PYNSENT (PINSENT), Sir William, 1st Bt. (1642-1719), of Urchfont, Wilts.

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

bap. 10 Aug. 1642, o.s. of William Pinsent, Merchant Taylor, of Watling Street, London by Anne, da. of William Lancelot, Mercer, of St. Olave, Hart Street, London. educ. Oriel, Oxf. 1655; L. Inn 1667. m. lic. 4 July 1676, Patience, da. of John Bond of London, 3s. 2da. suc. fa. 1643; cos. Edward St. Barbe in Oxon. estate c.1674; cr. Bt. 13 Sept. 1687.1

Offices Held

J.p. Wilts. June 1688-d.; commr. for assessment, Oxon. 1689, Dorset and Wilts. 1689-90; sheriff, Wilts. 1693-4.


Pynsent came from a Devonshire yeoman family. Both his father and uncle went to London and did well, and he does not seem to have adopted a profession, though he lived in chambers in Lincoln’s Inn till his marriage. In 1678 he bought a small estate at Urchfont, four miles from Devizes, and built a house there. He was one of the dissenters recommended for the commission of the peace in 1688. Probably on the recommendation of (Sir) John Eyles, he was pricked sheriff in November, but he did not serve, and went over to William of Orange. Returned on the corporation interest in 1689, largely in order to exclude Eyles, he was not an active Member of the Convention, in which he was appointed to only eight committees. A Whig, he supported the disabling clause in the bill to restore corporations, and was named to the committee for the bill imposing a general oath of allegiance to the new regime. He never stood again and died in 1719. His son sat for Taunton as a Whig from 1715 to 1722.2

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: John. P. Ferris


  • 1. Soc. of Genealogists, Boyd’s London Units 38949; Lond. Mar. Lic. ed. Foster, 1064; PCC 158 Hene; Lord Nottingham’s Chancery Cases (Selden Soc. lxiii), 396.
  • 2. Wilts. Arch. Mag. xlvi. 39; Bodl. Fleming mss 361. PCC 193 Browning.