Dr. Arthur Lee (20 December 1740—12 December 1792), was an American diplomat during the American Revolutionary War. He was the son of Hon. Thomas Lee (1690-1750) and Hannah Harrison Ludwell (1701-1750). His brothers, William Lee (1739-1795), Richard Henry Lee (1732-1794), and Francis Lightfoot Lee (1734-1797) were also Revolutionary-era diplomats.
He attended Eton College in England and studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh, graduating in 1765. He then studied law in London and practised there from 1770 to 1776.
During the American Revolution he was sent as envoy of the Continental Congress to Spain and Prussia to gain support, but was unsuccessful in his endeavours.
Later in Paris, after helping negotiate the 1778 treaties with France, he fell out with Benjamin Franklin and Silas Deane. He persuaded Congress to recall Deane to America, but was himself recalled afterward.
Virginia sent Lee as a delegate to the Continental Congress in 1782.
Arthur Lee built and lived in Lansdowne, a large home which still stands in Urbanna, Virginia, a small waterfront town in Virginia's Middle Peninsula. It is presently a private residence. Dr. Lee is buried in a small family graveyard adjacent to his home.
Richard was the son of Col. Thomas Lee, Hon. (1690-1750) of "Stratford Hall", Westmoreland Co., Virginia. Thomas married Hannah Harrison Ludwell (1701-1750).
Hannah was the daughter of Col. Philip Ludwell II (1672-1726) of "Greenspring", and Hannah Harrison (1679-1731).
Thomas was the son of Col. Richard Lee II, Esq., “the scholar” (1647-1715) and Laetitia Corbin (ca. 1657-1706).
Laetitia was the daughter of Richard’s neighbor and, Councillor, Hon. Henry Corbin, Sr. (1629-1676) and Alice (Eltonhead) Burnham (ca. 1627-1684).
Richard II, was the son of Col. Richard Lee I, Esq., "the immigrant" (1618-1664) and Anne Constable (ca. 1621-1666).
Anne was the daughter of Thomas Constable and a ward of Sir John Thoroughgood.