Thomas Potter (died 1759)
Potter was the second son of John Potter, Archbishop of Canterbury. He was born in 1718. He acquired a law degree at Christ Church, Oxford, and was admitted to the Middle Temple. Through his father's interest, he was able to secure the Recordership of Bath, a lucrative office. Originally a member for St Germans, in 1754 he was elected as MP for Aylesbury, a seat controlled by the powerful Grenville family with whom he was associated from then on. In 1756 he became a Vice-Treasurer of Ireland, another lucrative post, which did not require him to move to Ireland.
Potter acquired a reputation as a leading rake. Potter was a friend of John Wilkes, who he considered as something of a protégé. He was later accused of corrupting Wilkes who had been relatively innocent until that point. Politically he was aligned with William Pitt who he was a devoted follower of. He was a staunch supporter of Britain's participation in the Seven Years War.
He was believed to be the author of Essay on Woman, a crude parody of Alexander Pope's Essay on Man. The authorship of this was later attributed to John Wilkes, when it was read out in the House of Lords, during his expulsion from parliament in 1764.
- Brown, Peter Douglas. William Pitt, Earl of Chatham: The Great Commoner. George Allen & Unwin, 1978.
- Cash, Arthur H. John Wilkes: The Scandalous Father of Civil Liberty. Yale University Press, 2006.
- "Alumni oxonienses: the members of the University of Oxford, 1715-1886, vol.3".
- Cash p.44
- Cash p.29-36
- Brown p.125
- Brown p.188
- Cash p.55
|Parliament of Great Britain|
John Hynde Cotton
|Member of Parliament for St Germans
With: Richard Eliot 1747–48
Edward Craggs-Eliot 1748–54
The Earl of Inchiquin
|Member of Parliament for Aylesbury
With: John Willes
|Member of Parliament for Okehampton
With: Robert Vyner
George Brydges Rodney