PROWSE, John (1676-1710), of Axbridge, Som.

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



1708 - 4 Apr. 1710

Family and Education

bap. 11 Mar. 1676, 2nd but 1st surv. s. of John Prowse of Compton House, Axbridge and Compton Bishop, Som. by his 2nd w. Ann (d. 1740), da. and coh. of Roger Newborough of Berkley, Som.  educ. Trinity, Oxf. 1694.  m. (1) Margaret (d. 1702), da. of William Bragge† of Sadborow, Dorset, 1da. d.v.p.; (2) aft. 1702, Abigail (d. 1763), da. of George Hooper, bp. of Bath and Wells, 1s.  suc. fa. 1688.1

Offices Held


Prowse’s family were originally minor gentry in Devon. His father moved to Somerset on inheriting Axbridge and Compton Bishop in 1670 from his cousin once removed, William Prowse. Prowse himself was a major in the militia by 1697 and colonel of the Bath regiment by the time of his death. His candidature in the Somerset election in 1708 was actively supported by his father-in-law, Dr George Hooper, bishop of Bath and Wells, a positive advantage in securing the approbation of Tory gentlemen, and he was returned unopposed. His election was classed as a ‘loss’ for the Whigs by Lord Sunderland (Charles, Lord Spencer*), and in 1710 he voted against the impeachment of Dr Sacheverell. Shortly afterwards, however, he fell ill with smallpox and died at Westminster on 4 Apr. He was buried at Axbridge. His only son, Thomas, was Member for Somerset from 1740 until his death in 1767.2

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. Misc. Gen. et Her. n.s. iii. 162–3, 166–8.
  • 2. Ibid. 166–8; Egerton 1626, ff. 39–40; Collinson, Som. iii. 583.