Southern Anthology

Families on the Frontiers of the Old South

Topham Beauclerk

Topham Beauclerk[1, 2]

Male 1739 - 1780  (~ 40 years)

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  • Name Topham Beauclerk 
    Topham Beauclerk
    Topham Beauclerk
    Francis Cotes (17261770), artist.
    Born Dec 1739 
    Gender Male 
    Died 11 Mar 1780 
    • BEAUCLERK, TOPHAM (1739-1780), a friend of Dr. Johnson, was the only son of Lord Sydney Beauclerk and a grandson of the first Duke of St. Albans. He was born in December 1739, and on the death of his father, 23 Nov. 1744, succeeded to the estates which Lord Sydney Beauclerk, a man notorious in his day for fortune-hunting, had inherited from Mr. Richard Topham, M.P. for Windsor. Topham Beauclerk matriculated at Trinity College, Oxford, 11 November 1767, but does not seem to have taken any degree.

      Whilst there he had the good fortune to make the acquaintance of Bennet Langton. Beauclerk's tastes were widespread, both in science and literature; his conversation was easy and vivacious, with that 'air of the world' which showed that he had seen much, and knew how to describe what he had seen. But his talents would have passed away without leaving any record behind them had he not sought the acquaintance of Dr. Johnson, and been loved by him with signal devotion. From 1767 to 1780 his name and his good qualities are written in the pages of Boswell. He married, at St. George's, Hanover Square, 12 March 1768, Lady Diana Spencer, eldest daughter of the second Duke of Marlborough, two days after she had been divorced from Lord St. John and Bolingbroke, and she made an excellent wife to her new husband. Beauclerk died at Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, 11 March 1780, leaving issue one son and two daughters. His library of 30,000 volumes, housed, as Horace Walpole remarks, in a building 'that reaches half-way to Highgate,' was sold by auction April-June 1781, and was especially rich in English plays and English history, travels and science. A catalogue ('Bibliotheca Beauclerkiana') is in the British Museum. Many of Beauclerk's letters are in the possession of Lord Charlemont.

      [Brydges's Collins's Peerage, i. 249; Gent Mag. 1. 155 (1780); Hardy's Lord Charlemont; Cornhill Mag. xxx. 281-96 (1875), by G. B. H. (Hill).]

      W. P. C. [3]
    Person ID I25336  Dickinson
    Last Modified 30 Nov 2019 

    Father Sydney Beauclerk, PC,   b. 27 Feb 1703,   d. 23 Nov 1744  (Age 41 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Mary Norris,   d. 20 Nov 1766 
    Relationship Birth 
    Married 9 Dec 1736 
    Family ID F7876  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Diana Spencer, Viscountess Bolingbroke,   b. 24 Mar 1734,   d. 1 Aug 1808  (Age 74 years) 
    Married 12 Mar 1768  St. George's Church, St. George Street, Hanover Square, London, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
     1. Mary Day Beauclerk,   b. 20 Aug 1766,   d. 23 Jul 1851  (Age 84 years)  [Birth]
    +2. Elizabeth Beauclerk,   b. 20 Aug 1766,   d. 25 Mar 1793  (Age 26 years)  [Birth]
     3. Charles George Beauclerk,   b. 20 Jan 1774,   d. 25 Dec 1845  (Age 71 years)  [Birth]
    Last Modified 25 Nov 2019 
    Family ID F7873  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 12 Mar 1768 - St. George's Church, St. George Street, Hanover Square, London, England Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S336470] Wikipedia, (Online:, "Topham Beauclerk" at, 24 Nov 2019.
      Topham Beauclerk (boh-KLAIR; 22 December 1739 - 11 March 1780) was a celebrated wit and a friend of Dr Johnson and Horace Walpole.

    2. [S39] The Peerage, Darryl Lundy, (Online:, 20xx),, 24 Nov 2019.

    3. [S336351] Dictionary of National Biography, 63 volumes, Sir Sidney Lee, ed., (New York: McMillan and Company, 1885-1900), Public Domain., "Beauclerk, Topham" by William Prideaux Courtney, 4: 36 and at, 26 Nov 2019.