POLE, Sir William, 4th Bt. (1678-1741), of Colcombe Castle, nr. Colyton and Shute, nr. Honiton, Devon.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1715-1754, ed. R. Sedgwick, 1970
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1701 - 1702
17 Jan. 1704 - 1708
1708 - 1710
1710 - June 1712
1713 - 1715
17 Mar. 1716 - 1727
15 Mar. 1731 - 1734

Family and Education

bap. 17 Aug. 1678, 1st s. of Sir John Pole, 3rd Bt. M.P., mayor of Honiton 1685, by Anne, da. of Sir William Morice, M.P., of Werrington, Devon, sis. of Sir William Morice, 1st Bt., M.P. educ. New Coll. Oxf. 1696. m. by 1733, for ‘many years’,1 Elizabeth, da. of Robert Warry of Shute, Devon, 1s. 1da. suc. fa. 13 Mar. 1708.

Offices Held

Master of the Household 1712-14.


Pole was descended from an old Honiton family, who purchased Colcombe from the Courtenays in the early sixteenth century; leased Shute, subsequently the family seat, in the time of Elizabeth;2 were largely instrumental in securing the re-enfranchisement of Honiton in 1640; and represented the borough at intervals for almost 100 years.3 Returned for it as a Tory at a by-election in 1716, he voted against the Administration in all the three chief divisions of this Parliament. His name was sent to the Pretender in 1721 as a probable supporter in the event of a rising.4 Re-elected after a contest in 1722, when he was also returned for Newport, he was unsuccessful at the poll in 1727, but recovered his seat on petition. In his will, drafted in 1733, he made it his ‘earnest request and recommendation’ to his son that he ‘will never stand as a candidate or if chosen will never be prevailed upon to represent or serve in Parliament for the borough of Honiton.’5 He did not stand again, dying of ‘gout in his stomach’, 31 Dec. 1741.6

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754

Author: Shirley Matthews


  • 1. PCC 165 Trenley.
  • 2. Lysons, Devon, i. pp. cix-cx; ii. 131; A. J. Jewers, ‘The Churches of Colyton and Shute’, Dev. Assoc. Trans. xxxiii. 714; Hoskins, Devon, 374, 476.
  • 3. A. Farquharson, Hist. Honiton, 37.
  • 4. Stuart mss 65/16.
  • 5. PCC 165 Trenley.
  • 6. M. F. Bridie, Story of Shute, 138.