Tuesday, 9 December 2008
"All men have their price"
This quote is from Sir Robert Walpole, the first Prime Minister of England. Actually the way it is normally quoted gives the wrong sense of his words. He was overheard saying "All these men have their price - except the little Cornish baronet". He was referring to Sir John St Aubyn (1699 (poss 1702) - 1744, the third Baronet of Clowance. The St Aubyn family represented various Cornish constitutencies over the centuries. When Walpole fell from power the House of Commons set up a committee to inquire into Walpole's ministry, but no substantial evidence of wrongdoing or corruption was discovered. St Aubyn was elected to that Select Committee by unanimous agreement of the whole House of Commons.
I discovered all this while researching Clowance, where we will soon be spending a few days holiday.
More on St John St Aubyn -