ROUS, Sir John, 2nd Bt. (c.1656-1730), of Henham, Suff.

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.1656, o.s. of John Rous I. educ. St. Catherine’s, Camb. 1672. m. (1) by 1676, Philippa (d.1685), da. of Thomas Bedingfield of Darsham, Suff. and coh. to her bro. Thomas, 2s. (1 d.v.p.) 3da.; (2) lic. 8 Sept. 1686, Anne, da. and h. of Robert Wood of Kingston-upon-Thames, Surr., 6s. (2 d.v.p.) 3da. suc. fa. 27 Nov. 1670.1

Offices Held

Lt.-col. of militia horse, Suff. 1676, col. 1680-?Apr. 1688, dep. lt. by 1676-Apr. 1688, 1689-?94, sheriff 1678-9, commr. for assessment, Suff. 1679-80, 1689-90, Dunwich 1689, j.p. Suff. 1680-July 1688, 1689-94, by 1701-?d.; alderman, Dunwich 1685-Oct. 1688.2


Rous was a strong opponent of conventicles, and for that reason was proposed as a j.p. by Bishop Sparrow in 1677, but he was not accepted until the exclusion crisis. He owned property near Eye, for which he was returned as a Tory in 1685. He was not active in James II’s Parliament, in which he was appointed only to the committees to consider the bill for the repair of Yarmouth harbour and to recommend expiring laws for renewal. Presumably an opponent of the King’s religious policy, he was removed from the lieutenancy. He defeated the Whig Sir Samuel Barnardiston to sit for the county in the Convention, and according to Anthony Rowe voted to agree with the Lords that the throne was not vacant. He was twice given leave to go into the country, and his only committee was on the bill to enable Lord Hereford to settle a jointure on his wife (14 Dec. 1689). He is not known to have stood again, although he apparently took the oaths to the new regime. He was one of the Tory magistrates dropped in 1694, and may have remained a Jacobite sympathizer Since in 1721 his name was sent to the Pretender as a supporter. He died on 8 Apr. 1730 in his 74th year, and was buried at Wangford. His grandson was returned for the county in 1768, and his great-grandson, ‘bred up in Tory principles’, was raised to the peerage in 1796.3

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. Collins, Peerage, viii. 478-9; Vis. Surr. (Harl. Soc. lx), 124.
  • 2. CSP Dom. 1676-7, p. 590; 1685, pp. 15, 166.
  • 3. E. Bohun, Autobiog. 37, 121; Copinger, Suff. Manors, ii. 57, 73; PC2/72/681, 689; Stuart mss 65/16.