VILLIERS, George, Visct. Villiers (1751-1800).
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Family and Education
b. 13 July 1751, o. surv. s. of Aland John Mason by Lady Elizabeth Villiers, da. and h. of John, 1st Earl Grandison [I]. She was cr. Viscountess Grandison [I] 10 Apr. 1746, Countess Grandison [I] 19 Feb. 1767. educ. Eton 1762-6. m. 10 Feb. 1772, Lady Gertrude Seymour Conway, da. of Francis, 1st Mq. of Hertford, 1da. suc. fa. 26 Mar. 1759; took name of Villiers 21 Oct. 1771; and suc. mother as 2nd Earl Grandison 29 May 1782.
P.C. [I] 5 Nov. 1785.
Villiers, a spoilt only child, early developed extravagant tastes: ‘His Lordship is very ingenious in the art of wasting the most possible money in the least possible time,’ Mrs. Boscawen, widow of the Admiral, wrote to Mrs. Delany, 30 Sept. 1772. And Mrs. Delany, on 2 Jan. 1773: ‘The chief topic of conversation yesterday was Lord Villiers’ appearance in the morning at court in a pale purple velvet coat turned up with lemon colour’, and embroidered all over with pearls and medallions ‘in beaten gold real solid’.1
In 1774 Villiers was returned unopposed at Ludlow on Lord Powis’s interest. No vote or speech by him is known, but the Public Ledger wrote in 1779 that he ‘invariably votes with the ministry’. On 8 Aug. 1777, Horace Walpole, who had described Villiers (to Mann, 9 Sept. 1771) before his marriage as ‘sensible enough and very good-natured’, wrote to Lady Upper Ossory: ‘Lord Villiers who has fashioned away all he has, is to remove with his wife to his mother’s and live there.’ He was classed by Robinson as ‘pro, abroad’ on the contractors bill, 12 Feb. 1779, and is similarly marked as ‘out of the kingdom’ in the extant division lists between March 1779 and April 1780. Robinson in his survey of July 1780 again counted him as ‘pro’, but noted: ‘Lord Villiers, being abroad, declines.’
He died 14 July 1800.
Ref Volumes: 1754-1790
Author: Mary M. Drummond
- 1. Mrs. Delany, Autobiog. Corresp. (ser. 2), i. 464, 490.