Sir William Fitzherbert 1st Bart.

27th May 1748 - 30th Jul 1791


Son of William and Mary Fitzherbert of Tissington Hall. He attended Westminster School and St John's College, Cambridge, graduating M.A. in 1770. He toured Europe with his neighbour William Cavendish, later fifth Duke of Devonshire, when they were both about twenty.
Practised as a barrister for 7 years though subsequently based at his seat in Derbyshire and ‘took a very active and useful share in the public business of that county as one of its Magistrates, and as Recorder of the borough of Derby’. (Collins’s Peerage of England, p. 162.)

Served as Gentleman Usher to King George III.

On 14 October 1777 he married Sarah Perrin at St George's, Bloomsbury Square, London and through her reportedly inherited five plantations in Jamaica [in fact,t these estates appear to have passed to his son Sir Henry Fitzherbert, 3rd bart.]: Blue Mountain, Forest, Grange Hill and Vere (all sugar plantations) and the coffee plantation of Retrieve Mountain. He also owned Turner's Hall, Barbados. Sarah Perrin died in London and was buried at Tissington, 1795.

Fitzherbert became a baronet on 22 January 1784 and retired to the family seat of Tissington Hall. On his death in 1791 he was buried at Tissington and was succeeded by Anthony Perrin Fitzherbert his son with Sarah, his wife. His younger brother Alleyne FitzHerbert was a distinguished diplomat who became a baron in 1791. Anthony Fitzherbert, the second Baronet, died suddenly on 2 April 1798 aged 19. He was succeeded by Henry, his brother, the third son of the first Baronet.

Children of William and Sarah Fitzherbert:
Sir Anthony Perrin Fitzherbert, 2nd Bt. (born St George, Bloomsbury, London, 21 July 1779; died suddenly of consumption, Bristol, 2 April 1798.)
George (25 November 1780-died as an infant); Sir Henry, 3rd Bt., 4 August 1783-1858; q.v.); Charles, twin brother of Henry, died as an infant; Charlotte (20 June 1782; died the same year).

For the Fitzherbert family as art collectors see Christie's website, accessed 8 September 2015.

The portrait of Fitzherbert is by Pompeo Batoni, c.1768. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons.

Justin Roberts records a visit by William Fitzherbert 'for the first time' in 1771.


Collins’s Peerage of England; Genealogical, Biographical and Historical. Greatly Augmented, and Continued to the Present Time by Sir Egerton Brydges (9 volumes, London 1812), IX, p. 162; Wikipedia: Sir William Fitzherbert.

Justin Roberts, 'The "Better Sort" and the "Poorer Sort: wealth inequalities, family formation and the economy of energy on British Caribbean sugar plantations, 1750-1800', Slavery & Abolition 35:3 (September 2014) pp, 458-473 at p. 465.

Further Information

Sarah Perrin
Westminster School
St John's College, Cambridge (MA, 1770)
Lawyer and plantation owner

Associated Estates (1)

The dates listed below have different categories as denoted by the letters in the brackets following each date. Here is a key to explain those letter codes:

  • SD - Association Start Date
  • SY - Association Start Year
  • EA - Earliest Known Association
  • ED - Association End Date
  • EY - Association End Year
  • LA - Latest Known Association
1768 [EA] - 1791 [LA] → Owner

Legacies Summary

Cultural (1)

Portrait of William Fitzherbert by Pompeo Batoni, c.1768. <a href=""... 
notes →

Relationships (3)

Father → Son
Father → Son

Addresses (1)

Tissington Hall, Derbyshire, East Midlands, England