AYLMER, Matthew (c.1658-1720), of Westcliffe, nr. Dover, Kent.
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Family and Education
b. c.1658, 2nd s. of Sir Christopher Aylmer, 1st Bt., of Balrath, co. Meath by Margaret, da. of Matthew Plunkett, 5th Baron Louth [I]. m. bef. 1694, Sarah, da. of Edward Ellis of London, 2s. 2da. cr.Lord Aylmer, Baron of Balrath [I], 1 May 1718.
Lt. R.N. 1678, capt. 1679, r.-adm. 1693, v.-adm. 1693, adm. of the fleet 1708, c.-in-c. 1709-11, 1714-18; commr. of the navy 1694-1702; gov. Deal castle 1701; gov. Greenwich and ranger of Greenwich Park 1714; ld. of Admiralty 1717-18; r.-adm. of Great Britain 1717-d. ; master of Greenwich Hospital for life 1718.
After a distinguished naval career Aylmer was brought into Parliament on the Admiralty interest. A strong Whig, he was appointed commander-in-chief of the fleet in 1709, but was superseded soon after the Tories came into power in 1710. Reinstated on George I’s accession, he was made a lord of the Admiralty in 1717 but retired in 1718, being succeeded on the Admiralty board by his son-in-law, Sir John Norris. He died 18 Aug. 1720. According to a contemporary he had
a very good head, indefatigable and designing; is very zealous for the liberties of the people; makes a good figure in the Parliament as well as the fleet; is handsome in his person.1
To which Swift added: ‘A virulent party man, born in Ireland’.2