WALLOP, Robert (1601-67), of Hurstbourne Priors, Hants.
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Family and Education
b. 20 July 1601, o.s. of Sir Henry Wallop† of Farleigh Wallop, Hants by Elizabeth, da. and h. of Robert Corbet of Moreton Corbet, Salop. educ. Hart Hall, Oxf. 1615. m. (1) Lady Anne Wriothesley, da. of Henry, 3rd Earl of Southampton, 1s. 2da.; (2) lic. 16 Feb. 1663 ‘aged 30’, Mary, da. of John Lambert of Calton, Yorks., s.p. suc. fa. 1642.1
Col of militia, Hants 1626-42, commr. for martial law 1627; j.p. Hants by 1636-July 1660, Salop ?1649-53, Mdx. and Surr. 1650-2; commr. for assessment, Hants 1643-52, Salop 1647-52, Som. 1648-50, Northants. 1649-52, Hants 1657, Hants and Salop Jan. 1660, sequestration, Hants 1643, levying money 1643, defence, Hants 1643, Salop 1644, execution of ordinances, Hants 1644, safety 1645; gov. of Covent Garden precinct 1646; freeman, Winchester by 1647-62; commr. for militia, Hants and Salop 1648, 1659, Hants Mar. 1660, custos rot. Hants by 1650-Mar. 1660; commr. for oyer and terminer, Western circuit 1655.2
Member, committee of both kingdoms 1644-8; commr. for scandalous offences 1646, exclusion from sacrament 1648; member, high court of justice 1649; Councillor of State 1649-Feb. 1651, Dec. 1651-3, May 1659-25 Feb. 1660.
Wallop’s ancestors had held estates in Hampshire since the 14th century and first represented the county in 1329. His father, one of the wealthiest commoners of his day, consistently opposed Charles I until his death as knight of the shire on the eve of the Civil War. Wallop himself, an equally strong Parliamentarian, sat in the high court of justice, but did not sign the King’s death warrant, and later claimed that he ‘only was present in the pretended court to preserve his Majesty’s life’.3
A Councillor of State under the Rump, Wallop held local office only during the Protectorate. In 1659 he secured the return of the republican leader Sir Henry Vane for his pocket borough of Whitchurch. Even as late as 1660 he was assuring Edmund Ludlow that he felt ‘no less zeal to the Commonwealth than when it was at its highest prosperity’. Nevertheless he opened negotiations with the exiled court for a pardon, but ‘his friends declined to proceed unless he would pay £4,000 more of the debts of an extravagant son’. He was returned to the Convention for Whitchurch, two miles from Hurstbourne Priors, but took no part in its proceedings before he was disabled from sitting on 11 June. He was excepted from the Act of Indemnity, though his life was to be spared; but he was declared incapable of holding office and committed to the custody of the serjeant-at-arms. A bill for reparations to the Royalist Marquess of Winchester out of Wallop’s estate passed the House of Lords and was read twice in the Commons; but the committee never reported. It was revived in the first session of the Cavalier Parliament, steered through committee by Francis Goodricke and carried to the Lords by George Fane; meanwhile Wallop had been summoned to appear before the Commons to show reason why his estates should not be forfeited under the bill of pains and penalties. ‘Lying under the insupportable burden and sense of the just displeasure of the honourable House’ and ‘being surprised with the suddenness’, he made a poor defence. Under the Act he was sentenced to imprisonment for life; but his estates were granted to his brother-in-law, Lord Treasurer Southampton, ‘permitting him to dispose of the same or any part thereof’ for the benefit of the family. Most of the Irish property was sold, but the Hampshire estate remained intact, the income being paid over to Wallop’s son.4
On 16 Jan. 1662 Wallop petitioned for remission of the ignominious punishment requiring him to stand under the gallows at Tyburn every year on the anniversary of the sentence on Charles I. Describing himself as ‘an old man, forsaken by his nearest relations’ and ‘so reduced by fever that he could never recover from any punishment’, he protested that:
His most grievous affliction is the sense of his Majesty’s indignation for his great offence in taking away the precious life of the late King, although he ever abhorred that execrable murder. ... [He] has guilt laid on himself and his family for want of due information, his pretended friends having failed him in order to gain advantage by his estate, and thus has been censured by the Parliament of 1660, and lost the good opinion of King and people.
But his petition was rejected, nor was he successful in an application for ‘liberty of free air before he dies’. On the death of his first wife, he married the daughter of a fellow prisoner, General Lambert, giving his age as thirty. He died in the Tower on 19 Nov. 1667, and was buried at Farleigh Wallop.5
Ref Volumes: 1660-1690
Authors: M. W. Helms / Paula Watson
- 1. DNB; V. J. Watney, Wallop Fam. i. p. liv; London Mar. Lic. ed. Foster, 1405.
- 2. Add. 21922, ff. 59v, 201; CSP Dom. 1627-8, p. 440; Winchester corp. ledger bk. 5, f. 142; Thurloe, iii. 296.
- 3. VCH Hants, iii. 261; Keeler, Long Parl. 376-8; Watney, i. pp. xlviii-liv; CSP Dom. 1661-2, p. 245.
- 4. Ludlow Mems. ii. 51, 254; CSP Dom. 1661-2, p. 246; CJ, viii. 61, 110, 134, 285, 286, 287; HMC 7th Rep. 117, 148, 151; CSP Ire. 1660-2, p. 680.
- 5. CSP Dom. 1661-2, pp. 245-6; 1667, p. 132; Watney, i. p. liv.