Born George Amyand, he was the eldest son and heir of Sir George Amyand, 1st Baronet (1720–1766) by his wife Anna Maria Korteen, daughter of John Abraham Korteen, a Hamburg merchant. In 1766 he succeeded his father as 2nd Baronet and inherited his interest in the banking firm of Amyand, Staples and Mercer.
Amyand was educated at Eton College then at Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated Master of Arts in 1769. In 1771 he assumed by royal licence the surname and arms of Cornewall in lieu of his patronymic, in accordance with the bequest from his father-in-law, an inheritance which included Moccas Park in Herefordshire. In 1773 he received a Doctorate of Civil Law from the University of Oxford.
Cornewall entered the British House of Commons in 1774, sitting for Herefordshire until 1796. He represented the constituency again in the Parliament of the United Kingdom between 1802 and 1807. He served in the Herefordshire Militia and became its colonel in 1805.
He was owner of a plantation in Grenada, West Indies, and in 1775–81 re-built Moccas Court, the family's later residence in Herefordshire. He inherited Mouse Castle, Cusop but exchanged it. In 1800, he sold Frilsham, Berkshire, which his father had purchased in 1762, to Robert Hayward.
Marriage and progeny
On 18 July 1771 he married Catherine Cornewall, only daughter and heiress of Velters Cornewall of Moccas in Herefordshire, MP. His wife's family claimed descent from a younger branch of the de Cornewall family, Barons of Burford, lineally descended from Sir Richard of Cornwall (d.1296, slain by an arrow at the Siege of Berwick), a natural son of Richard, 1st Earl of Cornwall (1209-1272), (2nd son of King John) by his mistress Joan de Bath. Sir Richard of Cornwall married Joan FitzAlan, daughter of John FitzAlan, 6th Earl of Arundel, and by her had three sons and a daughter. His daughter, Joan of Cornwall, married Sir John Howard, from whom the Howard family, Dukes of Norfolk, are descended. The arms of de Cornwall were: Argent, a lion rampant gules ducally crowned or a bordure engrailed sable bezantee, being the arms of Richard, 1st Earl of Cornwall with difference a bordure engrailed. By his wife Catherine Cornewall he had two sons and six daughters:
- Catherine-Frances Cornewall (1773-1826), married Samuel Peploe of Garnstone Castle, Weobley 15 March 1796.
- Sir George Cornewall, 3rd Baronet (1774–1835), eldest son and heir.
- Hannah Cornewall (died young)
- Anna-Maria Cornewall (1779-1872)
- Frances-Elizabeth Cornewall (1783-1864), married Henry Devereux, 14th Viscount Hereford, 12 December 1805.
- Charles Cornewall (1785-1822).
- Harriet Cornewall (1787-1838), married Thomas Frankland Lewis, 12 January 1805.
- Caroline Cornewall (1789-1875), married Sir William Duff-Gordon, 5 February 1810
Death and burial
Cornewall died in 1819 and was buried at Moccas.
- Courthope, William, ed. (1835). Debrett's Baronetage of England (7th ed.). London. p. 185.
- Cokayne, George Edward, ed. (1900). Complete Baronetage. Exeter: William Pollard. pp. 130–131.
- Debrett, John (1824). Debrett's Baronetage of England. vol. II (5th ed.). London: G. Woodfall. p. 478.
- Drummond, Mary (1964). "Cornewall, Sir George (1748-1819)". In Namier, Sir Lewis; Brooke, John. The House of Commons 1754-1790. The History of Parliament Trust.
- The London Gazette: . 16 July 1771. Retrieved 17 July 2009.
- "History". Moccas Court. Archived from the original on 16 July 2014. Retrieved 16 June 2015.
- Robinson, Charles John (1869). A history of the castles of Herefordshire and their lords. London: Longman. pp. 40–41.
- Page, William; Ditchfield, P H, eds. (1924). "Parishes: Frilsham". A History of the County of Berkshire. Volume 4. London: Victoria County History. pp. 70–73. Retrieved 31 January 2016.
- Foljambe, Cecil George; Reade, Compton (1908). The House of Cornewall. Hereford: Jakeman and Carver. pp. 119–121.
- Richardson, Douglas (2011). Everingham, Kimball G, ed. Plantagenet Ancestry: A Study in Colonial & Medieval Families (2nd ed.). Salt Lake City: CreateSpace. ISBN 9781461045137. Vol. I pp. 574-5; Vol II p 265.
- Debrett's gives this daughter's name as Harriet; Foljambe and Compton (1908) has Hannah.
- Thorne, R. G. (1986). "Lewis, Thomas Frankland (1780-1855)". In Thorne, R. G. The House of Commons 1790-1820. The History of Parliament Trust.
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Sir George Cornewall, 2nd Baronet
|Parliament of Great Britain|
|Member of Parliament for Herefordshire
With: Thomas Foley 1774–1776
Thomas Harley 1776–1796
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for Herefordshire
With: Sir John Geers Cotterell 1802–1803
John Matthews 1803–1806
Sir John Geers Cotterell 1806–1807
Sir John Geers Cotterell
|Baronetage of Great Britain|
(of Moccas Court)