TONSON, Richard (d.1772), of Water Oakley, nr. Windsor, Berks.

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



1747 - 1754
18 May 1768 - 9 Oct. 1772

Family and Education

2nd s. of Jacob Tonson, publisher, by a da. of Samuel Hoole of London, bookseller. suc. bro. Jacob 1767. unm.

Offices Held


The great-nephew of Jacob Tonson, Dryden’s publisher and secretary of the Kit-Cat Club, Tonson was the last of a family of wealthy booksellers. He himself was merely a sleeping partner in the business, living the life of a country gentleman at his Berkshire seat, which had come to him from his father and to which he added a gallery for Kit-Cat portraits inherited from his elder brother.1 Brought in for Wallingford by Chauncy Townsend in 1747, he was classed as a government supporter. His recorded political activities are nil. He did not stand again till 1768, dying 9 Oct. 1772.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Nichols, Lit. Anecs. i. 292-9.