MORE, Robert (1703-80), of Linley Hall, Salop.
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Family and Education
b. May 1703, o.s. of Robert More of Linley (formerly a London merchant) by Sarah, da. of John Walcot of Walcot, Salop. educ. Queens’, Camb. 1723-5. m. (1) 1750, Ellen, da. of Thomas Wilson of Trevallyn, Denb., 2s.; (2) 8 Feb. 1768, Catherine, da. of Thomas More of Millichope, s.p. suc. fa. 1719.
More was a Whig of the old type, Puritan in his feelings and by family tradition. ‘As the civil and religious liberties have been driven to a party for their support in the Parliament of 1641,’ he wrote on 19 June 1759,1 ‘when the great conflict began ... my ancestor, a Member, then had, and all his posterity to this day have, uniformly and very zealously attached themselves to that party in the cause of liberty; with them I have always voted in elections and will vote—with them I live and die.’
On 25 Oct. 1753, when More had been out of Parliament twelve years, a group of Protestant Dissenters, burgesses of Shrewsbury, wrote to invite him to become a candidate at the forthcoming general election.2 The next day, at a meeting of the mayor and corporation, More and Thomas Hill were unanimously adopted. They were backed by Lord Powis, leader of the Shropshire Whigs, and by the Tories, and were returned unopposed. Two speeches by More are reported in the Parliament of 1754-61: 16 June 1758, on the motion to increase the judges’ salaries;3 and 18 Mar. 1761, when the House was returning thanks to Speaker Onslow. Horace Walpole wrote:4
Mr. More of Shrewsbury, an old and acute Member, proposed to erect a statue to the Speaker’s memory, with great encomiums on the authority with which he had formerly kept in order such men as then filled the Treasury bench and composed the Opposition, naming among the former Sir Robert Walpole and Mr. Pelham, the latter of whom, he said, had the honour of dying a commoner. More was a Whig of the primitive stamp, and though attached to Sir Robert Walpole, had withstood, and by the force of his honest abilities, had defeated the intended clemency of that minister to some attainted Jacobite families with respect to their estates. He had long abstained from Parliament, returned to it without his former success, and now appeared there for the last time.
More died 5 Jan. 1780.