TRELAWNY, Henry (c.1658-1702), of Whitleigh, Devon

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1685 - 1687
1689 - 1700
Feb. 1701 - 8 Jan. 1702

Family and Education

b. c.1658, 7th s. of Sir Jonathan Trelawny, 2nd Bt.†, and bro. of Charles* and John Trelawny†.  m. (1) 8 Jan. 1690, Rebecca (d. 1699), da. and coh. of Matthew Hals of Efford, Egg Buckland, Devon, 2s. 3da. (1 d.v.p.); (2) 26 Mar. 1701, Mary, da. of Richard Trevill of Butshead, Devon, wid. of Thomas Stawell of Bickington, Devon, s.p.1

Offices Held

Lt. of ft. Admiralty Regt. 1678–81; capt. 4 Ft. 1684, lt.-col. 1689, col. 1692–d.; brig.-gen. 1696.

Freeman, E. Looe 1685; v.-adm. S. Cornw. 1693–d.2

Commr. receiving subscriptions to land bank 1696.3


An army officer who served in the regiment of his brother Charles, Trelawny joined William of Orange in 1688. He held duchy of Cornwall leases of the manors of Carradon Prior and Boyton, but resided at Whitleigh in the neighbouring county. Returned for his family’s borough of East Looe in 1690, he was classed as a Tory and Court supporter by Lord Carmarthen (Sir Thomas Osborne†). In December 1690 he was listed as likely to support Carmarthan should his position come under attack in the Commons. Early in 1692 he succeeded his brother in the command of a regiment of foot and embarked with it for Flanders in late March. This explains his classification as a placeman and Court supporter in various lists compiled during this Parliament. He received a pass in April 1693 to return to Flanders and in July his regiment were made prisoners and ‘stripped of their clothes’ by the French at Huy. On 28 Mar. 1694 the House granted him leave of absence. In 1694, and again in 1696, as vice-admiral of Cornwall, he was active in raising men for the fleet.4

At the general election of autumn 1695 Trelawny was again returned for East Looe. He was forecast in January 1696 as likely to oppose the Court on the proposed council of trade, signed the Association, but, unlike his brother, voted for fixing the price of guineas at 22s. He went over to Flanders for the next campaign and was promoted to brigadier-general by the King. He also served in the 1697 campaign. On 30 Apr. 1698 he was given leave of absence for three weeks. Classed as a placeman in 1698 and as a member of the Court party, he voted against the disbanding bill on 18 Jan. 1699. As the colonel of a regiment formed before September 1680, he did not face disbandment, and his regiment duly appeared in the list of those retained in February 1699. However, he was placed on half-pay in March 1700. In an analysis of the House into ‘interests’ and ‘factions’ in 1700 his name was marked with a query. At the election to the first 1701 Parliament he transferred to Plymouth, which his brother also represented, to make way for Hon. Francis Godolphin*. Trelawny was listed in February as likely to support the Court over the ‘Great Mortgage’ and was later blacklisted as having opposed the preparations for war against France. In December 1701, he was classed as a Tory by Harley. Trelawny died on 8 Jan. 1702. At the ‘great funeral’ held for him at Plymouth, members of the corporation ‘who voted otherwise than they used to do, were left without any notice being taken of them, while the others went off with their scarves and gloves’.5

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Authors: Eveline Cruickshanks / Stuart Handley


  • 1. Vivian, Vis. Cornw. 477; C. D. Stawell, Stawell Fam. 167; Trans. Plymouth Inst. ix. 101.
  • 2. A. L. Browne, Corp. Chron. 58; Cal. Treas. Bks. x. 488, 1696.
  • 3. CJ, xii. 510.
  • 4. Cal. Treas. Bks. xvii. 221, 358; ix. 1111; CSP Dom. 1691–2, p. 215; 1693, p. 98; Luttrell, Brief Relation, ii. 406; iii. 143.
  • 5. Luttrell, iv. 68, 231, 487; CSP Dom. 1697, pp. 224, 228; 1699–1700, pp. 69–70; Add. 17677 RR, ff. 528–9; Cal. Treas. Bks. xv. 320; E. F. Eliott-Drake, Fam. Sir Francis Drake, ii. 145.