People in William’s life M-Z

[These two pages are growing slowly: see Page History below.]


  • Mills. Thomas Mills: William’s solicitor in Paris in 1831.
  • Moore. William Moore (?1728-99): rector of Inwardleigh, North Lew and Spreyton but lived at South Tawton (all 4 places in Devon); the tutor who came upon William and William Beckford having sex together in 1784.
    • [information on William Moore’s children to be added: natural child by Elizabeth Jones of Okehampton, TNA 1232A/PO 152; Francis, CCEd Person ID: 36829; William, CCEd Person ID: 108221; David; Abraham MP, friend of William Gifford; Thomas; Rebecca Cann [banker: see Margaret Dawes & Nesta Selwyn, Women Who Made Money, 2010, pp. 130-33]; Mary Ponsford; Grace; Elizabeth;]
  • Morland. Charles Morland (1774-1828): see Sisters (Caroline). William Morland (1739-1815): banker, MP and one of William’s trustees in 1808; he seems to have no connection with the Morland family of Court Lodge.
  • Morton. Joseph Farington’s diary for 17 May 1811 records a conversation with ‘Dr. Fisher of Exeter, Brother to the Bishop of Salisbury’: ‘He told me Mr. Morton of Exeter, an excellent magistrate, was alone the person who by His determined conduct brought the proceedings against Lord Courtney to a point which obliged Him to secure His safety by leaving the Kingdom. Mr. Morton had solicited other magistrates to concur with Him in His exertion for this purpose but they on one pretence or other declined it. He took the Depositions against His Lordship, one of them was to a fact, — the other to an attempt’. (ed. James Greig, volume 6 page 273).’ There may be a mistranscription or some misunderstanding here – I have not yet been able to identify this ‘Mr. Morton’ but TNA database now includes two items relating to wills which may be relevant: William Morton of Saint Thomas, Exeter (1816); William Morton of Exeter (1832). The Monthly Magazine reports the death of ‘Mr. William Morton, of Alphington-street’ in its issue dated 1 August 1816. In Exeter Memories David Cornforth mentions a William Morton as landlord of The Round-Tree Inn in 1816 and 1822, with his widow Mary Morton having taken on the business by 1839 until 1850 or later; she is also listed in White’s 1850 History, gazetteer, and directory of Devonshire, p.163.
  • Mountnorris. See Sisters (Anne).
  • Palmer. See Uncles, aunts and cousins (Sarah).
  • Perot. John Victor Perot: one of William’s servants in France.
  • Pethybridge. Richard Pethybridge: William’s butler in France; witnessed the first codicil to William’s English will.
  • Pidsley. John Pidsley (1763-1840): Exeter attorney, by December 1828 he had been William’s steward at Powderham for ‘upwards of twenty years’.
  • Robinson. Anne Robinson: born in Vienna, she was closely related to the Parkers at Saltram as well as to the Bastards at Kitley and passed a good part of her life in Devon. Her correspondence contains only a handful of comments on Powderham and the Courtenay family but they are made from a significant viewpoint. She died in 1828 at her London home in Park Street, Grosvenor Square.
  • Rosslyn. See Uncles, aunts and cousins (Charlotte).

Longways Dance null by Thomas Rowlandson 1756-1827


  • Saurez. Theodore de Saurez: a legatee in William’s English will (section 4 and codicil 4); ‘son of the Marquis de Saurez’.
  • Smith. Thomas Smith (1754-1831): MP for West Looe 1802-03; married Jane Addison who survived him; died 24 April 1831 in London (77 Russell-square). His sister Margaret married Alexander Hoskins in 1798 (see Hoskins above); his sister Agnes (-1840) married David Murray of Jamaica (-1822).
  • Somerset. See Sisters (Elizabeth and Louisa). Georgiana: (1) a daughter of William’s sister Elizabeth; (2) a daughter of William’s sister Louisa.
  • Taylor. Thomas Taylor (?1731-1805) of Denbury and West Ogwell in Devon, a friend of William’s father. Beckford mentions ‘old Taylor’ in letters to Samuel Henley and some writers on Beckford have mistakenly assumed that Taylor was William’s tutor at the time of the 1784 scandal (see Moore above).
  • Thackeray. Thomas James Thackeray: soldier, playwight & agriculturist; a second cousin of the writer William Makepeace Thackeray; witnessed William’s English will in Paris, May 1831.
  • Thynne. See Sisters (Harriet).
  • Tod. George Tod: published his design for a conservatory at Powderham in 1806.
  • Valentia. See Sisters (Anne).
  • Vaughan. See Sisters (Lucy).
  • Wedderburn. See Uncles, aunts and cousins (Charlotte).
  • Wrottesley. See Uncles, aunts and cousins (Frances). Henry Wrottesley: a cousin; lawyer, one of the trustees for William’s estates in 1811.

Longways Dance null by Thomas Rowlandson 1756-1827


George Cruikshank: Inconveniences of a Crowded Drawing Room, 1818.

Thomas Rowlandson: Longways Dance (2).

Page history

  • 2020 June 1: People in William’s life divided into two parts (A-L, M-Z).
  • 2020 June 19: entry for Perot added with redirections added for Morland, Mountnorris, Palmer, Rosslyn, Somerset, Thynne, Valentia, Vaughan, Wedderburn, Wrottesley.
  • 2020 November 24: new entries for William Morland and John Pidsley.

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