DARLING, Sir Robert (d.1770), of Bethnal Green, London

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1768 - 4 Aug. 1770

Family and Education

unm.  Kntd. 8 Oct. 1766.

Offices Held

Sheriff, London and Mdx. 1766-7.


Darling, according to a local antiquary,1 was

born at Chellington [Beds.] of humble parentage, where when a boy he used to keep cows on the hill on which the church stands. When of proper age, as we have been informed, he put himself apprentice to a lapidary, after which by great diligence and other means he acquired a large fortune.

In the London directories he appears as a merchant trading at Mile End; and in a list of the House of Commons, published in the Gentleman’s Magazine for 1769,2 as a ‘contractor for cartouch boxes for the army’. His will3 shows that he had property in London, the home counties, and Cumberland; and also at Wendover.

Darling was returned at Wendover with the support of Robert Atkins, a lace maker in the town, who led an opposition to Lord Verney, patron of the borough; according to Oldfield4‘no opposition [to Verney] was expected until the day of election’.

In the House, Darling supported Administration over Wilkes and the Middlesex election. There is no record of his having spoken.  He died 4 Aug. 1770.


Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: John Brooke


  • 1. Rev. T. O. Marsh, ‘Colls. for a biog. of remarkable persons connected with the county of Bedford’, Add. 21067, f. 62.
  • 2. Supplement, p. 632.
  • 3. N. Q. (ser. 8), ii. 387.
  • 4. Hist. Boroughs, i. 40.