STEPHENS, Thomas II (1672-1720), of Lypiatt Park, nr. Stroud, Glos.
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Family and Education
bap. 5 Feb. 1672, 1st s. of Thomas Stephens I*. educ. Christ Church, Oxf. 1688. m. bef.1699, Anne, da. of John Neale† of Dean, Beds., 2s. 4da. suc. fa. 1708.1
Freeman, Gloucester 1710.2
Stephens’ adoption of his father’s Whiggery and his succession to the family’s extensive Gloucestershire estates in 1708 marked him as a likely contender for a county seat in Parliament. When he stood in 1713 he achieved second place in the poll, but only by a margin of some 40 or so votes. The result was warmly greeted, however, as the defeated sitting Whig Matthew Ducie Moreton* was a great favourite with Dissenters and ‘violent Whigs’. He was classed as a Whig on the Worsley list of the 1713 and 1715 Parliaments, and on 18 Mar. 1714 voted against the expulsion of Richard Steele. His parliamentary activities can usually be differentiated from those of William Stephens since, as a rule, the Journal clerks referred to the latter as ‘colonel’. He continued to serve during the first Parliament of George I and died of smallpox on 24 Feb. 1720.3