John Hobhouse, 1st Baron Broughton

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The Right Honourable
The Lord Broughton
John Cam Hobhouse.jpg
Lord Broughton, from a miniature by Sir William Newton, R. A.
President of the Board of Control
In office
23 April 1835 – 30 August 1841
Monarch William IV
Queen Victoria
Prime Minister The Viscount Melbourne
Preceded by The Lord Ellenborough
Succeeded by The Lord Ellenborough
In office
8 July 1846 – 5 February 1852
Monarch Queen Victoria
Prime Minister Lord John Russell
Preceded by The Earl of Ripon
Succeeded by Hon. Fox Maule
Personal details
Born (1786-06-27)27 June 1786
Redland, near Bristol
Died 3 June 1869(1869-06-03) (aged 82)
Berkeley Square, London
Nationality British
Political party Whig
Spouse(s) Lady Julia Hay (d. 1835)
Alma mater Trinity College, Cambridge
The tomb of John Cam Hobhouse, Kensal Green Cemetery, London

John Cam Hobhouse, 1st Baron Broughton GCB PC FRS (27 June 1786 – 3 June 1869), known as Sir John Hobhouse, Bt, from 1831 to 1851, was a British politician and diarist.

Background and education

Born at Redland near Bristol, Broughton was the eldest son of Sir Benjamin Hobhouse, 1st Baronet, and Charlotte, daughter of Samuel Cam.[1] He was educated at Westminster School and at Trinity College, Cambridge.[1][2] At Trinity College Hobhouse became friends with Lord Byron, and accompanied him in his journeys in the Peninsula, Greece and Turkey, and acted as his "best man". In 1816 he was with Byron after his separation from his wife, and contributed notes to the fourth canto of Childe Harold, which was dedicated to him.

Political career

On his return he threw himself into politics with great energy as an advanced Radical, and wrote various pamphlets, for one of which he was in 1819 imprisoned in Newgate. Also in that year, he spoke the following words: "I am a man chosen for the people, by the people; and, if elected, I will do no other business than that of the people."[3] In 1820, he entered Parliament, sitting for Westminster.

Hobhouse is credited with the invention of the phrase His Majesty's (Loyal) Opposition made in 1826 during a speech in the House of Commons.[4] After the Whigs gained power in 1830 he served under Lord Grey as Secretary at War between 1832 and 1833, as Chief Secretary for Ireland in 1833 and as First Commissioner of Woods and Forests in 1834. He was later President of the Board of Control under Lord Melbourne between 1835 and 1841 and under Lord John Russell between 1846 and 1852.[1] He was sworn of the Privy Council in 1832[5] and raised to the peerage as Baron Broughton, of Broughton-de-Gyfford in the County of Wiltshire, in 1851.[6] In 1852 he was also made a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath (GCB).[7]


He published Journey through Albania (1813), Historical Illustrations of the Fourth Canto of Childe Harold (1818), and Recollections of a Long Life (1865), for private circulation, and he left in MS. Diaries, Correspondence, and Memoranda, etc., not to be opened till 1900, extracts from which were published by his daughter, Lady Dorchester, also under the title of Recollections from a Long Life (1909).


Lord Broughton married Lady Julia, daughter of George Hay, 7th Marquess of Tweeddale, in 1828. They had three daughters. Lady Julia died from tuberculosis in April 1835. Lord Broughton survived her by over 30 years and died in June 1869, aged 82.[1] He is buried at Kensal Green Cemetery, London. The large and distinctive monument lies on the main pathway to the central chapel.

His barony died with him, as he had no male heirs, whilst the baronetcy created for his father passed to Broughton's nephew, Charles.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3
  2. "Hobhouse, John Cam (HBHS803JC)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Broughton, John and Burdett, Francis. An Authentic Narrative of the Events of the Westminster Election, which Commenced on Saturday, February 13th, and Closed on Wednesday, March 3d, 1819 page 105 (Published by R. Stodart, 1819).
  4. [1]
  5. The London Gazette: no. 18901. p. 259. 7 February 1832.
  6. The London Gazette: no. 21185. p. 487. 25 February 1851.
  7. The London Gazette: no. 21294. p. 525. 24 February 1852.


External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Hon. George Lamb
Sir Francis Burdett, Bt
Member of Parliament for Westminster
With: Sir Francis Burdett, Bt
Succeeded by
George de Lacy Evans
Sir Francis Burdett, Bt
Preceded by
Viscount Duncannon
Ronald Craufurd Ferguson
Member of Parliament for Nottingham
1834 – 1847
With: Ronald Craufurd Ferguson to 1841
John Walter 1841
George Larpent 1841–1842
John Walter 1842–1843
Thomas Gisborne the Younger 1843–1847
Succeeded by
John Walter
Feargus Edward O'Connor
Preceded by
John Bagshaw
John Attwood
Member of Parliament for Harwich
With: John Bagshaw
Succeeded by
John Bagshaw
Henry Thoby Prinsep
Political offices
Preceded by
Sir Henry Parnell, Bt
Secretary at War
Succeeded by
Edward Ellice
Preceded by
Hon. Edward Smith-Stanley
Chief Secretary for Ireland
Succeeded by
Edward Littleton
Preceded by
Viscount Duncannon
First Commissioner of Woods and Forests
Succeeded by
Lord Granville Somerset
Preceded by
The Lord Ellenborough
President of the Board of Control
Succeeded by
The Lord Ellenborough
Preceded by
The Earl of Ripon
President of the Board of Control
Succeeded by
Hon. Fox Maule
Peerage of the United Kingdom
New creation Baron Broughton
Baronetage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Benjamin Hobhouse
(of Westbury)
Succeeded by
Charles Hobhouse