BASSETT, Sir William (1628-93), of Claverton, nr. Bath, Som.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



27 Nov. 1669 - July 1679
Mar. 1681
1685 - 1687
1689 - 25 Sept. 1693

Family and Education

bap. 17 Apr. 1628, 1st s. of William Bassett of Claverton by his 2nd w. Elizabeth, da. and h. of Sir Joseph Killigrew† of Lothbury, London and Landrake, Cornw.  m. (1) Philadelphia, da. of James Campbell of Woodford, Essex and coh. to her bro. Sir John Campbell, 1st Bt., s.p.; (2) 28 Sept. 1685, Rachel, da. of Sir Theophilius Biddulph of Westcombe Park, Greenwich, Kent, s.psuc. fa. 1656; kntd. 7 July 1660.1

Offices Held


Bassett had represented Bath in almost every Parliament since 1669, and his reputation for drunkenness and debt made him no less worthy a choice to the corporation in 1690. Lord Carmarthen (Sir Thomas Osborne†) listed him as a Court Tory in a list produced in March, and as a Court supporter in two further lists later in the year. An additional list among Robert Harley’s* papers of Apr. 1691 also noted his pro-Court tendencies. He was, for the most part, an inactive Member. He was named on 28 Nov. 1691 to the committee ordered to draft a bill regarding the manufacture of saltpetre, and on 22 Nov. 1692 brought a complaint of privilege against two persons who had seized part of his estate, a verdict in his favour being reported on 28 Jan. 1693. Bassett died later that year on 25 Sept., and was buried at Claverton. He had already been forced to mortgage Claverton, and his will directed that the estate be sold by trustees to pay off his extensive debts, which was done in 1701.2

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. Som. and Dorset N. and Q. iii. 62; PCC 414 Berkeley; Le Neve’s Knights (Harl. Soc. viii), 89.
  • 2. F. Brown, Som. Wills, iv. 20; Collinson, Som. i. 146.