Francis Jeune

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A caricature of Sir Francis Jeune presiding in court
Lord St Helier

Francis Jeune, Baron St Helier 1843-1905 Lawyer and judge

Francis Henry Jeune, 1st Baron St Helier GCB, PC, QC, known as Sir Francis Jeune, was the son of The Right Reverend Francois Jeune, Bishop of Peterborough, and Margaret Symons, daughter of Henry Symons. Educated at Harrow School and Balliol College, Oxford, he was President of the Oxford Union in 1864. In 1868, he was called to the Bar of the Inner Temple.

Judicial career

In 1888 he became a Queen's Counsel. In 1891 he was appointed as a Judge in the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Division of the High Court and knighted. In June 1892 he became President of the Court in succession to Sir Charles Parker Butt and joined the Privy Council. In December of that year he was also appointed Judge Advocate General by Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone, a post he held until 1895. He continued as President of the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Division until January 1905 when, beset by ill health, he resigned. In 1897, he was appointed a Knight Commander of the Bath and in 1902, a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath. In February 1905 he was granted an annuity of £3,500 and raised to the peerage as Baron St Helier of St Helier in the Island of Jersey and of Arlington Manor in the County of Berkshire.


On 17 August 1881, Lord St Helier married Susan Mary Elizabeth Stanley, the recently widowed daughter of Keith William Stewart-Mackenzie and Hannah Charlotte Hope-Vere. In 1882 their only child, a son, Francis Jeune, was born; on 19 August 1904, he died of enteric fever in Poona, India. Lord St Helier died the next year, on 9 April 1905, aged 62. As he had no surviving male issue, the barony died with him. Lady St Helier died in January 1931.

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