LONG (afterwards TYLNEY LONG), Sir James, 7th Bt. (?1737-94), of Draycot Cerne, Wilts.
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Family and Education
b. ?1737, 1st s. of Sir Robert Long, 6th Bt. educ. Westminster 1749-c.1754; Oriel, Oxf. 2 Nov. 1756, aged 19. m. (1) 10 July 1775, Hon. Harriet Bouverie (d. 12 Nov. 1777), da. of Jacob, 1st Visct. Folkestone, sis. of William, 1st Earl of Radnor, s.p.; (2) 26 July 1785, Lady Catherine Windsor, da. of Other Lewis, 4th Earl of Plymouth, 1s. 3da. suc. fa. 10 Feb. 1767; to estates of uncle John Child, 2nd Earl Tylney [I] 17 Feb. 1784 and took name of Tylney before Long.
Long was returned for Marlborough on the interest of his friend Lord Bruce (later Earl of Ailesbury). Like his father, he was classed in Bute’s list as a Tory, and voted against the peace preliminaries, 9 and 10 Dec. 1762, but unlike him does not appear in any other minority list 1763-4, possibly because of absence abroad. Lord Holland wrote to Lord Sandwich, 2 Oct. 1763:1 ‘I spoke to Lord Tylney, but could not hinder him from going to the south of France, but he says his nephew (Long) goes with him, and as far as regards the peace, is drawing off.’ Rockingham in his list of July 1765 considered him as ‘Tory’, as did Newcastle on 2 Mar. 1767. His only other recorded vote in this Parliament was with Opposition on nullum tempus, 17 Feb. 1768. In the next Parliament his attendance seems to have been infrequent: he voted with Opposition on the Spanish convention, 13 Feb. 1771 but he was listed as ‘pro, present’ in Robinson’s first survey on the royal marriage bill, March 1772, and his only other recorded votes were with Opposition on the naval captains’ petition, 9 Feb. 1773, and Grenville’s Act, 25 Feb. 1774, when he was marked in the King’s list as a friend. In Robinson’s list of September 1774 he is classed as ‘hopeful’. He does not appear in any of the minority lists 1775-80 though on the contractors bill, 12 Feb. 1779, he was reported as ‘contra, present’ with the mark of ‘friend’.
The Public Ledger wrote of him in 1779:
He is not celebrated for a peculiar attention to his parliamentary duties, but with less activity possesses also less of that genuine patriotic ardour which has characterized the majority of his ancestors. Although he deviates, however, from the prescriptive line of political sentiments which his predecessors have pursued, it is not all [sic] doubted that he resembles and equals them in the integrity of his intentions and the sincerity of his conduct. He is strongly attached to the Aylesbury family, and it is believed to be partly owing to the influence of that connection that he has undergone an involuntary bias against the doctrines of his family.
He voted with Opposition on economical reform, 8 Mar. 1780, and the abolition of the Board of Trade, 13 Mar. 1780, but with Administration on Dunning’s motion, 6 Apr. 1780, and the motion against prorogation, 24 Apr. 1780; and in Robinson’s survey of July 1780 was classed as ‘pro’. On 1 Sept. 1780, on hearing the news of the dissolution, Ailesbury wrote to Long:2
You must recollect your declaration to me at the last general election with regard to your seat in Parliament if my son had been of age. As that event will happen, please God, March two years, I should be glad to know whether it will be agreeable to you to continue one of the representatives for Marlborough until that time. I know there were instances at the last election ... of minors being chosen a year or two before they were of age, but I should prefer the more usual method of vacating a seat if you have no objection to being elected on that footing.
Long preferred to seek another constituency, and was returned unopposed for Devizes. He voted regularly with Administration till the fall of North; against Shelburne’s peace preliminaries, 18 Feb. 1783, but was absent from the division on Fox’s East India bill, 27 Nov. 1783. Robinson noted in his electoral survey of December 1783 that Long’s ‘inclinations are with Government’,3 and in January 1784 classed him as ‘very hopeful’. He was a member of the St. Alban’s Tavern group which attempted to bring about a union of parties, and after their failure was classed in Stockdale’s list of 19 Mar. and by Adam in May as ‘Administration’. He does not appear in any division list in the new Parliament, except as having paired in favour of Administration in the division on the Regency, 11 Feb. 1789. There is no record of his having spoken during his 32 years in Parliament.
After his death (aged 57) on 28 Nov. 1794, the Gentleman’s Magazine (1794, p. 1154) wrote of him:
Formed, by nature and by habit, for an honourable and useful retirement, he felt very little relish for the gay and splendid scenes of what is called high life ... His great accession of fortune a few years before his death ... certainly made no addition to his happiness. Accustomed from principle and from virtuous habits to live within the bounds of his paternal income, he would have been well content to have preserved to the end that character of uprightness and respectability, as a private country gentleman, which he had maintained in his native county.