FONNEREAU, Zachary Philip (1706-78), of Sise Lane, Bucklersbury, London
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Family and Education
b. 31 Jan. 1706, 4th s. of Claude Fonnereau, and bro. of Thomas. m. 13 Apr. 1738, Margaret, da. and coh. of George Martyn of Odington, Glos., 10s. 3da.
Director, E. I. Co. 1753, 1754.
Fonnereau supported Administration, and together with his brother Thomas was a Government contractor. In January 1754 the candidature of the two sitting Members for Aldeburgh, Windham and Fonnereau, was approved by Pelham, and was subsequently taken over by Newcastle. When the case against Brice Fisher was brought before the directors of the East India Company, Fonnereau, together with Nicholas Linwood and Chauncey, took his side; after this the three dropped out from the directorate, though Fonnereau seems to have retained a certain standing in East India House.1
In Bute’s list of December 1761 he is marked ‘Newcastle, contra’. Together with Thomas he voted with Opposition on 1 Dec., but not on the 9th—it was he who was negotiating with Bute. On 17 Dec. Newcastle wrote to Thomas Walpole, Fonnereau’s partner in the Gibraltar contract:2
Yesterday morning I had a long conversation with Mr. Zachary Fonnereau, by which it appears, and by his own confession, that he is entirely gone over to my Lord Bute. The fact, as he states it, is this, that he acquainted Mr. [Samuel] Martin, that if my Lord Bute desired it, he was ready to be concerned in the loan for raising the money, this year, as he had been formerly; that voluntary offer on his part produced (as he certainly intended it should) some farther discourse with Mr. Martin; and ended in my good friend’s having some conference with my Lord Bute himself; in which Mr. Fonnereau gave his Lordship such assurances that Fonnereau himself apprehended that his voting with us, as he did one night, might be (as to be sure it was) inconsistent with the assurances which he had before given to my Lord Bute; and Mr. Fonnereau thought himself obliged to come to explain himself to my Lord Bute; and that, as I find, ended by Mr. Fonnereau’s engaging himself, his brother, and his son absolutely to my Lord Bute.
I talked very civilly but very strongly to him, of his behaviour to me, after the assurances he had given me. He owned very plainly that it was interest; that he had a family; his brother and he had spent thirty thousand pounds in elections; that he had got but little from my brother and me, and that he must look out to his interest. I suppose his price is some valuable remittances to Minorca etc.; when a man knows himself that he is bought, one has nothing to say to him.
I then supposed that if I should be personally attacked, I might there depend upon his assistance. He eventually said, yes, but with some sort of hesitation; which makes me believe they have endeavoured to secure him in that also. This is the man that was represented to me as a friend and as honest a man, as any in the city ...
I wish you would go as a friend and talk this matter over with Mr. Fonnereau, show him the figure he will make; and that possibly this may not finally turn out for his interest ... I believe it is Tom Fonnereau, who has done this with his brother.
Zachary Fonnereau’s politics continued to coincide with those of his brother: he supported Administration whoever it was that held office. So also in the Parliament of 1768-74, from which Thomas was absent, Zachary’s name appears in the extant division lists steadily on the Government side. He did not stand again in 1774. There is no record of his having ever spoken in the House during the 27 years he sat in it.
He died 15 Aug. 1778.