GODDARD, Richard (1676-1732), of Swindon, Wilts.

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



1710 - 1713
6 Nov. 1722 - 1727

Family and Education

bap. 6 Jan. 1676, 1st s. of Thomas Goddard of Swindon by Mary, da. of Oliver Pleydell of Shrivenham, Berks.  educ. M. Temple 1696. unmsuc. fa. 1704.1

Offices Held

Sheriff, Wilts. 1713–14.


While they had provided no previous representative in Parliament, the Swindon branch of the Goddards had enjoyed a position of prominence in Wiltshire even before their acquisition of the manor in 1562. The Member’s grandfather had acted as a Royalist commissioner of array in 1642, though in his later efforts to prevent the sequestration of his estate he claimed to have done so against his own wishes and only in response to the pleas of neighbouring gentlemen who had looked upon him as likely to exercise a powerful influence for moderation. Certainly he wasted no time in making his submissions when the county fell to the Parliamentarians. Goddard’s father may have been the Tory ‘Mr Goddard’ of Wiltshire, who in answer to James II’s questions about the Penal Laws and Test Act had disavowed any ambition of standing for Parliament and declared himself firmly against repeal. A Thomas Goddard of Swindon was, however, informed against in January 1691 as a man who ‘has in his custody a great number of arms, sufficient to arm a hundred men’. No action seems to have been taken against him. Goddard himself, after possibly mounting an abortive candidature ‘on the Tory interest’ at Cricklade in 1708, was brought in at Wootton Bassett in 1710 by the St. Johns. He was marked as a Tory on the ‘Hanover list’ and included both in the list of ‘Tory patriots’ opposed to the war and ‘worthy patriots’ who in the 1710–11 session helped to detect the mismanagements of the previous administration. He made no recorded speech. Despite an approach from voters at Great Bedwyn, he did not stand in the 1713 election. He later served as knight of the shire in the 1722 Parliament.2

Goddard made his will in September 1730, and died at Swindon, where he was buried ‘among his ancestors’, on 24 Aug. 1732. Besides an estate of nearly £3,000 a year, centred on Purton, Calne and Compton Bassett, Wiltshire, which passed to his only surviving brother, the London linen draper and Hamburg merchant Pleydell Goddard, he made small bequests to Lord Bruce (Charles*), the poor of Swindon, and ‘six worthy clergymen’ of Wiltshire.3

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Authors: D. W. Hayton / Henry Lancaster


  • 1. Wilts. RO, 1357/1A.
  • 2. VCH Wilts. ix. 120; Wilts. Arch. Mag. xxiv. 77–78; Duckett, Penal Laws and Test Act (1882), 219; CSP Dom. 1690–1, p. 236; HMC Bath, i. 190; H. T. Dickinson, Bolingbroke, 74; Wilts. RO, Ailesbury mss 1300/1175, John Powell to Ld. Bruce, Aug. [?1713].
  • 3. Wilts. RO, 212A/38/39/3; Gent. Mag. 1732, p. 930; Sir T. Phillips, Goddard Fam. Ped. (n.d.); A. W. Mabbs, Docs. Rel. to Goddard Fam. of N. Wilts. no. 234; Wilts. N. and Q. i. 304; Misc. Gen. et Her. ser. 4, iv. 186.