sheriff 1719–20, ld. mayor 1726–7; master, Haberdashers’ Co. 1716–17; steward, crown manor of Havering atte Bower, Essex by 1737.3
Commr. forfeited estates 1716–25; jt. post master-gen. 1739–d.
Eyles’s father was the son of a Wiltshire mercer and woolstapler, but like his brother John† (originally a Dissenter) he made his fortune in London and rose to be an alderman of the City, becoming a director and governor of the Bank of England and finally, in 1714, a baronet. Sir Francis Eyles was one of the four Bank directors who in 1710, after the dismissal of Lord Sunderland (Charles, Lord Spencer*), made representations to the Queen of the dangers further ministerial alterations would hold for public credit. His son ‘Jack’ was entered early into business: in 1698, at only 15, he was able to subscribe £2,000 himself to the Old East India Company’s advance loan. By 1710 he had become a director of the united company. Chosen again in the directorial elections of the following year, when he was a candidate on the Whig slate, he was returned to Parliament in 1713 at Chippenham, not far from the Eyles family estates in Wiltshire. A petition from the defeated Tory candidate was subsequently dropped. Eyles voted on 18 Mar. 1714 against the expulsion of Richard Steele*, and was a teller on 25 June in favour of adjourning the hearing of the Southwark election. He was also active from about this time in the Hanover Club in London, which organized the Whig effort at common council elections and in the elections to the major City committees. He was classed as a Whig in the Worsley list and in two comparative analyses of the 1713 and 1715 Parliaments. Eyles died on 11 Mar. 1745 and was buried in the family vault in St. Helen’s, Bishopsgate.4
Ref Volumes: 1690-1715
Author: D. W. Hayton
- 1. Wright, Essex, ii. 440; London Vis. Peds. (Harl. Soc. xcii), 3; St. Helen’s Bishopsgate (Harl. Soc. Reg. xxxi), 351, 355, 372; Beaven, Aldermen, i. 68, 123.
- 2. A. C. Wood, Levant Co. 137; J. Carswell, S. Sea Bubble, 231–2.
- 3. Cal. Treas. Bks. and Pprs. 1735–8, p. 386.
- 4. HMC Portland, iv. 545; Luttrell, Brief Relation, vi. 594; Letters of Burnet to Duckett ed. Nichol Smith, 50; Boyer, Pol. State, i–ii. 263; London Politics 1713–17 (London Rec. Soc xvii), 11–44; St. Helen’s Bishopsgate 378.