BABINGTON, Matthew (1612-69), of Rothley Temple, Leics.

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



Family and Education

b. 17 May 1612, 1st s. of Thomas Babington of Rothley Temple by Catherine, da. of George Kendall of Smithsby, Derbys. educ. Queens’, Camb. 1631; I. Temple 1631, called 1640. m. c.1634 (with £2,000), Anne, da. of Sampson Hopkins of Coventry, 4s. (1 d.v.p.) 8da. suc. fa. 1645.1

Offices Held

J.p. Leics. 1657-9, Mar. 1660-d., commr. for militia Mar. 1660, oyer and terminer, Midland circuit, July 1660, assessment, Leics. Aug. 1660-d.; dep. lt. 1667-d.2


Babington’s ancestors moved into the East Midlands early in the 15th century, one of them sitting for Nottinghamshire in 1426. His father was a member of the county committee, and his brother an officer in the parliamentary army. Babington himself, however, took no known part in the Civil War. In 1653 he asked for and obtained title to the tithes of Gaddesby, part of Rothley rectory, which were detained by a Roman Catholic. But his brother was involved in Booth’s rising in 1659, and he himself was committed to Lambeth House by the Council of State on a charge of levying war against the Parliament and corresponding with the enemy.3

Babington was returned for the county at the general election of 1660. An inactive Member of the Convention, he made no recorded speeches but was appointed to eight committees, of which the most important were to appoint army commissioners and to enable discharged soldiers to exercise trades in corporate towns. On 8 Dec. he carried the estate bill of George Faunt to the Upper House. He is not known to have stood again, and was buried at Rothley on 27 Sept. 1669. Two years later the King obtained a fellowship at Trinity College, Cambridge for his younger son, Matthew, in consideration of Babington’s ‘eminent loyalty ... both to the hazard of his life and impairing his estate’.4

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Authors: M. W. Helms / Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Nichols, Leics. iii. 954-5.
  • 2. SP44/20/141A.
  • 3. Leics. Arch. Soc. Trans. xix. 326; VCH Leics. ii. 110; Cal. Comm. Comp. 2411, CSP Dom. 1659-60, pp. 119-20, 205, 562; Cal. Cl. SP, iv. 406.
  • 4. CSP Dom. 1671-2, p. 549.