CLERKE, Henry II (c.1640-89), of Enford, Wilts. and the Inner Temple, London.

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. c.1640, 1st s. of Henry Clerke I. educ. I. Temple 1657. m. 3 Feb. 1673 (with £3,500), Hester, da. of Sir Erasmus de la Fountaine of Kirby Bellars, Leics., 1s. 1da. suc. fa. 1681.1

Offices Held

Clerk of entries, alienation office July 1660-d.2

Commr. for assessment, Wilts. 1664-80, 1689, j.p. 1674-June 1688, Oct. 1688-d., dep. lt. 1683-June 1688, Oct. 1688-d.; freeman, Calne 1685-June 1688.3


Clerke’s estate lay some seven miles from Ludgershall, where, as a Tory and a high churchman, he no doubt enjoyed the support of Lord Ailesbury (Robert Bruce) in 1685. He served on no committees in James II’s Parliament and made no recorded speeches, but was summoned to the meeting of the court caucus on 17 Nov. He avoided the lord lieutenant’s questions on the repeal of the Penal Laws and Test Act in 1688 by going to London, but the King’s electoral agents described him as ‘a very ill man, and not to be reconciled to your Majesty’s interest, except the fear of losing his office in the alienation office will engage him’. Though they expected him to be returned, Clerke was not elected to the Convention. He was confirmed in his office by the new regime on 10 June 1689, but he was buried at Enford on 30 Oct., the last of his family to sit in Parliament.4

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: John. P. Ferris


  • 1. Westminster Abbey Reg. (Harl. Soc. x), 8; Wilts. RO, 413/151; Cal. Treas. Bks. vii. 207.
  • 2. CSP Dom. 1660-1, p. 117.
  • 3. CSP Dom. 1685, p. 128; PC2/72, f. 678.
  • 4. Cal. Treas. Bks. viii. 431; ix. 153, 452; Wilts. RO, Enford par. reg.