COOPER, Robert Bransby (1762-1845), of Furney Hill, Dursley, Glos.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1818 - 1830

Family and Education

b. 21 Feb. 1762, 1st s. of Rev. Samuel Cooper, rector of Morley and Yelverton, Norf. by Maria, da. and h. of James Bransby of Shottisham, Norf. educ. at home;1 Trinity Coll. Camb. 1778; L. Inn 1780. m. 6 May 1784, Anne, da. and h. of William Purnell of Dursley, 2s. 3da. suc. fa. 1800.

Offices Held

Capt. Dursley vol. cav. 1800, 1803.


Cooper belonged to an old Norfolk family. His father published poetry, sermons and turgid comments on Priestley’s letters to Burke on civil and ecclesiastical government (1791); his mother was a writer of epistolary novels and children’s books; and he himself produced theological treatises in his later years. His youngest brother Astley Paston Cooper became the most eminent surgeon of his day, was created a baronet in 1821 and appointed surgeon to the King in 1828.

Cooper’s marriage gave him a stake in Gloucestershire, where he was an active magistrate. On a vacancy for Gloucester in 1816 he stood as the candidate for the Blues, a ministerialist anti-corporation party, but was beaten by a Whig. He tried again at the general election of 1818, when his addresses were issued, as they were in 1816, from Matson House, near Gloucester, the former Selwyn property, which he was presumably renting from the current owner John Thomas Townshend*, 2nd Viscount Sydney.2 In an expensive contest with two Whigs he finished second.

He voted against government on the question of state lotteries, 4 May, but with them in the divisions on Tierney’s censure motion, 18 May, the foreign enlistment bill, 10 June, and the blasphemous libels bill, 23 Dec. 1819. He is not known to have spoken in the House before 1820. He died 10 May 1845.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: M. J. Williams


  • 1. B. B. Cooper, Sir Astley Cooper, i. 23.
  • 2. The Late Elections (1818), 126-8.