Harry Trelawney Eve

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Harry Eve
"A Good Judge"
The Hon Mr Justice Eve as caricatured in Vanity Fair, March 1911

Sir Harry Trelawney Eve, KC (13 October 1856 – 10 December 1940) was an English barrister, judge and Liberal Party politician.

Family and education[edit]

Harry Trelawney Eve was born in London. He was the only son of Thomas Eve, a Jamaica merchant. He was educated privately and at Exeter College, Oxford where he gained his BA degree in 1876 and his MA in 1883.[1] On 24 June 1879 Eve married Beatrice Wright, daughter of Henry Strangways Hounsell, a medical doctor from Torquay.[2] They had one son (who was killed in action in 1917) and two daughters.[3]

Harry Trelawney Eve was building "Forder Gardens" in South Devon for his son, when he sadly died in action. The house was left incomplete, with only the walls and Gate houses left behind.


Eve went in for the law. He was called to the bar at Lincoln’s Inn in 1881, practised at the Chancery Bar [4] and took silk in 1895.[5] He became a bencher of Lincoln’s Inn in 1899. In 1907 he was appointed to be a judge in the Chancery Division and he served in that capacity until 1937 when he retired. He was asked to sit in the Court of Appeal on many occasions but was never promoted to sit there permanently.[6]

Eve was also a farmer. He owned land in Devon and farmed it professionally.[7] He was particularly interested in the breeding of South Devon cattle.[8] He listed farming as a recreation in Who’s Who [9] and was member of the Farming Club.[10]

Eve had other business and financial interests too. In 1907 he was elected as a director of the Equitable Life Assurance Society.[11]


In 1904, Eve accepted the invitation of the Liberal Party in Ashburton in Devon to become their candidate in the by-election caused by the death of the sitting Liberal MP, Charles Seale-Hayne.[12] He won the seat and represented Ashburton until 1907 when he resigned to take up his appointment as a judge.[13]

Other appointments and honours[edit]

Eve was made a Justice of the Peace for the county of Devon in 1903.[14] In 1907 he was elected an honorary fellow of Exeter College, Oxford, and was knighted in the same year.[15] He retired from the bench in 1937 for reasons of declining health [16] and was sworn in as a member of the Privy Council.[17]


Eve died at Eldon House, Lower Bourne, Farnham, Surrey, on 10 December 1940 [18] at the age of 84 years.[19]


  1. ^ H. G. Hanbury, rev. Sinéad Agnew, Harry Trelawney Eve in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography; OUP 2004-09
  2. ^ Who was Who, OUP 2007
  3. ^ Hanbury, DNB
  4. ^ The Times, 11 December 1940 p9
  5. ^ The Times, 22 July 1895 p9
  6. ^ The Times, 11 December 1940 p9
  7. ^ The Times, 11 December 1917 p12
  8. ^ The British Year Book of Agriculture and Agricultural Who’s Who; Vinton & Co, 1908 p500
  9. ^ Who was Who, OUP 2007
  10. ^ The Times, 11 December 1940 p9
  11. ^ The Times, 3 May 1907 p13
  12. ^ The Times, 3 December 1903 p5
  13. ^ Hanbury, DNB
  14. ^ Who was Who, OUP 2007
  15. ^ Hanbury, DNB
  16. ^ The Times, 4 March 1937 p14
  17. ^ The Times,19 March 1937 p19
  18. ^ Hanbury, DNB
  19. ^ http://www.leighrayment.com/commons/Acommons3.htm

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Charles Seale-Hayne
Member of Parliament for Ashburton
Succeeded by
Ernest Morrison-Bell