1st Earl of Bristol (1714-1751)
Born 1665 Died 1751
John Hervey born on the 27th of August 1665, was educated at Clare Hall, Cambridge, and became member of parliament for Bury St. Edmunds in March 1694. In March 1703 he was created Baron Hervey of Ickworth, and in October 1714 was made Earl of Bristol as a reward for his zeal in promoting the principles of the revolution and supporting the Hanoverian succession. He died on the 20th of January 1751.
By his first wife, Isabella (d. 1693), daughter of Sir Robert Carr, Baronet, of Sleaford, he had one son, Carr, Lord Harvey (169117 23), who was educated at Clare Hall, Cambridge, and was member for Bury St Edmunds from 1713 to 1722. (It has been suggested that Carr, who died unmarried on the 14th of November 1723, was the father of Horace Walpole.) He married secondly Elizabeth (d. 1741), daughter and co-heiress of Sir Thomas Felton, Baronet, of Playford, Suffolk, by whom he had ten sons and six daughters.
His eldest son, John (1696-1743), took the courtesy title of Lord Hervey on the death of his half-brother, Carr, in 1723, and gained some renown both as a writer and a politician (see Hervey of Ickworth). Another son, Thomas (1699-1775), was one of the members for Bury from 1733 to 1747; held various offices at court; and eloped with Elizabeth, wife of Sir Thomas Hanmer. He had very poor health, and his reckless life frequently brought him into pecuniary and other difficulties. He wrote numerous pamphlets, and when he died Dr Johnson said of him, "Tom Hervey, though a vicious man, was one of the genteelest men who ever lived". Another of the 1st earl's sons, Felton (1712-1773), was also member for the family borough of Bury St Edmunds. Having assumed the additional name of Bathurst, Felton's grandson, Felton Elwell Hervey-Bathurst (1782-1819), was created a baronet in 1818, and on his death a year later the title descended to his brother, Frederick Anne (1783-1824), the direct ancestor of the present baronet.
The 1st earl died in January 1751, the title and estates descending to his grandson.
Extracted from the entry for BRISTOL, EARLS AND MARQUESSES OF OF in the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica, the text of which lies within the public domain.