Robert Pitt

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Robert Pitt (1680 – 21 May 1727) was a British politician who sat as Member of Parliament for Old Sarum from 1705, a pocket borough controlled by his family. He was the eldest son of Governor Thomas 'Diamond' Pitt, a businessman who had made a fortune while in India.[1] Governor Pitt built the family's wealth on his acquisition of the Pitt Diamond which he then sold on for a large profit. The diamond was brought into Britain in the heel of Robert Pitt's boot.[2] Unlike the rest of his family, who were Whigs, Robert Pitt became a Tory possibly partly in resistance to his domineering Whig father.[3]

Pitt married Harriet Villiers,[4] the daughter of Edward Villiers-FitzGerald and the Irish heiress Katherine FitzGerald.

Robert Pitt is best known for being the father of William Pitt the Elder, a British statesmen who led the country three times between 1756–57, 1757–62 and 1766–68. Another son Thomas Pitt was also an MP who sat for Okehampton. He was also brother-in-law to General James Stanhope, through his sister Lucy Pitt. His grandson William Pitt the Younger became Prime Minister in 1783.

Pitt inherited the family estate of Boconnoc following his father's death in 1726. However, he died the next year and the estate passed entirely to his son Thomas Pitt.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Black p.1-5
  2. ^ Brown p.15-16
  3. ^ Brown p.17
  4. ^ "Lady Harriet Villiers (I3347)". University of Stanford. 

Bibliography[edit]

  • Black, Jeremy. Pitt the Elder. Cambridge University Press, 1992.
  • Brown, Peter Douglas. William Pitt, Earl of Chatham: The Great Commoner. Allen & Unwin, 1978.
Parliament of England
Preceded by
William Harvey
Charles Mompesson
Member of Parliament for Old Sarum
1705–1707
With: Charles Mompesson
Succeeded by
Parliament of Great Britain
Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Parliament of England
Member of Parliament for Old Sarum
1707–1710
With: Charles Mompesson 1707–1708
William Harvey 1708–1710
Succeeded by
Thomas Pitt
William Harvey
Preceded by
Robert Eyre
Charles Fox
Member of Parliament for Salisbury
1710–1713
With: Charles Fox
Succeeded by
Charles Fox
Richard Jones
Preceded by
Thomas Pitt
William Harvey
Member of Parliament for Old Sarum
1713–1722
With: Thomas Pitt 1713–1716, 1722
Sir William Strickland 1716–1722
Succeeded by
Thomas Pitt
George Morton Pitt
Preceded by
Christopher Harris
William Northmore
Member of Parliament for Okehampton
1722–1727
With: John Crowley
Succeeded by
William Northmore
Thomas Pitt