PRICE, ROBERT (1655 - 1733), judge

Name: Robert Price
Date of birth: 1655
Date of death: 1733
Spouse: Lucy Price (née Rodd)
Child: Uvedale Tomkins Price
Parent: Margaret Price (née Wynne)
Parent: Thomas Price
Gender: Male
Occupation: judge
Area of activity: Law
Author: William Llewelyn Davies

Born 14 January 1655, second son of Thomas Price, Giler, Cerrigydrudion, by his wife Margaret, daughter and heiress of Thomas Wynne of Bwlchybeudy in the same parish. From Ruthin school he went to S. John's College, Cambridge, 28 March 1672; he left without graduating, was admitted to Lincoln's Inn, 8 May 1673, and qualified as a barrister in July 1679.

A useful (and quite interesting) biography, The Life of Robert Price … one of the Justices of His Majesty's Court of Common-Pleas, was published by E. Curll in London, 1734, and as Price figures also in the D.N.B., this notice will be brief. His legal career may be said to begin when he became attorney-general for South Wales, 1682. He was appointed recorder of Radnor in 1683 and he held various posts until he became judge of the Brecknock circuit in 1700. He was appointed a baron of the Exchequer, 24 June 1702, and became one of the judges of the Court of Common Pleas, 16 October 1726. Before this he had won renown in Parliament - he sat for Weobley in several Parliaments - particularly when in 1695-6, he opposed, successfully, the grant which William III proposed to make, to his Dutch favourite, Hans William Bentinck, who had been created earl of Portland, of the lordships of Denbigh, Bromfield, and Yale; by virtue of his strong opposition to this obnoxious grant Price won for himself the name of ' the patriot of his native country.' After the death of the king the two speeches which Price had delivered were published (1702) as Gloria Cambriae; or the Speech of a Bold Briton in Parliament against a Dutch Prince of Wales (for text, see Somers, Collection of Tracts, 1814, xi, 387-93).

Price was friendly with Robert Harley (earl of Oxford; for references to him in this connection and to letters which he wrote to Harley, see Hist. MSS. Comm., Rep. on the MSS. of the Duke of Portland, iv-vi.

He married, 23 September 1679, Lucy, eldest daughter of Robert Rodd, Foxley, Herefordshire; they had three children, the heir being Uvedale Tomkyns Price. Full details of his will are given by Curll. He became wealthy and left much landed property in Wales and England. He built and endowed an almshouse for six poor persons in the parish of Cerrigydrudion. He died at Kensington, 2 February 1733, and was buried at Yazzor, Herefordshire.


Published date: 1959

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