Daniel Arthur

 
rue Tiquetonne
 Rue Tiquetonne
Sir Daniel Arthur (Clare/Limerick, 1620? – Paris, 1705) was a talented and well-connected banker who first came to prominence as the forces of King William III of Orange dealt with the Catholic claimant to the British throne, King James II. During the siege of Limerick, with many Irish Catholic landlords trying to preserve as much of their wealth as they could, Daniel Arthur was “found to have 2 million livres of their wealth in his possession”, according to a French commander at the siege, the Marquis d’Albyville. 

The Treaty of Limerick spurred the emigration of Catholic landowners and soldiers who came to form a majority (some 60% of the total, according to Nathalie Genet-Rouffiac) of the Jacobite population that settled around the court of James II in the old castle of Saint Germain-en-Laye outside Paris. Daniel Arthur—knighted by James in 1690—was already well established in Paris by this time, having been exiled there in 1679 after having being implicated in the obscure ‘Popish plot’, or ‘Oates plot’ against King Charles II. He settled first in rue Mauconseil (1st arrondissement) and then, until his death, close by in the rue du Petit Lion (now called the rue Tiquetonne, 2nd arrondissement).  As further proof of Sir Daniel’s close connections with the court in Saint Germain-en-Laye, two of his daughters married Jacobite officers. One of these officers, Patrice FitzGerald, son of Richard Fitzgerald of Waterford, was staying at the Hôtel de la Rivière in the rue aux Ours (3rd arrondissement) at the time of his marriage with Sir Daniel's daughter, Elizabeth, in January 1704. 

  rue Mauconseil
 Rue Mauconseil
The English and Irish Jacobites were only too happy to confide their financial affairs to Arthur and to a number of other Irish bankers with names like Waters, Quains, Woulfe, Coppinger, Darcy and Callaghan. Their number included Richard Cantillon, an older relative of the Richard Cantillon discussed elsewhere in these pages. But Arthur was possibly the most successful and influential of all these bankers, with a client list that extended to the extensive and wealthy Irish merchant community established on France’s western seaboard.
 
In spite of his deep Jacobite connections, he was able to maintain a banking house in London that was run by one of his sons. This cross-Channel network enabled the Arthurs, père et fils,  to run a  money transfer operation between Great Britain and the continent for wealthy British travellers. Another relative of Daniel Arthur, Francis Arthur, ran the Arthur & Crean bank in Madrid, ensuring that the British government turned to the Arthur family to funnel money to British prisoners of war in Spain. According to the Dictionary of Irish Biography, “All his employees in Paris were from the same part of Ireland as himself, particularly Limerick and Kerry”. One of these employees, Edmond Loftus, subsequently turns up as a banker in his own right at rue Quincampoix (3rd/4th arrondissements). The Cantillons—to whom Arthur was related—also belonged to this Kerry mafia.

 

 
rue Sauval
 Rue Sauval
Not surprisingly, both Richard Cantillons were given a helping hand in their banking career by Daniel Arthur's circle—the older chevalier Richard Cantillon ending up as banker to the British ambassador in Paris and the younger Richard becoming a conduit for the money sent to Spain for British prisoners held there during the War of the Spanish Succession.
 
Sir Daniel Arthur’s son by his second marriage, Daniel ‘Mannock’ Arthur continued as a banker in Paris after his father’s death in 1705, first out of rue Saint Denis (1st/2nd arrondissements), and then out of his father’s premises in rue du Petit Lion. After a dispute over his father’s inheritance was decided against Daniel ‘Mannock’ Arthur and in favour of another son, Daniel ‘Smith’ Arthur, the latter settled in Paris and took over the family business in 1713.

 

Daniel ‘Smith’ Arthur established premises first at rue de la Chanvrerie (absorbed by a section of the modern-day rue Rambuteau in the first arrondissement) and then (in 1715) in rue des vieilles Etuves (now rue Sauval, 1st arrondissement). But the Arthur banking empire went into decline after Sir Daniel’s death, with most of Daniel Arthur’s clients turning to the talented  Richard Cantillon the younger. 

 

Daniel ‘Mannock’ Arthur was a keen art collector, building up a substantial collection before his death in Spain. Mannock’s collection—which included paintings by Van Dyke, Michelangelo, Tinteretto, Veronese and Titian—was left to his wife, who remarried a Mr. Bagnall. The collection was subsequently sold to King George II and now forms part of the Royal Collection in Windsor.
 
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Select Bibliography
Le Grand Exil—Les Jacobites en France, 1688-1715 (2007)

Nathalie Genet-Rouffiac

 

 
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