Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip

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Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip

Birthdate: (88)
Death: February 2, 1802 (88)
Place of Burial: London, England
Immediate Family:

Son of Welbore Ellis, Bishop of Kildare and Meath and Diana Ellis
Husband of Elizabeth Ellis and Anne Ellis
Brother of Anne Agar

Managed by: Woodman Mark Lowes Dickinson, OBE
Last Updated:

About Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip

Family and Education b. 15 Dec. 1713, o. surv. s. of Rt. Rev. Welbore Ellis, bp. of Kildare and (1731) Meath, by Diana, da. of Sir John Briscoe of Boughton, Northants. and Amberley, Suss. educ. Westminster 1727-32; Ch. Ch. Oxf. 1732. m. (1) 18 Nov. 1747, Elizabeth (d. 1 Aug. 1761), da. and h. of Sir William Stanhope, s.p.; (2) 20 July 1765, Anne, da. of George Stanley of Paultons, Hants, sis. and coh. of Hans Stanley, s.p. suc. fa. 1734; cr. Baron Mendip 13 Aug. 1794.

Offices Held

Ld. of Admiralty 1747-55; jt. vice-treasurer [I] 1755-62; P.C. 20 Mar. 1760; sec. at war 1762-5; jt. vice-treasurer [I] 1770-7; treasurer of the navy 1777-82; sec. of state for America Feb.-Mar. 1782.

Biography In 1738 Welbore Ellis, aged 24, inherited a great fortune from his uncle, John Ellis, M.P., under-secretary of state to William III and Anne, who had acquired by Act of Parliament the forfeited Irish estates of his own brother, Sir William Ellis, secretary of state to James II in exile.1 Entering Parliament for the venal borough of Cricklade after a double return in 1741, he was included, May 1742, in Pelham’s list for a proposed public accounts commission, to which he was not elected.2 In the Cockpit list of ministerial supporters, October 1742, he is put down as receiving the whip through his friend Henry Fox. Voting regularly with the Government, he spoke against an opposition motion for discontinuing the Hanoverian troops in British pay, 6 Dec. 1743, seconded the Address at the opening of the sessions of 1744 and 1745, supported the Hanoverians, 11 Apr. 1746, and spoke second for the Administration on the heritable jurisdictions bill, 14 Apr. 1747.3 He was returned for Weymouth and Melcombe Regis on Pelham’s recommendation in 1747, when the Duke of Bedford, then first lord of the Admiralty, agreed to his succeeding George Grenville at that board.4 He held office for over 30 years, a record rivalling that of his colleague, the 2nd Lord Barrington, to whom Horace Walpole compares him:

They were shades of the same character; the former [Barrington] a little brighter by better parts, the other a little more amiable by less interestedness.5 He died 2 Feb. 1802.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754 Author: Romney R. Sedgwick Notes 1. PCC 173 Brodrepp; HMC Egmont Diary, iii. 350. 2. Horace Walpole to Mann, 26 May 1742. 3. Add. 35876, f. 250. 4. Hartington to Devonshire, 16 June 1747, Devonshire mss. 5. Mems. Geo. II, ii. 141-2

Wikipedia Biographical Summary

Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip PC FRS (15 December 1713 – 2 February 1802) was a British statesman. He held a number of political offices, including briefly serving as Secretary for the Colonies in 1782 during the American War of Independence.


Ellis was the second but only surviving son of the Most Reverend Welbore Ellis, Bishop of Kildare and Bishop of Meath.

Political career

In 1741, he was elected Member of Parliament (MP) for Cricklade, then moved to Weymouth and Melcombe Regis (1747–1761), Aylesbury (1761–1768), Petersfield (1768–1774), Weymouth and Melcombe Regis (1774–1790) and Petersfield (1791–1794). In 1762, he succeeded Charles Townshend as Secretary at War, and in 1763, he proposed the appropriation of twenty army regiments to the colonies of America. In Parliament, with many others, he opposed the reception of papers from the American Continental Congress. He became Treasurer of the Navy on 1777, then succeeded to the Colonial Secretaryship in 1782, which he held for a matter of months, before the American colonies were lost. In 1784, he became the longest-serving member of the House of Commons (having served for 34 years noncontinuously), becoming the honorary Father of the House. He was created Baron Mendip, of Mendip in the County of Somerset, in 1794 in recognition of his governmental service. The peerage was created with remainder to the three eldest sons of his sister Anne by her husband Henry Agar, of Gowran.

Personal life

Ellis died childless in February 1802, aged 88, and was succeeded in the barony according to the special remainder by his great-nephew, Henry Welbore Agar, 2nd Viscount Clifden, who assumed the surname of Ellis two years later.

SOURCE: Wikipedia contributors, 'Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 16 November 2013, 19:11 UTC, <http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Welbore_Ellis,_1st_Baron_Mendip&oldid=581948372> [accessed 28 December 2013]

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Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip's Timeline

December 15, 1713
February 2, 1802
Age 88
February 7, 1802
Age 88
London, England