Thomas Fane, 8th Earl of Westmorland

Thomas Fane, 8th Earl of Westmorland (March 1701 – 25 November 1771), MP for Lyme Regis and a lord commissioner of trade. Thomas Fane was the second son of Henry Fane of Brympton d'Evercy in Somerset and Anne sister and coheir of John Scrope, children of Thomas Scrope, a Bristol merchant. Anne was a granddaughter of Colonel Adrian Scrope the regicide. Thomas Fane inherited John Scrope's fortune and mansion in Bristol, and from him Colonel Adrian Scrope's property in Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

Thomas Fane married Elizabeth Swymmer, the daughter of a Bristol merchant and member of the slave trade, William Swymmer. In 1762 he inherited the title of Earl of Westmoreland from John Fane, 7th Earl of Westmorland, his father's second-cousin, who had died without issue.[1] The couple had two sons and two daughters:[2]

His daughter Mary married Charles Blair, a wealthy owner of plantations in Jamaica, at St James Westminster in 1762.[3] Charles Blair was the great-great grandfather of Eric Blair, who wrote under the pen name George Orwell.[4]

Mr Fane

In 1761 Joshua Reynolds painted his full length portrait entitled Mr Fane. Reynolds was paid 80 guineas for the work which depicted the powder-wigged subject walking through a wooded landscape wearing rose-coloured velvet attire. In May 1903 the portrait was sold to Martin Colnaghi for 2,100 guineas.[5]


  1. ^ John Fane, 7th Earl of Westmorland, died without issue, in 1762, when the barony of Le Despencer, being a barony in fee, devolved upon his nephew Sir Francis Dashwood, bart.; but the earldom of Westmorland went to the male heir, Thomas Fane, of Bristol, merchant (and subject of this article), son of Henry Fane, (d. 1726,) attorney at law, grandson of Sir Francis Fane, K.B. and great grandson of Sir Francis Fane of Fulbeck, co. Lincoln, K.B. the third son of Francis Fane, 1st Earl of Westmorland.(Debrett 1820, 160)
  2. ^ Debrett 1820, p. 161
  3. ^ St James Westminster registers
  4. ^ Peter Stansky, William Abrahams, William Miller Abrahams The Unknown Orwell and Orwell: The Transformation Stanford University Press, 1994 ISBN 0804723427
  5. ^ The Times Sale Of The Vaile And Other Pictures 25 May 1903


  • Debrett, John, ed (1820). Debrett's Correct Peerage of England, Scotland, and Ireland. 1 (13 ed.). London: Printed G. Woodall, Angel Court, Skinner Street. 
  • This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: "Debrett's Correct Peerage of England, Scotland, and Ireland" by John Debrett
Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
John Scrope
Robert Henley
Member of Parliament for Lyme Regis
with Robert Henley 1753–1754
Francis Fane 1754–1757
Henry Fane 1757–1762

Succeeded by
Henry Fane
Lord Burghersh
Peerage of England
Preceded by
John Fane
Earl of Westmorland
Succeeded by
John Fane

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