PROBYN, John (1703-73), of Newland, Glos.

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



1754 - 1761

Family and Education

bap. 3 Feb. 1703, 2nd s. of Rev. William Hopkins, rector of Llanfihangel Ystern Llewern, Mon. by Sarah, da. of William Probyn of Newland, sis. of Sir Edmund Probyn, chief baron of the Exchequer 1740-2.  educ. M. Temple 25 Mar. 1725; L. Inn 19 Oct. 1725, called 1730.  m. Sept. 1734, Ann, da. and h. of John Howell of Enfield, Mdx., sec. to bankruptcy commission, 1s. 1da.  suc. to Newland estates of his uncle, Sir Edmund Probyn 1742, and assumed his name.

Offices Held

Bankruptcy commr. c.1748-c.1755; verderer of forest of Dean 1752- d.; bencher, L. Inn 1754, dean of the chapel 1764.


Probyn entered political life under the patronage of Lord Gage, a neighbour in Gloucestershire, and a follower of the Prince of Wales. In 1751 he was introduced, with T. E. Cresswell, to the borough of Wootton Bassett, to stand upon the St. John interest at the next election, and in 1754 was returned after a contest. In Dupplin’s list he was classed as an Opposition Whig, and when the defeated Government candidates petitioned against his return, the Rev. James Birt wrote from Newland to John Bond, asking for his support for Probyn: ‘He has nothing to dread but ministerial violence, a thing too common in your house.’ And about Probyn: ‘He is a person firmly attached to his Majesty’s Royal House, and amiable in private life, as a good father, a good husband and a good friend.’1 Newcastle refused to support the petition against Probyn, and Probyn apparently did not vote with the Opposition in December 1755. On 5 Oct. 1756 he unsuccessfully applied to Hardwicke for an appointment:

If your Lordship thinks me equal to the office, and deserving of his Majesty’s favour, I presume to beg your recommendation to his Majesty to succeed Mr. Talbot as a Welsh judge in the Chester circuit.

No speech of his is recorded, and only one vote, on 30 Apr. 1759, against the privateer bill.2

Probyn did not stand for re-election in 1761; and died 22 Mar. 1773.

Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: J. A. Cannon


  • 1. Bond mss at Creech Grange.
  • 2. Add. 35594, f. 240; 32890, f. 401.