CLUTTERBUCK, Thomas (1697-1742), of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Mdx.

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



2 Nov. 1722 - 1734
1734 - 23 Nov. 1742

Family and Education

b. 1697, 1st and posth. s. of Thomas Clutterbuck of Ingatestone, Essex by Bridgett, da. of Sir Thomas Exton, LL.D., one of six clerks in Chancery. educ. Ch. Ch. Oxf. 20 Oct. 1713, aged 16; M. Temple 1713. m. 1 May 1731, Henrietta Cuffe Tollemache, da. of Lionel, Lord Huntingtower, sis. to Lionel, 4th Earl of Dysart [S], 1s. 3da.

Offices Held

Sec. to ld. lt. [I] 1724-30; ld. of Admiralty 1732-41, of Treasury 1741-2; treasurer of the navy 1742-d.; P.C. 24 June 1742.


Clutterbuck began his career as the protégé of Carteret, who, on being appointed lord lieutenant of Ireland, made him his secretary. When Carteret went out in 1730, Clutterbuck attached himself to Walpole and the Pelhams, seconding the Address at the opening of the session of 1732, at the end of which he was made a lord of the Admiralty. He spoke for the Government on the army and navy estimates, 2 and 5 Feb. 1733 and 28 Jan. 1734,1 and against opposition motions for restricting the Crown’s power of dismissing army officers and for a place bill, 13 and 26 Feb. 1734.2 Disappointed at being passed over for a vacancy on the Treasury board, for which he had been recommended by the Pelhams to Walpole in 1735, he showed his resentment by absenting ‘himself entirely from Sir Robert Walpole’. It is to this stage of his career that Hervey refers when he says that Clutterbuck was

sensible, beloved and had a good character, but was lazy, indolent and mute, and of no use in Parliament but counting one in a division.3

He is not reported as speaking again till 1740, when he spoke several times for the Government on naval matters (24 and 29 Jan., 1 Feb.), also moving an address approving a supply for the support of the Queen of Hungary (8 Apr.). He was rewarded with a seat on the Treasury board in 1741, which he lost on Walpole’s fall next year. According to Horace Walpole,

on Sir Robert Walpole’s quitting, he appointed a board of Treasury at his own house to sign some appointments. Mr. Clutterbuck made a pretext to slip away and never returned.

Horace Walpole also states, on the authority of his father, that Clutterbuck, after losing his Treasury place, persuaded his friend, Arthur Onslow, whom he had seconded for re-election as Speaker at the opening of Parliament, to resign the post of treasurer of the navy by

telling him that the Opposition thought he would be more impartial if he had no place: this was his [Onslow’s] foible; he resigned, and Mr. Clutterbuck immediately got the place.4

He died 23 Nov. 1742.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754

Author: Shirley Matthews


  • 1. Stuart mss 159/155; HMC Egmot Diary, ii. 15.
  • 2. Stuart mss 169/90, 117.
  • 3. Hervey, Mems, 451, 452, 455.
  • 4. Corresp. H. Walpole (Yale ed.), xxx. 293 n. 25; xvii, 391 n. 10.