Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip

The Right Honourable
The Lord Mendip
Secretary of State for the Colonies
In office
February 1782  8 March 1782
Monarch George III
Prime Minister Lord North
Preceded by Lord George Germain
Succeeded by Office abolished
Personal details
Born 15 December 1713 (1713-12-15)
Died 2 February 1802 (1802-02-03) (aged 88)
Nationality British

Welbore Ellis, 1st Baron Mendip PC FRS (15 December 1713 – 2 February 1802) was a British statesman. He held a number of political offices, including briefly serving as Secretary for the Colonies in 1782 during the American War of Independence.


Ellis was the second but only surviving son of the Most Reverend Welbore Ellis, Bishop of Kildare and Bishop of Meath.

Political career

In 1741, he was elected Member of Parliament (MP) for Cricklade, then moved to Weymouth and Melcombe Regis (17471761), Aylesbury (17611768), Petersfield (17681774), Weymouth and Melcombe Regis (17741790) and Petersfield (17911794). In 1762, he succeeded Charles Townshend as Secretary at War, and in 1763, he proposed the appropriation of twenty army regiments to the colonies of America. In Parliament, with many others, he opposed the reception of papers from the American Continental Congress. He became Treasurer of the Navy on 1777, then succeeded to the Colonial Secretaryship in 1782, which he held for a matter of months, before the American colonies were lost. In 1784, he became the longest-serving member of the House of Commons (having served for 34 years noncontinuously), becoming the honorary Father of the House. He was created Baron Mendip, of Mendip in the County of Somerset, in 1794 in recognition of his governmental service. The peerage was created with remainder to the three eldest sons of his sister Anne by her husband Henry Agar, of Gowran and Gowran Castle.

Personal life

Ellis died childless in February 1802, aged 88, and was succeeded in the barony according to the special remainder by his great-nephew, Henry Welbore Agar, 2nd Viscount Clifden, who assumed the surname of Ellis two years later.

See also


Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Sir Thomas Reade, Bt
Charles Gore
Member of Parliament for Cricklade
With: Sir Thomas Reade, Bt
Succeeded by
John Gore
William Rawlinson Earle
Preceded by
John Tucker
Joseph Damer
John Raymond
James Steuart
Member of Parliament for Weymouth
and Melcombe Regis

With: Richard Plumer 174751
George Dodington 174754
Edward Hungate Beaghan 174754
Lord George Augustus Cavendish 175154
Lord John Cavendish 175461
George Bubb Dodington 175461
John Tucker 175461
Succeeded by
John Tucker
Sir Francis Dashwood, Bt
John Olmius
Richard Glover
Preceded by
John Willes
John Wilkes
Member of Parliament for Aylesbury
With: John Wilkes 176164
Anthony Bacon 176468
Succeeded by
Anthony Bacon
John Durand
Preceded by
John Jolliffe
Richard Croftes
Member of Parliament for Petersfield
With: William Joliffe
Succeeded by
William Joliffe
Sir Abraham Hume, Bt
Preceded by
John Tucker
The Lord Waltham
Sir Charles Davers, Bt
Jeremiah Dyson
Member of Parliament for Weymouth
and Melcombe Regis

With: John Tucker 177478
William Chaffin Grove 177481
John Purling 177490
Gabriel Steward 177880, 178016 & 178890
Warren Lisle 1780
William Richard Rumbold 178184
Sir Thomas Rumbold, Bt 178490
George Jackson 178688
Succeeded by
Sir James Murray Pulteney
Richard Bempde Johnstone
Andrew Stuart
Thomas Jones
Preceded by
William Joliffe
Marquess of Titchfield
Member of Parliament for Petersfield
With: William Joliffe
Succeeded by
William Joliffe
Charles Greville
Political offices
Preceded by
Charles Townshend
Secretary at War
Succeeded by
The Viscount Barrington
Preceded by
Sir Gilbert Elliot, Bt
Treasurer of the Navy
Succeeded by
Isaac Barré
Preceded by
The Lord George Germain
Secretary of State for the Colonies
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Charles Frederick
Father of the House
Succeeded by
William Drake
Peerage of Great Britain
Preceded by
(new creation)
Baron Mendip
Succeeded by
Henry Welbore Ellis
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