GORING, Charles (1664-1708), of Washington, Suss.

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



16 Apr. 1701 - Mar. 1708

Family and Education

b. 1664, 4th s. of Sir Henry Goring†, 2nd Bt., of Highden, Washington by Frances, da. of Sir Edward Bishopp, 2nd Bt.†, of Parham, Suss.  educ. Magdalen, Oxf. matric. 3 Dec. 1680, aged 16, BA 1684, MA 1687, DCL 1706.  m. (1) 28 Feb. 1687, Mary Edmonds (d. 1690) of Yapton, Suss., s.p.; (2) 16 Nov. 1699, Frances (d. 1727), da. of Richard Bridger*, s.p.1

Offices Held

Sub-commr. of prizes, Portsmouth 1702–6; v.-adm. Suss. by 1704–?6.2


Goring should not be confused with his nephew, Charles Goring†, who represented Steyning in the 1689 Convention and later inherited the baronetcy. In November 1687 Goring was recommended by James II for a fellowship at Magdalen, perhaps as a sweetener to his father, a strong Tory then in opposition, but Sir Henry’s negative replies to the ‘three questions’ on the Test Act and Penal Laws prevented any further favours to the son and he did not get his fellowship. After the Revolution Goring took the oaths, unlike his father, and, having unsuccessfully contested the general election for Steyning in January 1701, was returned at a by-election on the family interest. He told against making an appointment to the land tax commission in Suffolk on 5 June 1701 and was blacklisted as having opposed the preparations for war. Classed as a Tory by Robert Harley* at the opening of the next Parliament, he had three tellerships in this session which were clearly on the Tory side: against calling the petitioners in the Malmesbury election dispute to the bar (14 Feb. 1702); against committing the bill to endow Worcester College, Oxford, with Sir Thomas Cookes Winford’s* charity (29 Apr.); and against an amendment allowing Quakers to affirm rather than take the oath of abjuration (6 May). He was a teller on a further three occasions in May: against keeping the wording of an amendment to the bill obliging Jews to provide for their Protestant children (8th), for an instruction to the committee on a naturalization bill to inquire into the ‘quality and ability’ of those named in the bill (15th), and for changing an amendment to the bill for the relief of Protestant tenants of Irish forfeitures (19th).3

Shortly after Anne’s succession Goring was appointed a sub-commissioner of prizes at a salary of £300 p.a. and a little later was made vice-admiral of Sussex. He was returned again for Steyning in 1702, but was less active than before, probably because his appointment kept him much of the time in Portsmouth, from where he sent Robert Harley information in connexion with suspected French agents. Forecast as a probable opponent of the Tack, and lobbied by Harley, he duly voted against it or was absent on 28 Nov. 1704. Returned as usual for Steyning in 1705, he was listed as a placeman and a ‘Churchman’ and, in the first crucial division of the Parliament, voted on 25 Oct. 1705 against the Court candidate for Speaker. No action was taken against him immediately, but after he had told three times for the Tories in the disputed election cases of Amersham, Leicester and Newcastle-under-Lyme (1 Dec. 1705, 8 and 27 Feb. 1706), the ministry’s patience was exhausted and he was dismissed from the prize office in the following May. He was probably removed as vice-admiral of Sussex at about the same time. No notable activity is recorded for Goring in the Journals in the following two sessions, failing health possibly being responsible. Classed as a Tory and as a Tacker in two lists of 1708, he died at the end of March 1708, his nephew Henry Goring* taking over the family interest at Steyning.4

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. Suss. N. and Q. xi. 59; xv. 116; PCC 94 Herne.
  • 2. Cal. Treas. Bks. xvii. 47; xx. 648.
  • 3. CSP Dom. 1687–9, pp. 90, 101.
  • 4. HMC Portland, iv. 78; Add. 70338, Goring to Harley, 4 June [?]; Bull. IHR, xxxviii. 24, 30; Luttrell, Brief Relation, vi. 285.