Wallop, John (1690-1762) (DNB00)


WALLOP, JOHN, first Earl of Portsmouth (1690–1762), born in 1690, was the third son of John Wallop of Farleigh-Wallop, Hampshire, by his wife Alicia, daughter and coheiress of William Borlase of Great Marlow, Buckinghamshire. Robert Wallop [q. v.] was his great-grandfather. John left Eton in his nineteenth year to complete his education by continental travel. While on his way to Geneva he served as a volunteer at the battle of Oudenarde. Subsequently, having passed a year of ‘academical exercitations’ at Geneva, and another in ‘visitation of the most eminent personages, and reconnoitring the most celebrated curiosities of Italy,’ he proceeded to Germany. At Hanover he was ‘admitted to the most confidential familiarity’ with the elector (afterwards George I). Meanwhile he had succeeded, in October 1707, to the family estates on the death of his elder brother. On his return to England he was elected M.P. for Hampshire, which he represented from 1715 to 1720. On 13 April 1717 he was named a lord of the treasury ‘by the particular nomination’ of George I. Three years later, on 11 June 1720, he was created Baron Wallop and Viscount Lymington. He took no prominent part in public affairs, but, judging from the dates of the appointments he subsequently received, must have been a supporter of Walpole. These included the chief-justiceship in eyre of the royal forests north of the Trent (5 Dec. 1732), the lord-lieutenancy of Hampshire (7 Aug. 1733), the lord-wardenship of the New Forest (2 Nov. 1733), and the governorship of the Isle of Wight (18 June 1734). All these terminated in 1742. But on 11 April 1743 Wallop was advanced to the earldom of Portsmouth, and in February 1746 was re-named governor of the Isle of Wight. He was created D.C.L. of Oxford on 1 Oct. 1755, and had been a governor of the Foundling Hospital since 1739. He died on 23 Nov. 1762. In the church of Farleigh-Wallop, on the south wall, is a marble monument to him with a lengthy inscription, which has been quoted. Portsmouth was twice married: first, in May 1716, to Bridget, eldest daughter of Charles Bennet, first earl of Tankerville; secondly, in June 1741, to Elizabeth, daughter of James, second lord Griffin, and widow of Henry Grey, by whom he had no issue.

By his first wife he had John, viscount Lymington (1718–1749), who was M.P. for Andover from 1741 till his death, and married Catherine, daughter and heir of John Conduitt [q. v.], Sir Isaac Newton's successor as master of the mint. She was Newton's niece and coheiress, and his papers and scientific collections came into the possession of her eldest son, John Wallop (1742–1797), who was, in succession to his grandfather, second Earl of Portsmouth. [Collectanea Topographica et Genealogica, viii. 380–7; Doyle's Official Baronage; G. E. C[okayne]'s and Burke's Peerages; Gent. Mag. 1762 p. 553, 1854 i. 190–1; Martin Doyle's Notes relating to the County of Wexford, pp. 117–18; Brayley and Britton's Beauties of England, vi. 234; Hist. MSS. Comm. 8th Rep. App. 60–92.]

G. Le G. N.