HARTOPP, Sir John, 3rd Bt. (1637-1722), of Stoke Newington, Mdx. and Freatby, Leics.
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Family and Education
bap. 31 Oct. 1637, 3rd but o. surv. s. of Sir Edward Hartopp, 2nd Bt., of Freatby by Mary, da. of Sir John Coke† of Melbourne, Derbys., sec. of state 1625-40. educ. St. John’s, Oxf. 1655; L. Inn 1656. m. 8 Nov. 1666, Elizabeth (d. 9 Nov. 1711), da. of Charles Fleetwood of Feltwell, Norf., c.-in-c. 1659, 4s. (3 d.v.p.) 9 da. suc. fa. Mar. 1658.1
Commr. for militia, Leics. 1659, Mar. 1660, assessment Jan. 1660-3, 1677-9, j.p. Mar.-July 1660, Feb. 1688-?d., sheriff 1670-1.
Hartopp’s ancestors were of little account before the Tudor period, receiving a grant of arms only in 1596. His grandfather was created a baronet in 1619, and sat for the county in 1628-9. His father raised a regiment for Parliament in the Civil War and continued to hold local office during the Interregnum. His mother became the third wife of the republican general Fleetwood in 1664, and two further intermarriages followed, including Hartopp’s own. The entire family settled in the London suburbs, and attended the Independent conventicle of Dr John Owen in Leadenhall Street. Owen’s sermons were printed many years later from Hartopp’s shorthand notes.2
Hartopp was defeated by Lord Roos (John Manners) at the first general election of 1679. But he petitioned successfully, giving evidence on his own behalf at the bar of the House. The election was declared void, and he defeated his cousin John Coke II at the by-election. He was classed as ‘honest’ by Shaftesbury and voted for exclusion, but his only committee in the first Exclusion Parliament was for a naturalization bill. Re-elected without a contest in the autumn, he was moderately active in the second Exclusion Parliament, with eight committees, including those to inquire into the conduct of Sir Robert Peyton, into abhorring, and the proceedings of the judges. He was also among those instructed to bring in bills to regulate parliamentary elections, to unite Protestants, and to reform the Post Office. He was again unopposed in 1681, but left no trace on the records of the Oxford Parliament.3
Hartopp’s house at Stoke Newington was raided for a conventicle in April 1686, and he was listed among the opposition to James II as one considerable for interest in Leicestershire. Nevertheless he may have become a Whig collaborator. He was restored to the commission of the peace in 1688 and recommended as court candidate for the county. But he is not known to have stood again. He died on 1 Apr. 1722 and was buried at Stoke Newington. His funeral sermon was preached by Isaac Watts, for some years his family chaplain. His intention of leaving £10,000 for the instruction of candidates for the dissenting ministry was partially frustrated by his heirs. No later member of the family entered Parliament.4