VERNEY, Ralph, 2nd Visct. Fermanagh [I] (1683-1752), of Middle Claydon, nr. Buckingham, Bucks.

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



10 July 1717 - 1727
1741 - 4 Oct. 1752

Family and Education

b. 18 Mar. 1683, 1st s. of John Verney, 1st Visct. Fermanagh [I], by his 1st w. educ. Mrs. Morland’s sch. at Hackney c.1695-1700; Merton, Oxf. 1700. m. 24 Feb. 1708, Catherine, da. and coh. of Henry Paschall of Baddow, Essex, 2s. 2da. suc. fa. 23 June 1717; cr. Earl Verney [I] 22 Mar. 1743.

Offices Held


On leaving Oxford Ralph Verney had rooms for some years in the Middle Temple but does not seem to have been admitted to the Inn. Succeeding his father on the Drake interest at Amersham in 1717, he voted as a Tory against the repeal of the Occasional Conformity and Schism Acts and the peerage bill in 1719. His name was sent to the Pretender in 1721 as a probable supporter in case of a rebellion. Re-elected in 1722, he did not stand in 1727, when he was described as ‘being unconcerned for any party’,1 nor in 1734; but he began to develop an interest at Wendover, eventually acquiring control of that borough from John Hampden,2 with whom he was returned for it from 1741. Voting consistently with the Administration, he obtained an Irish earldom in 1743, being classed as an Old Whig in 1746 and as a government supporter in 1747. The second Lord Egmont, in his electoral survey c.1749-50, wrote against Wendover:

Earl Verney can bring in two. He lives a close sort of life, does not know very much of the world, and seems a man to be gained with what will cost little. At least he will not give himself up to a faction against any Administration, if they have but common address.

On which the Prince of Wales commented: ‘L.C. Justice Willes and Potter know how to deal with him’.

He died 4 Oct. 1752.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754

Author: R. S. Lea


  • 1. Stuart mss 65/16; Verney Letters of 18th Cent. i. 100-1; ii. 100.
  • 2. See WENDOVER.