BOSCAWEN, Hon. Edward (1711-61), of Hatchlands Park, Surr.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1715-1754, ed. R. Sedgwick, 1970
Available from Boydell and Brewer



21 June 1742 - 10 Jan. 1761

Family and Education

b. 19 Aug. 1711, 3rd s. of Hugh Boscawen, 1st Visct. Falmouth, and bro. of Hon. George, Hugh and John Boscawen. m. 11 Dec. 1742, Frances, da. of William Evelyn Glanville of St. Clere, Ightham, Kent, 3s. 2da.

Offices Held

Entered R.N. 1726, lt. 1732, capt. 1737, r.-adm. 1747, v.-adm. 1755, adm. 1758; gen. of marines 1759; elder bro. of Trinity House 1751; ld. of Admiralty 1751-d.; P.C. 2 Feb. 1759.


After serving with distinction at Portobello and Cartagena under Vernon, Boscawen was returned for Truro by his brother Hugh, 2nd Lord Falmouth, in 1742, voting with the Government on the Hanoverians in 1744, and classed as Old Whig in 1746. He had an important share in the victory of Anson’s fleet over the French at Cape Finisterre on 3 May 1747. ‘His behaviour in the action pleased me’, Anson wrote to the Duke of Bedford, then first lord of the Admiralty, ‘and I hope your Grace will make him a rear-admiral’. He became the youngest flag officer in the navy. But he was dissatisfied with his bare promotion which had, in any case, been settled before the arrival of the news of the action. According to Horace Walpole, it was felt that Anson had ‘carried off all the glory of the victory at Cape Finisterre, though Boscawen had done the service’.1

In 1747 Boscawen was chosen at Saltash as well as Truro, taking his seat for Truro, where a proposed opposition to him had been abandoned because ‘the majority of the electors ... [were] so attached to the Tregothnan family by the behaviour of Capt. Boscawen, and his taking some of their sons to sea with him’. In 1751 he applied successfully to Newcastle to be made a lord of the Admiralty as ‘the only post a sea officer of my rank can have’.2 In the seven years’ war his victory at the battle of Lagos made him a national hero.

He died 10 Jan. 1761.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Bedford Corresp. i. 214; C. Aspinall-Oglander, Admiral's Wife, 46-49; Walpole, Mems. Geo. II, i. 194.
  • 2. HMC Fortescue, i. 109; Add. 32724, f. 364.