HOWARD, Edward, Visct. Morpeth (1646-92).

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



27 Sept. 1666
Mar. 1679
Oct. 1679

Family and Education

b. 27 Nov. 1646, o. surv. s. of Charles Howard, 1st Earl of Carlisle. educ. travelled abroad (Germany) 1665. m. lic. 27 Apr. 1668, Elizabeth, da. and coh. of Sir William Uvedale, treas. of the chamber, of Wickham, Hants, wid. of Sir William Berkeley, RN, 1s. 1da. suc. fa. as 2nd Earl of Carlisle 24 Feb. 1685.1

Offices Held

Commr. for assessment, Cumb. 1664-80, Northumb. 1673-80; j.p. Cumb. 1667-May 1688, Oct. 1688-d., ld. lt. (jt.) 1668-85, (sole) 1689-d.; dep. gov. Carlisle 1678-85, alderman by 1680-June 1688, Oct. 1688-d., mayor 1683-4.2

Capt. of ft. 1667; cornet, English Gens d’Armes (French army) 1667; col. of ft. 1678-9.3


Lord Morpeth, while still under age, was designed by his father to succeed Lord Ogle (Henry Cavendish) as Member for Northumberland. But when the vacancy failed to materialize he took the seat at Morpeth promised to Joseph Williamson. An inactive Member of the Cavalier Parliament, he was appointed to only 131 committees, his principal interest being the prevention of theft and rapine in the northern counties. He carried to the Lords a bill for this purpose on 21 Dec. 1666, and later served on four similar committees. In 1669 Sir Thomas Osborne included him among the Members who had usually voted for supply, and his name appears on the Paston list. He did not speak in the House, except on 8 Nov. 1675 to present the petition of his Roman Catholic uncle Col. Thomas Howard, who had been sent to the Tower for circulating a scandalous attack on William Cavendish, Lord Cavendish. He was among those ‘to be remembered’ on the working lists, and noted as under his father’s influence. But Sir Richard Wiseman reckoned him a court supporter, and Shaftesbury marked him ‘doubly vile’. He was on the government list of the court party in 1678, and was given one of the newly raised regiments.4

At the dissolution of the Cavalier Parliament Lord Morpeth, who was acting lord lieutenant of Cumberland during his father’s absence in Jamaica, agreed to stand jointly with Sir John Lowther II for the county and to share expenses. No opposition was expected, and they were duly adopted at a gentry meeting, but Morpeth had quarrelled with Sir George Fletcher and Sir Richard Grahme, two of the most influential local personages, and on 13 Feb. 1679 (Sir) Christopher Musgrave wrote to (Sir) Joseph Williamson that ‘the last post brought news that Lord Morpeth will not stand for the county, which occasions much discourse’. He was re-elected at Morpeth, and again marked ‘vile’ on Shaftesbury’s list. In the first Exclusion Parliament he was appointed only to the committee of elections and privileges and to the inquiry into the woollen industry. According to Roger Morrice he voted against the committal of the exclusion bill. In the autumn election he was returned for Cumberland, but his only committee in the second Exclusion Parliament was to bring in a bill to restrict imports of Scottish cattle. He had exacerbated his quarrel with Fletcher by procuring his removal from county office, and consequently was faced with opposition to his re-election in 1681. His father, returning from Jamaica, soon realized that Fletcher could not be defeated in Cumberland, and persuaded Morpeth’s uncle (Sir) Philip Howard to make way for him at Carlisle; but he played no known part in the Oxford Parliament. He succeeded as second earl shortly before the next general election.5

Lord Carlisle was listed among those who opposed James II in 1687, pledged his service to William of Orange in July 1688, and was appointed lord lieutenant after the Revolution. ‘A cripple with the gout’, he died on 23 Apr. 1692, and was buried at Wickham.6

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Naworth Accounts (Surtees Soc. clxviii), 76; Westminster City Lib., St. Martin in the Fields par. reg.; Cal. Cl. SP, v. 176; Berry, Hants Genealogies, 75.
  • 2. Bulstrode Pprs. 76; CSP Dom. 1677-8, p. 677; Luttrell, i. 512; Ferguson, Cumb. and Westmld. Members 581; S. Jefferson, Hist. Carlisle, 447.
  • 3. HMC Le Fleming, 53.
  • 4. CSP Dom. 1665-6, p. 186; 1666-7, p. 308; Grey, iii. 147.
  • 5. HMC Le Fleming, 169-71, 178, 396; CSP Dom. 1677-8, pp. 414; CSP Dom. 1679-80, p. 82; HMC Dartmouth, i. 75-76; Westmld. RO, D/Ry 2126, 2285, 2375.
  • 6. CSP Dom. 1687-9, p. 233; EHR, xxx. 93.