THISTLETHWAYTE, Robert (1755-1802), of Southwick Park, Hants.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1780 - 1790

Family and Education

b. 24 May 1755, 1st s. of Rev. Robert Thistlethwayte (yr. bro. of Alexander Thistlethwayte), of Broughton, Hants by Anne, da. of Peter Bathurst, M.P., of Clarendon Park, Wilts.  educ. Queen’s, Oxf. 1772.  m. 1 Jan. 1778 cos. Selina, da. and coh. of Sir Thomas Frederick, 3rd Bt., sis. of Elizabeth who m. Apr. 1778 John Morshead, 3s. 5da.  suc. fa. 1767; and uncle Alexander Thistlethwayte 1771.

Offices Held


Thistlethwayte was connected in Hampshire politics with the Duke of Chandos, who in 1776, when Sir Simeon Stuart was thought to be dying, offered to support him for the county. ‘As to what regards my becoming a Member of Parliament’, replied Thistlethwayte on 14 Dec.,1 ‘your Grace will permit me to say I am very much averse to it, and (if anyone can answer for himself) I verily believe I shall never repent of my present resolution.’ Nevertheless in 1780 he was returned for Hampshire unopposed. On 26 Feb. 1781 he made his first speech—for Burke’s economical reform bill;2 and he voted consistently against North’s Administration. He voted for Shelburne’s peace preliminaries, 18 Feb. 1783, against Fox’s East India bill, 27 Nov. 1783, but opposed Pitt. In 1784 he was again returned unopposed. He voted against Administration on the Irish commercial propositions, 13 May 1785, and the Duke of Richmond’s fortifications plan, 27 Feb. 1786, but by 1787 had come round to supporting Pitt: in the debate on the army estimates, 10 Dec. 1787, he ‘made a short speech complimentary to the minister for his late exertions’ in strengthening the army,3 and he spoke and voted for Pitt on the Regency.

He died 22 Oct. 1802.

Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: John Brooke


  • 1. Chandos mss, HL.
  • 2. Debrett, ii. 42.
  • 3. Stockdale, xiii. 84.