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Edward Portman, 1st Viscount Portman

Edward Berkeley Portman, 1st Viscount Portman (9 July 1799 – 19 November 1888), was a British Liberal politician.

He was an active supporter of the Royal Agricultural Society of England from its commencement in 1838, and served as president in 1846, 1856, and 1862. He was a considerable breeder of Devon cattle and of improved Alderney cows.[1]


Background and educationEdit

Portman was born on 9 July 1799 to Edward Portman, of Bryanston and Orchard Portman in Dorset , and his first wife Lucy, elder daughter of Reverend Thomas Whitby of Cresswell Hall, Staffordshire.[1] Portman was educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford. At Christ Church, he graduated with first-class honours, B.A. 1821, M.A. 1826.[1]

Political careerEdit

In 1823 Portman was elected to Parliament as a Liberal for Dorsetshire,[1] a seat he held until 1832, and then represented the newly created constituency of Marylebone from 12 December 1832 to March 1833.[1] On 27 January 1837 Portman was raised to the peerage as Baron Portman of Orchard Portman, and became an active member of the House of Lords.[1] Lord Portman served as Lord Lieutenant of Somerset from 22 May 1839 to June 1864. He was also a councillor and commissioner of the Duchy of Cornwall (starting 19 August 1840), a councillor of Duchy of Lancaster (on 13 February 1847) and as Lord Warden of the Stannaries from 20 January 1865 till his death. On 28 March 1873 he was further honoured when he was created Viscount Portman of Bryanston. Lord Portman died on 19 November 1888, aged 89, in Bryanston[1] and was succeeded in the barony and viscountcy by his eldest son Henry Berkeley Portman.[1] Another son, Edwin Berkeley Portman, became Member of Parliament for North Devon.


His father died in 1823.[1] He was a descendant of Sir William Portman, Lord Chief Justice of England between 1555 and 1557.[citation needed] Lord Portman married Lady Emma Lascelles, third daughter of Henry Lascelles, 2nd Earl of Harewood, on 16 June 1827. They had six children, two daughters and four sons, William Henry Berkeley, Edwin Berkeley, barrister-at-law; Maurice Berkeley, a member of the Canadian parliament; Walter Berkeley, rector of Corton-Denham, Somerset. Emma died on 8 February 1865.[1]


  • Lee, Sidney, ed. (1896). "Portman, Edward Berkeley" . Dictionary of National Biography. 46. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  • Kidd, Charles, Williamson, David (editors). Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage (1990 edition). New York: St Martin's Press, 1990,[page needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j   Boase, George Clement (1885–1900). "Portman, Edward Berkeley". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co.

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