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Sir Philip Miles, 2nd Baronet

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"Philip". Caricature by Spy published in Vanity Fair in 1879

Sir Philip John William Miles, 2nd Baronet (2 September 1825 – 5 June 1888) was an English politician. Educated at Eton College and Trinity College, Cambridge,[1] he then served in the 17th Lancers. He was a sheriff of Bristol in 1853 and partner in the family's bank, Miles & Co, from 1852 to 1854. He sat as Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) for East Somerset from 1878 to 1885 and was a member of the Carlton Club and the Army and Navy Club.

In 1878, he inherited the baronetcy of Leigh Court, Somerset, from his father William, who had previously been Conservative MP for East Somerset along, with estates in Somerset. He had his own estate in County Kerry, Ireland. He was cousin of Philip Napier Miles, Frank Miles and Katharine Tennant.

He supported an amendment to the Representation of the People Act 1884 and the Franchise Bill debated earlier that year, that would have allowed votes for women who were householders on equal terms with men. The vote was defeated and women finally received the vote in the UK in 1918.

Miles baronets, of Leigh Court
MottoLabora sicut bonus miles
ArmsAzure a chevron paly of six ermine and or between three lozenges argent each charged with a fleur-de-lis sable, in chief upon an inescutcheon argent a sinister hand appaume coupled at the wrist gules
CrestUpon a helm barry affronte with visor open a dexter arm embowed in armour proper garnished or supporting with the hand an anchor also proper

In 1848, he married Frances Roche (1827–1908), daughter of Sir David Roche, Bt, Roche baronets, MP for Limerick. Frances was a renowned society beauty nicknamed the "Venus of Miles" in reference to the classical sculpture the Venus de Milo. She attracted a number of admirers including Charles Manners, 6th Duke of Rutland who scandalised society by leaving his 120-foot yacht, Lufra, to her in his will.[2] They had the following children:

He died of acute laryngitis at his London house, 75 Cornwall Gardens, Kensington, SW, and was succeeded by his son, Cecil, in 1888. His widow subsequently married an American from St Louis, Missouri, Dr John Nicholls, in 1904 and they lived at Maidenhead, Berkshire, and she died in 1908.


  1. ^ "Miles, Philip William John (FML843PW)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  2. ^ Jordan, Anne (2010). Love Well the Hour: The Life of Lady Colin Campbell (1857–1911) – Anne Jordan. ISBN 9781848766112.
  3. ^ de:Mansel Lewis
  4. ^ "File:Mansel Lewis - Miss May Miles 1878.jpg - Wikimedia Commons". commons.wikimedia.org. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
  5. ^ "File:Hubert von Herkomer - Miss May Miles 1878.jpg - Wikimedia Commons". commons.wikimedia.org. Retrieved 13 April 2015.

External links[edit]

  • Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Sir Philip Miles
  • ThePeerage.com
  • The diary of Alice Miles was discovered in the 1980s amongst Duppa family papers and published in 1993 in edited form and with commentary, as "Every Girl's Duty: The Diary of a Victorian Debutante".
  • The Times, report of Parliamentary debate, 12 June 1884.
  • The Times, obituary notice 7 June 1888.
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Member of Parliament for East Somerset
With: Ralph Shuttleworth Allen
Succeeded by
Baronetage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Baronet
(of Leigh Court, Somerset)
Succeeded by