JOLIFFE, William (c.1622-1712), of London and Caverswall Castle, Staffs.

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



1698 - 1705

Family and Education

b. c.1622, 3rd but 2nd surv. s. of William Joliffe of Botham Hall, Cheddleton, Staffs. by Anne, da. of Benedict Webb of Kingswood, Glos.  m. (1) 1659, Martha (d. 1667), da. of Thomas Foley† of Witley Court, Worcs., sis. of Paul I*, Philip* and Thomas Foley I*, 1da.; (2) Lady Mary (d. 1678), da. of Fernando Hastings, 6th Earl of Huntingdon, 1da.; (3) lic. 28 Oct. 1686, Elizabeth (d. 1694), da. of Thomas Trenchard† of Wolveton, Dorset, wid. of John Every† of Wootton Glanville, Dorset, sis. of Sir John Trenchard*, s.psuc. fa. to Caverswall Castle 1669.1

Offices Held

Freeman, Mercers’ Co. by 1659; alderman of London 1687–3 Oct. 1688; sheriff, Staffs. 14–21 Dec. 1691, 1692–3.2

Asst. Levant Co. 1698–9; director, New E. I. Co. 1700–1.3


Joliffe’s family had been mercers in Leek, Staffordshire since the mid-15th century and his father, who had held office during the Interregnum, added considerably to their estates by the acquisition of Botham Hall and Caverswall Castle. Joliffe himself continued the family tradition, going into trade in London, where his uncle, John Joliffe, was already established. His growing prosperity was augmented by three fortunate marriages into prominent families. Although on his father’s death he inherited Caverswall Castle, he remained active in the city of London and was appointed alderman by royal commission in 1687. The appointment was superseded by the restoration of the charter in October 1688.4

In October 1695 Joliffe was reported to have made ‘great returns by these ships from Turkey’, and was suggested as a possible candidate for Poole on the Trenchard interest. In 1698 he stood at Poole and was returned after a contest. In a list drawn up about September he was classed as a Country party supporter, but he was not an active Member. Following his return at the second 1701 election, Robert Harley* was sufficiently uncertain of his political views to class him as doubtful. At the beginning of the 1704–5 session he was listed as a probable opponent of the Tack, and he did not vote for it on 28 Nov. 1704. He retired from politics and trade at the end of this Parliament. In 1707 he was appointed a j.p. for Surrey by Lord Keeper Cowper (William*). In the 1710 election in London he voted for the Whig candidates. In May 1711 Joliffe’s name was included on the Tory slate for election as a director of the East India Company, though he was not chosen on this occasion, and appears to have died soon afterwards. He was buried at Caverswall on 19 Jan. 1712. Most of his Staffordshire and Cheshire property went to his daughter, Lucy, who had married William Vane*. His elder daughter, Anne, married Philip Papillon*.5

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. J. R. Woodhead, Rulers of London (London and Mdx. Arch. Soc.), 99–100; H. G. H. Jolliffe, Jolliffes of Staffs. 4–17.
  • 2. Woodhead, 99.
  • 3. Ibid, 100.
  • 4. Jolliffe, 1–17; Acts and Ords. i. 974, 1091; ii. 476, 673, 1078.
  • 5. Add. 70018, f. 69; Herts. RO, Panshanger mss, D/EP F152, list of j.p.s put in or put out by Ld. Cowper, [1707]; London Poll 1710 (IHR), 120; Boyer, Pol. State, i–ii. 263; Beaven, Aldermen, i. 213.