SAVAGE, John (1603-1654), of Rock Savage, Cheshire

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1604-1629, ed. Andrew Thrush and John P. Ferris, 2010
Available from Cambridge University Press



Family and Education

b. 25 Feb. 1603,1 1st s. of Thomas, 1st Visct. Savage of Rock Savage, cllr. to Queen Henrietta Maria, and Elizabeth, da. of Thomas Darcy, 1st Earl Rivers. m. (1) bef. 1626, Catherine, da. of William Parker, Lord Morley and Monteagle of Hornby Castle, Lancs. 3s. 5da. (1 d.v.p.); (2) bef. 6 Mar. 1647, Mary, da. of Thomas Ogle of South Dessington, Northumb., 1s. kntd. 7 Aug. 1624;2 suc. fa. as 3rd bt. and 2nd Visct. Savage 1635, maternal gdfa. as 2nd earl Rivers 1640. d. 10 Oct. 1654.3 sig. John Savage.

Offices Held

J.p. Cheshire 1619-at least 1642,4 commr. subsidy, 1621, 1624;5 freeman, Chester, Cheshire 1625,6 alderman 1633-46;7 commr. sewers, Cheshire 1626, 1627,8 Forced Loan 1627,9 charitable uses, 1630, 1631, 1637, 1639,10 knighthood fines 1631-5,11 inquiry fees, Cheshire and Flints. 1634,12 array, Cheshire and Essex 1642;13 ranger, Delamere Forest, Cheshire 1632;14 steward, Halton, Lancs. c.1635-9,15 high steward, Macclesfield, Cheshire 1635, surveyor, Macclesfield Forest 1637.16

Member, Fishery Soc. 1632.17

Col. of ft. (roy.) 1644-5.18


The Savage family settled in Cheshire in the fourteenth century. Savage’s paternal great-grandfather built a magnificent stately home, Rock Savage, in 1567 and his grandfather, John†, was among the first to purchase a baronetcy.19 In 1615 Savage’s father inherited both the baronetcy and the family’s large Cheshire estates. In 1626 he was created Viscount Savage and two years later became chancellor to the queen consort.

His family’s local eminence ensured that Savage was appointed a magistrate at an early age. The family had long been connected with Chester, as both Savage’s grandfather and great-grandfather had served as mayor. In November 1620 Savage’s father attempted to use this connection to persuade the corporation to elect his brother, John Savage of Barrow, to the 1621 Parliament, but he was unsuccessful due to pressure from the Prince’s Council and faction disputes within the corporation.20 It was perhaps as recompense that Savage gained a seat at Chester in 1624 and 1625. He does not appear in the records for either Parliament and may not have attended: the family had strong Catholic ties and in 1624 Savage was named in the Lords as a suspected recusant.21 The suspicion that Savage was a Catholic was well-founded, for his son-in-law Sir John Thimbleby was a recusant, and four years later he himself sought royal protection as a recusant.22

Savage succeeded his father as Viscount Savage in 1635, and on the death of his maternal grandfather, Thomas Darcy, in 1640 he also became the 2nd earl Rivers.23 A royalist during the Civil War, Savage served with Prince Rupert at Bristol in 1645, and compounded later that year, when he also pleaded the poverty of his estates.24 He was described as a convicted papist in 1651 and died three years later while imprisoned in the Upper Bench. Administration of his estate was granted to a creditor, John Watts.25

Ref Volumes: 1604-1629

Author: Chris Kyle


  • 1. Reg. St. Botolph Bishopsgate ed. A.W.C. Hallen, i. 154.
  • 2. Shaw, Knights of Eng. ii. 186.
  • 3. G. Ormerod, Hist. Cheshire, i. 716-18; CP (Colchester, Darcy of Chiche, Rivers, Savage).
  • 4. C231/4, pp. 90, 227.
  • 5. C212/22/20, 23.
  • 6. Chester Freeman Rolls (Lancs. and Cheshire Rec. Soc. li), 111.
  • 7. Cal. Chester City Mins. ed. M.J. Groombridge (Lancs. and Cheshire Rec. Soc. cvi), 173; A. and O. i. 876.
  • 8. C181/3, ff. 215, 237v.
  • 9. SP16/56/72.
  • 10. C192/1, unfol.
  • 11. E178/5179, f. 5; E198/4/31, f. 1.
  • 12. C181/4, f. 192.
  • 13. Northants RO, FH133.
  • 14. Add. 33378, f. 91v.
  • 15. Duchy of Lancaster Office-Holders ed. R. Somerville, 237.
  • 16. Add. 33378, f. 92.
  • 17. SP16/221/15.
  • 18. P.R. Newman, Roy. Officers in Eng. and Wales, 331.
  • 19. CB; HP Commons, 1558-1603.
  • 20. Harl. 2105, ff. 279, 281.
  • 21. LJ, iii. 395.
  • 22. CSP Dom. 1639-40, p. 215; Misc. Recusant Recs. ed. C. Talbot (Cath. Rec. Soc. liii), 396.
  • 23. CP.
  • 24. Newman, 331; CCC, 914-16.
  • 25. PROB 6/31, f. 221.