Open main menu

Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 42.djvu/156

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
Oliver
Oliver
150

and was committed to the Tower by order of the speaker on the 20th of that month (ib. xvii. 155). On 6 April he was brought up on a writ of habeas corpus before Lord Mansfield, who declined to interfere, as parliament was still sitting. A similar application was made on his behalf to the court of exchequer on 30 April, with the same want of success. The parliamentary session, however, closed on 8 May, when Oliver and Crosby were released from the Tower, and conducted in a triumphal procession to the Mansion House. Though formerly an active supporter of Wilkes, Oliver refused to serve as sheriff with him in 1771 (Gent. Mag. 1771, p. 189), and was elected to that office with Watkin Lewes on 1 July 1772. The friends of Wilkes were so enraged at the election of Townshend as lord mayor in this year that they appear to have accused Oliver ' of having taken the vote of the court before their party had arrived ' (Fitzmaurice, Life of William, Earl of Sherburne, 18751876, ii. 289). On 26 Jan. 1773 Oliver spoke in favour of Sawbridge's motion for leave to bring in a bill for shortening the duration of parliaments (Parl. Hist. xvii. 692-5), and on 1 Feb. 1775 he seconded a similar motion (ib. xviii. 216). On 27 Nov. 1775 his proposed address to the king respecting 'the original authors and advisers' of the measures against the American colonies was defeated by 163 votes to 10 (ib. xviii. 1005-7, 1021). His name appears for the last time in the 'Parliamentary History' on 10 May 1776, when he seconded Sawbridge's resolution that the American colonies should 'be continued upon the same footing of giving and granting their money^ as his Majesty's subjects in Ireland are, by their own representatives' (ib. xviii. 1353). Oliver resigned his gown at a court of aldermen held at Guildhall on 25 Nov. 1778, and shortly afterwards sailed to Antigua in order to look after his West Indian estates. He died on board the Sandwich packet, while returning to England, on 16 April 1784.

Oliver married, on 2 Feb. 1758, his cousin Mary, daughter of Richard Oliver of Low Leyton, Essex, by whom he had no issue. He was elected a general of the honourable artillery company in August 1773. The silver-gilt cup which was presented to him by the livery in March 1772 ' for joining with other magistrates in the release of a freeman, who was arrested by order of the House of Commons, and in a warrant for | imprisoning the messenger who had arrested the citizen and refused to give hail,' is preserved among the corporation plate at the Mansion House. His portrait, which was painted in the Tower by R. Pine in 1772, has been engraved.

[Walpole's Memoirs of the Reign of George III, 1845, iv. 211, 291, 299-301, 307, 316-17,327-8; Chatham's Correspondence, 1838-40, iv. 121, 125-7, 129-34,138-40, 187; Woodfall's Junius, 1814, ii. 205-22, iii. 345 et seq.; Memoir of Brass Crosby, 1829; Trevelyan's Early History of C. J. Fox, 1881, pp. 339-55, 362-77; Beloe's Sexagenarian, 1818, ii. 23, 25-6; Oldmixon's British Empire in America, 1741, ii. 205, 215; Highmore's History of the Artillery Company, 1804, pp. 291-8, 303, 312; Orridge's Some Account of the Citizens of London and their Rulers, 1867, pp. 97-101, 249; Gent. Mag. 1758 p. 94, 1770 pp. 339-40. 341, 1771 pp. 139-41, 188, 233, 234, 284, 330, 1772 pp. 294, 338, 489, 492, 1776 pp. 147-8, 1778 pp. 434-5, 549, 605, 1784, pt. i. p. 395; Notes and Queries, 8th ser. iv. 67, 217; Official Return of Lists of Members of Parliament, pt. ii. pp. 140, 153.]

G. F. R. B.

OLIVER, ROBERT DUDLEY (1766–1850), admiral, was born on 31 Oct. 1766. He entered the navy in May 1779, on board the Prince George, carrying the flag of Rear-admiral Robert Digby [q. v.], and in her, during the early months of 1780, was shipmate of Prince William, afterwards William IV. Remaining in the Prince George, Oliver went in her to North America in 1781, and later on to the West Indies, where he was present in the operations before St. Kitts in January 1782 [see Hood, Samuel, Viscount] and at the defeat of the French fleet off Dominica on 12 April [see Rodney, George Bridges, Lord]. After further service in North America and in the Channel, he was in 1793 lieutenant of the Active in the North Sea; in 1794 in the Artois with Captain Edmund Nagle [q. v.], and after the capture of the Revolutionnaire on 21 Oct. he was promoted to be commander, taking seniority from the date of the action. In 1795 he commanded the Hazard sloop on the coast of Ireland, and on 30 April 1796 was posted to the Nonsuch, guardship in the Huinber, which he commanded till February 1798, when he was appointed to the Nemesis going out to Quebec with a large convoy. In March 1799 he joined the Mermaid, in which he went to the Mediterranean, and after an active and successful commission brought home Lord Hutchinson from Egypt in July 1802. On the renewal of the war he was appointed in March 1803 to the Melpomene, which during the next two years was actively employed on the coast of France. In September 1805 she was in dock at Portsmouth, and Oliver, calling on Lord Nelson, then on the point of sailing to resume the