SMITH, Hugh (1632-80), of Long Ashton, Som.

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

Constituency

Dates

Mar. 1679

Family and Education

b. 21 Apr. 1632, 1st s. of Thomas Smith of Long Ashton by Florence, da. of John Paulett, 1st Baron Poulett of Hinton St. George, Som. m. bef. 1658, Elizabeth (d. 26 June 1697), da. of John Ashburnham I of Ashburnham, Suss. 3s. 3da. suc. fa. 1642; KB 23 Apr. 1661; cr. Bt. 16 May 1661.1

Offices Held

Commr. for assessment, Som. 1657, Jan. 1660-d., j.p. 1657-d., commr. for militia Mar. 1660; dep. lt. Som. June 1660-d., Bristol 1662-d.; commr. for sewers, Som. Aug., Dec. 1660; freeman, Bath 1662; commr. for corporations, Som. 1662-3, sheriff 1665-6, commr. for oyer and terminer, Western circuit 1665, recusants, Som. 1675.2

Biography

Smith’s family was of Gloucestershire origin, but his great-great-grandfather, who was twice mayor of Bristol, bought Long Ashton in 1545. The first of the family to enter Parliament was Hugh Smith, MP for Wareham in 1554. Smith’s father sat for Somerset in the Short Parliament, and for Bridgwater for a few months in its successor. He was in the royalist garrison of Sherborne in 1642, whence he fled to Cardiff and died soon afterwards. The estate, valued at £2,000 p.a., thus escaped sequestration. Smith was arrested for treasonable correspondence in 1651, and together with his stepfather Colonel Pigott attended a meeting of Cavalier conspirators at Salisbury just before Penruddock’s rising. But he later served as a grand juryman and a j.p. under the Protectorate.3

As a Cavalier’s son Smyth was ineligible for the Convention, but he stood for Somerset at the general election, no doubt with covert Poulett support, though against the cautious advice of his father-in-law, and to the dismay of the Presbyterians defeated John Buckland, who had represented the county in all three Protectorate Parliaments