Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Sir Thomas Hanmer, 4th Baronet

Sir Thomas Hanmer, 4th Baronet (1677 - 1746), an MP and Speaker of the House of Commons from 1714-15.

Sir Thomas was the son of William Hanmer and Peregrina North, dau of Sir Henry North, 1st Bart of Mildenhall.
His grand-father was Sir Thomas Hanmer, 2nd Bart of Hanmer (d 1678) also a Royalist who had to live in exile in the Continent during the Civil War and Cromwell’s rule and later became an eminent horticulturist and writer. The latter’s elder son Major General Sir John Hanmer, like many of the English gentry, followed William of Orange and was Colonel of a Regiment that fought for King William III at the Battle of Boyne.
He married 1stly., 1698, Lady Isabella Bennet (1668 - 1722), countess of Arlington, dau. of Henry Bennet, KG (1618 – 1685), 1st earl of Arlington and widow of Henry, earl of Euston and 1st. duke of Grafton, the illegitimate son of Charles II; and 2ndly. Elizabeth Folkes, dau of Thomas Folkes of Barton (who later eloped with Sir Thomas’s cousin, Thomas Harvey (1699-1775), son of the 1st earl of Bristol).
Unlike his father-in-law Lord Arlington, who had been a prominent Royalist, courtier and statesman at the court of Charles II, Sir Thomas was distinguished himself as an Hanoverian Tory.

Sir Thomas succeeded his cousin Major General Sir John Hanmer, 3rd Bart of Hanmer, who died in 1701. Sit Thomas was an MP for the co. of Flint on the accession of Queen Anne and later in later in 1707 for the co. of Suffolk.
His sister Susanna Hanmer (d. 1744) was married to Sir Henry Bunbury, 3rd Bart of Stanney Hall, (d. 1732-3). Their second son Sir William Bunbury, 5th Bart (d. 1764) was to inherit Milden Hall in the co. of Suffolk. Lieut. General Sir Henry Edward Bunbury, 7th Bart (1778-1860), the latter’s grandson, who succeeded to the family title on the death of his paternal uncle, published in 1838 the correspondence of Sir Thomas Hanmer.
The Hanmer estates, on Sir Thomas death, were secured by his kinsman Thomas Hanmer of Fenns and his heirs.
He is known for promoting an illustrated edition of Shakespeare Works, in 6 volumes published at Oxford, in 1744. The illustrations were made by Francis Hayman and Hubert Gravelot and engraved by Gravelot.

F. 13622 - Early Armorial dated 1707
Arms: 16 quarters, 1st. and 16th: Argent, two lions passant, guardant, az. (Hanmer) with Bennet on an escutcheon.
Crest: On a chapeau, az., turned up, ermine, a lion guardant, sejant, argent.
Seats: Hanmer Hall and Bettisfield Park co. Flint

Short biography at
Bibliography: Sir Henry Bunbury, Bart. (ed.), The Correspondence of Sir Thomas Hanmer, Bart., Speaker of the House of Commons: With a Memoir of His Life. To which are Added, Other Relicks of a Gentleman's Family, E. Moxon, 1838
Debrett’s The baronetage of England. revised, corrected and continued by G.W. Collen, London, 1840

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