John Lowther, 1st Viscount Lonsdale

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The 1st Viscount Lonsdale.

John Lowther, 1st Viscount Lonsdale, PC, FRS (25 April 1655 – 10 July 1700[1]), known as Sir John Lowther, 2nd Baronet, from 1675 to 1696, was an English politician.

He was born at Hackthorpe Hall, Lowther, Westmorland, the son of Colonel John Lowther of Lowther and his wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Henry Bellingham, Bart, of Hilsington, Westmoreland. He was educated at Kendal Grammar School and Sedbergh School before admission to Queen's College, Oxford (matriculated 1670). He was admitted to the Inner Temple in 1671 and called to the Bar in 1677.[2]

On 3 December 1674, he married Lady Katherine Thynne (d. bef. 1713), daughter of Sir Henry Frederick Thynne, 1st Baronet. They had children:

Prior to his creation as a viscount in 1696 John had succeeded his grandfather, another Sir John Lowther (1605–1675), as a baronet, and was twice member of parliament for Westmorland between 1677 and 1696. In 1688 he was serviceable in securing Cumberland and Westmorland for King William III, and was appointed to the Privy Council in 1689. In 1690 he was first lord of the treasury, and he was Lord Privy Seal from March 1699 until his death. He was badly injured in a duel in 1691.

On 20 December 1699, he was admitted a Fellow of the Royal Society.His candidacy citation noted that he was "A Gentleman who is well acquainted with many of the works of Nature and Art, & who hath lately obliged the Society with Some Curious Experiments relating to the damps of Coal Mines",[3]

He died at Lowther in 1700 and was buried in Lowther churchyard.

Lonsdale wrote Memoirs of the Reign of James II, which were printed in 1808 and again in 1857. His family became extinct when his son Henry, the 3rd viscount (1694–1751), died unmarried in March 1751.

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Parliament of England
Preceded by
Sir Philip Musgrave
Sir Thomas Strickland
Member of Parliament for Westmorland
1677–1679
With: Sir Philip Musgrave 1677–1678
Alan Bellingham 1678–1679
Succeeded by
Alan Bellingham
Christopher Philipson
Preceded by
Alan Bellingham
Christopher Philipson
Member of Parliament for Westmorland
1681–1696
With: Alan Bellingham 1681–1689
Henry Wharton 1689
Goodwin Wharton 1689–1690
Sir Christopher Musgrave 1690–1695
Sir Richard Sandford 1695–1696
Succeeded by
Sir Richard Sandford
William Fleming
Political offices
Preceded by
James Porter
Vice-Chamberlain of the Household
1689–1694
Succeeded by
Peregrine Bertie
Preceded by
The Earl of Monmouth
First Lord of the Treasury
1690
Succeeded by
The Lord Godolphin
Preceded by
The Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery
Lord Privy Seal
1699–1700
Succeeded by
The Earl of Tankerville
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Sir Philip Musgrave, Bt
Custos Rotulorum of Westmorland
1678–1700
Succeeded by
The Lord Wharton
Preceded by
The Earl of Carlisle
Vice-Admiral of Cumberland and Westmorland
1686–1700
Vacant
Title next held by
Sir Richard Musgrave, Bt
Preceded by
The Viscount Preston
Lord Lieutenant of Cumberland and Westmorland
1689–1694
Succeeded by
The Earl of Carlisle
Preceded by
The Earl of Thanet
Custos Rotulorum of Cumberland
1689–1700
Peerage of England
New creation Viscount Lonsdale
1696–1700
Succeeded by
Richard Lowther
Baronetage of Nova Scotia
Preceded by
John Lowther
Baronet
(of Lowther)
1675–1700
Succeeded by
Richard Lowther