John Fane, 10th Earl of Westmorland

John Fane, 10th Earl of Westmorland, KG, PC (1 June 1759 – 15 December 1841), styled Lord Burghersh between 1771 and 1774, was a British Tory politician of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, who served in most of the cabinets of the period, primarily as Lord Privy Seal.

The Earl of Westmorland
full length portrait, oil-on-canvas
Lord Westmorland in the parliamentary robes of an earl, by Thomas Lawrence c. 1806.
Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
In office
MonarchGeorge III
Prime MinisterWilliam Pitt the Younger
Preceded byThe Marquess of Buckingham
Succeeded byThe Earl FitzWilliam
Lord Privy Seal
In office
14 February 1798 – 5 February 1806
MonarchGeorge III
Prime MinisterPitt, Addington
Preceded byThe Earl of Chatham
Succeeded byThe Viscount Sidmouth
In office
25 March 1807 – 30 April 1827
MonarchsGeorge III, George IV
Prime MinisterPortland, Perceval, Liverpool
Preceded byThe Lord Holland
Succeeded byThe Duke of Portland
Personal details
Born(1759-06-01)1 June 1759
Died15 December 1841(1841-12-15) (aged 82)
Political partyTory
  • (m. 1782; died 1793)
  • Jane Saunders
    (m. 1800)


Westmorland was the son of John Fane, 9th Earl of Westmorland, and Augusta, daughter of Lord Montague Bertie. He succeeded in the earldom on the death of his father in 1774.[1]

Political careerEdit

In 1789 Westmorland was appointed Joint Postmaster General by William Pitt the Younger[1] and sworn of the Privy Council.[2] Already the same year he was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland by Pitt, a post he held until 1794. On 18 February 1793, he was appointed a deputy lieutenant of Northamptonshire.[3] From 1795 to 1798 he was Master of the Horse under Pitt. The latter year Pitt made him Lord Privy Seal, a position he would hold under five prime Ministers (Pitt, Addington, Pitt again, Portland, Perceval and Liverpool) for the next 35 years, except between 1806 and 1807 when Lord Grenville was in office.[1]

Westmorland raised a Northamptonshire volunteer cavalry regiment in 1797, and was appointed its colonel on 20 April 1797.[4] He was later Lord Lieutenant of Northamptonshire between 1828 and 1841.[1] He was made a Knight of the Garter in 1793.[5]


Detail of a mezzotint portrait by John Jones (circa 1745–1797) after George Romney of John Fane, 10th Earl of Westmorland, 1796.

Lord Westmorland married Sarah Anne Child (28 August 1764 – 9 November 1793), the only daughter and heiress of wealthy banker, Robert Child, against her father's wishes, at Gretna Green on 20 May 1782.[1] Child consequently cut his daughter and her sons and their descendants out of his will, and made his daughter's daughters his heirs to prevent the Fanes from benefitting from this elopement. Their eldest daughter, Lady Sarah Sophia Fane (1785–1867), having thus been made testamentary heiress of her maternal grandfather, married George Child-Villiers, 5th Earl of Jersey, her husband assuming the additional surname of Child.[citation needed]

The Earl and Countess of Westmorland had one son and four daughters:

The Countess of Westmorland died relatively young in 1793, aged only 29, from undisclosed causes. Lord Westmorland married secondly Jane, daughter of Richard Huck-Saunders, in 1800.[1] After some years of marriage, they later separated and she lived at Brympton d'Evercy.[citation needed] By his second wife, he had three sons and two daughters, of whom only the eldest child Lady Georgiana Fane outlived both parents and inherited the Brympton estate.

  • Lady (Cicely Jane) Georgina Fane (25 January 1801 – 1875), died unmarried, leaving Brympton d'Evercy to her nephew Spencer Ponsonby-Fane
  • Hon. Charles Saunders John Fane (1802–1810)
  • Hon. Col. Henry Sutton Fane (1804–1857), died unmarried.
  • Hon. Montagu Augustus Villiers Fane (1805–1857), died unmarried.
  • Lady Evelina Fane (1807–1808)

Lord Westmorland died in December 1841, aged 82, and was succeeded in the earldom by his only son from his first marriage, John. The Countess of Westmorland died in March 1857.[1]


Coat of arms of John Fane, 10th Earl of Westmorland
Out of a Ducal Coronet Or, a Bull's Head of Brindled colour, armed Or, charged on the neck with a Rose Gules.
Quarterly, 1st and 4th, Azure three dexter gauntlets, backs afrontée or (for Fane); 2nd and 3rd, Argent three battering rams, barways in pale or, headed and garnished azure (for Bertie)
Dexter: a Griffin per fess Argent and Or, collared and line reflexed over the back Sable. Sinister: a Pied or Brindled Bull, collared and line terminating in a Ring and three Staples Or.
Ne Vile Fano ("Disgrace Not The Altar"; Fane), Ne Vile Velis ("Form no mean wish"; Neville)


  1. ^ a b c d e f g John Fane, 10th Earl of Westmorland
  2. ^ "No. 13140". The London Gazette. 13 October 1789. p. 653.
  3. ^ "No. 13708". The London Gazette. 27 September 1794. p. 987.
  4. ^ "No. 14012". The London Gazette. 23 May 1797. p. 472.
  5. ^ "No. 13537". The London Gazette. 11 June 1793. p. 490.
  6. ^ The Register of Births and Baptisms in the Parish of St James within the Liberty of Westminster. 1761-1786. 9 March 1784.
Political offices
Preceded by Postmaster General
With: The Lord Walsingham
Succeeded by
Preceded by Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
Succeeded by
Preceded by Master of the Horse
Succeeded by
Preceded by Lord Privy Seal
Succeeded by
Preceded by Lord Privy Seal
Succeeded by
Honorary titles
Preceded by Lord Lieutenant of Northamptonshire
Succeeded by
Peerage of England
Preceded by Earl of Westmorland
Succeeded by