Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Platt, Thomas Joshua

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PLATT, Sir THOMAS JOSHUA (1790?–1862), baron of the exchequer, born about 1790, was son of Thomas Platt of London, solicitor, who was principal clerk to three chief justices, Lords Mansfield, Kenyon, and Ellenborough, during a period of thirty years. He was educated at Harrow and at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated B.A. 1810, and M.A. 1814. He was called to the bar at the Inner Temple on 9 Feb. 1816, and named a king's counsellor on 27 Dec. 1834, when he became a favourite leader on the home circuit. As an advocate he was remarkable for the energy of his manner and the simplicity of his language. Before a common jury he was usually invincible, but met with fewer successes before special juries. He succeeded Baron Gurney as baron of the court of exchequer on 28 Jan. 1845, and sat until failing health obliged him to retire on 2 Nov. 1856. He was knighted at St. James's Palace on 23 April 1845. Though not deeply read, he proved a sensible judge, while his blunt courtesy and amiability made him popular with the bar. He died at 59 Portland Place, London, on 10 Feb. 1862, and was buried in Highgate cemetery. His widow Augusta died at 61 Queen's Gardens, Hyde Park, London, on 16 Feb. 1885, in her eighty-ninth year. By her Platt had a numerous family.

[Foss's Judges, 1864, ix. 244–5; Foss's Biographia Juridica, 1870, p. 517; Men of the Time, 1862, p. 625; Ballantine's Some Experiences, 8th edit. 1883, pp. 46, 47; Notes and Queries, 1862 iii. 25, 1890 x. 507, 1891 xi. 58, xii. 78, 238; Masters of the Bench of the Inner Temple, 1883, p. 102; Cansick's Epitaphs in Churches of St. Pancras, 1872, pp. 8, 104.]

G. C. B.