HARVEY, Edward (1658-1736), of Coombe, Surr.

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



Mar. - July 1679
1705 - 1713
30 Mar. 1715 - 1722

Family and Education

b. 30 Mar. 1658, 1st s. of Sir Daniel Harvey†; bro. of Daniel Harvey*.  m. (1) 8 May 1679, his cos. Elizabeth (d. 1696), da. of Sir Eliab Harvey*, 3s. 8da.; (2) July 1702, Lady Elizabeth (d. 1724), da. of Francis Newport†, 1st Earl of Bradford, wid. of Sir Henry Lyttelton, 2nd Bt.†, of Hagley Hall, Worcs., and sis. of Hon. Richard Newport*, Ld. Newport and Hon. Thomas Newport*, s.p.; (3) 6 July 1725, Mary, da. and coh. of Edward Carteret*, s.psuc. fa. 1672, cos. Michael Harvey* 1712.1

Offices Held

High steward, Kingston-upon-Thames 1707–d.


Harvey, a cousin of the 2nd Earl of Nottingham (Daniel Finch†), inherited a fortune from his father, valued in 1701 at £79,000 and bringing in an annual income of £3,100, consisting of property in Kent, Surrey and Leicestershire. He also had the reversion, after his mother’s death, of land in Buckinghamshire and Oxford worth a further £740 p.a. Despite this, Harvey had, by July 1701, encountered financial difficulties, owing to his estates being encumbered with a debt of £10,000. These problems came to light in 1701 while he was negotiating his second marriage at the same time as trying to arrange a match for his eldest son, whom he needed to provide with an income of around £1,000 p.a. Fortunately, the matrimonial plans for his son fell through and with it the immediate need to sell off a large part of his estate. Harvey had sat in the first Parliament of 1679 as an Exclusionist but, despite standing for Surrey in 1695 and 1698, did not return to the Commons until 1705, when he was successful at Clitheroe on the interest of his uncle, the Whig Duke of Montagu (Ralph†). By now, however, Harvey had become an ardent Tory and Lord Sunderland (Charles, Lord Spencer*) counted his election as a ‘loss’ for the Whigs.2

Listed as a ‘Churchman’ in an analysis of the new Parliament, Harvey voted on 25 Oct. 1705 against the Court candidate for Speaker. However, further analysis of his parliamentary activity is hindered by the presence in the House throughout his parliamentary career of a number of namesakes, who shared his Tory loyalties. In early 1706 Harvey was convinced that Parliament was to be dissolved and therefore kept a careful watch on his interests at Clitheroe and in Surrey. In early 1708 an analysis of the Parliament classed him as a Tory. The only activity that can be attributed to him with any certainty is his petition, on 21 Feb. 1708, for leave for a bill to settle property in Leicestershire on his son’s widow, owing to his son’s death before the settlement relating to her jointure of £11,000 had been completed. Permission to introduce the bill was granted but no further action was taken. Harvey was successful at Clitheroe in 1708, and in 1710 voted against the impeachment of Dr Sacheverell. Classed as a Tory in the ‘Hanover list’ of 1710, he was included the following year among both the ‘Tory patriots’ who had opposed the continuation of the war and the ‘worthy patriots’ who in the 1710–11 session had detected the mismanagements of the previous administration. He also joined the October Club. Little more can be said of Harvey’s contribution to the 1710 Parliament, though on 18 June 1713 he voted against the French commerce bill. By this time a Jacobite, Harvey was defeated at Clitheroe in 1713, and though his petition led to his opponent being unseated, the House refused to issue a writ for a new election. He was successful at Clitheroe in 1715. Two years previously Harvey had started a treasonable correspondence with the French ambassador in London. In 1716 this correspondence led to his arrest for treason, and it was alleged that while in prison Harvey attempted to commit suicide. He remained in opposition in the 1715 Parliament, contributing financially to the Swedish Plot in 1717, but he left the Commons in 1722 and by 1733 had moved to France. He died at Dunkirk on 24 Oct. 1736. Harvey left his estates, after payment of his debts, to his third wife, specifically excluding his spendthrift son Michael†.3

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Authors: Paula Watson / Richard Harrison


  • 1. Misc. Gen. et Her. ser. 2, iii. 363.
  • 2. Devonshire mss at Chatsworth House, Finch–Halifax pprs. box 4 bdle. 9, Harvey to Nottingham, 19, 26 July 1701; box 5, bdle. 9, [Nottingham] to [Harvey], [21 July 1701]; Northants. RO, Isham mss 1590, John to Sir Justinian Isham, 4th Bt.*, 2 Aug. 1698.
  • 3. Bagot mss at Levens Hall, Harvey to James Grahme*, 6 Apr., 11 Sept. 1706; State Trials, xv. 904–30; HMC Stuart, ii. 227; Monod thesis, 520; PCC 221 Derby.