COWPER, James (1622-83), of Westminster.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer



24 Mar. 1659

Family and Education

bap. 8 Dec. 1622, 5th s. of Sir William Cowper, 1st Bt. (d.1664) of Ratling Court, Nonington, Kent by Martha, da. of James Master of East Langdon, Kent. educ. Emmanuel, Camb. 1640; L. Inn 1643, called 1650. m. 9 May 1657, Anne (d. 2 July 1710), da. of John Wroth of Loughton, Essex, 2s. 1da.1

Offices Held

Commr. for militia, Herts. Mar. 1660, j.p. Mar. 1660-78; commr. for over and terminer, Home circuit July 1660, assessment, Herts. Aug. 1660-1.2


Cowper’s great-grandfather was a London Dyer who died in 1569. His father, ‘an eminent lover of the Church’, obtained a lease of Hertford Castle from James I and a baronetcy and office from Charles I. He was imprisoned as a Royalist during the Civil War and claimed to have lost £17,000, although all that can be traced is a payment of £500 at Haberdashers’ Hall. Cowper himself took no part in the Civil War, during which he qualified as a lawyer, but he became a property developer during the Interregnum in association with the father of Andrew Henley. In