Cutis, John Lord

, a brave officer in king William’s wars, was a younger son of Richard Cutts, esq. of an ancient and distinguished family, settled about the time of Henry VI. at Matching in Essex, where they had considerable property. His father removed to Childerley in Cambridgeshire, to take possession of a good estate given him by sir John Cutts, bart. who died without issue. This, estate, after the decease of an elder brother, devolved on John; who sold it, to pay incumbrances, to equip himself as a soldier, and to enable himself to travel. After an academical education at Cambridge, he entered early into the service of the duke of Monmouth, and afterwards was aid-de-camp to the duke of Lorrain in Hungary, and signalized himself in a very extraordinary manner at the taking of Buda by the imperialists in 1686; which important place had been for nearly a century and a half in the hands of the Turks. Mr. Addison, in a Latin poem, not unworthy of the Augustan age, plainly hints at Mr. Cutts’ s distinguished bravery at that siege. He was afterwards colonel of a regiment in Holland under the States, and accompanied king William to England, who “being graciously pleased to confer a mark of his royal favour upon colonel John Cutts, for his faithful services, and zealous affection to his royal person and government, thought fit to create him a baron of the kingdom of Ireland, by the style and title of Baron Cutts of Gowran in the said | kingdom, December 6, 1690.” He was appointed governor of the Isle of Wight, April 14, 1693 made a major-general and, when the assassination-project was discovered, 1695-6, was captain of the king’s guard. He was twice married first to Elizabeth, daughter of George Clark of London, merchant (relict of John Morley, of Glynd, in Sussex, and after, of John Trevor, esq. eldest brother to the first lord Trevor). This lady died in Feb. 1692. His second wife, an amiable young woman, was educated under the care of her grandmother, the lady Pickering, of Cambridgeshire. She was brought to bed of a son, September 1, 1697, and died in a few days after, aged only 18 years and as many days. Her character has been admirably delineated by bishop Atterbury, in the dedication to a sermon he preached on occasion of her death.

In 1695, and the three following parliaments, lord Cutts was regularly elected one of the representatives both for the county of Cambridge, and for the borough of Newport in the Isle of Wight; but made his election for the former. In two parliaments which followed (1702 and 1705) he represented Newport. In 1698 he was complimented by Mr. John Hopkins, as one to whom “a double crown was due,” as a hero and as a poet. In 1699, he is thus introduced in a compliment to king William on his conquests:

"The warlike Cutts the welcome tidings brings,

The true brave servant of the best of kings:

Cutts, whose known worth no herald needs proclaim,

His wounds and his own worth can speak his fame."

He was colonel of the Coldstream, or second regiment of guards, in 1701; when Steele, who was indebted to his interest for a captain’s commission in the lord Lucas’s regiment of fusileers, inscribed to him his first work, “The Christian Hero.” On the accession of queen Anne, he was made a lieutenant-general of the forces in Holland. February 13, 1702-3, he was appointed commander in chief of the English forces on the continent, during the absence of the duke of Marlborough; commander in chief of the forces in Ireland, under the duke of Ormond, March 23, 1704-5; and afterwards one of the lords justices of that kingdom, to keep him out of the way of action, a circumstance which broke his heart. He died at Dublin, Jan. 26, 1706-7, and was buried there on the 29th, in the | cathedral of Christ-church. He was a person of eminent natural parts, well cultivated by study and conversation; of a free, unreserved temper; and of undaunted bravery and resolution. As he was a servant to queen Mary when princess of Orange, and learned the trade of war under her consort, he was early devoted to them both, and a warm supporter of the revolution. He was an absolute stranger to fear; and on all occasions gave distinguishing proofs of his intrepidity, particularly at the siege of Limerick in 1691, at the memorable attack of the castle of Namur in 1695, and at the siege of Venlo in 1702. Macky says of him, in 1703: “He hath abundance of wit, but too much seized with vanity and self-conceit; he is affable, familiar, and very brave. Few considerable actions happened in this as well as the last war, in which he was not, and hath been wounded in all the actions where he served; is esteemed to be a mighty vigilant officer, and for putting the military orders in execution; he is pretty tall, lusty, wellshaped, and an agreeable companion; hath great revenues, yet so very expensive, as always to be in debt; towards fifty years old.” Swift, in a ms note on the above passage, with his usual laconic cruelty, calls lord Cutts, “The vainest old fool alive.” He wrote a poem on the death of queen Mary; and published in 1687, “Poetical Exercises, written upon several occasions, and dedicated to her Royal Highness Mary Princess of Orange; licensed March 23, 1686-7, Roger L’Estrange.” It contains, besides the dedication signed “J. Cutts,” verses to that princess; a poem on Wisdom; another to Mr. Waller on his commending it; seven more copies of verses (one of them called “La Muse Cavalier,” which had been ascribed to lord Peterborough, and as such mentioned by Mr. Walpole in the list of that nobleman’s writings), and eleven songs; the whole composing a very thin volume, which is by no means so scarce as Mr. Walpole supposes it to be. The author speaks of having more pieces by him. 1


Biog Brit. for which the life was originally drawn up by Mr. Nichols.—See also his Collection of Poems, and Alterbury’s Correspondence.—Orford’s Royal and Noble Authors.—Swift’s Works, by Nichols.