ROBINSON, Luke (1610-69), of Thornton Riseborough, Normanby, Yorks.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer



23 Oct. 1645
Jan. - 7 Mar. 1659
4 Apr. - 11 June 1660

Family and Education

bap. 6 Sept. 1610, 1st s. of Sir Arthur Robinson of Deighton, Northallerton, Yorks. by 1st w. Elizabeth, da. of William Walthall, Mercer, of London. educ. Shenley, Herts.; Aughton, Yorks.; St. Peter’s, York; Christ’s, Camb. 1627; G. Inn 1630. m. (1) 9 May 1633, Frances (d.1634), da. of Phineas Hodgson, DD, chancellor of York Minster, 1 da.; (2) 1636, Mary (d.1642), da. of Edward Penell of Woodston, Lindridge, Worcs., 1s. d.v.p. 2da.; (3) Judith, da. of Sir John Reade of Wrangle, Lincs., 3s. 1da. suc. fa. 1642.1

Offices Held

Commr for assessment, Yorks (N. Riding) 1644 9, 1657-9, Yorks. 1650-2, York 1652, 1657, N. Riding and York Jan. 1660, militia, Yorks. 1648, Yorks. and York 1659, Yorks. Mar. 1660, drainage of the fens 1649; j.p. (N. Riding) by 1650-July 1660, (E. Riding) 1651 July 1660; commr. for poor prisoners, Yorks. 1653, security 1655-6.2

Commr. for exclusion from sacrament 1646, scandalous offences 1648; Councillor of State 1649-51, 31 Dec. 1659-23 Feb. 1660; commr. for obstructions 1651-2, customs and excise appeals 1659-Feb. 1660.


Robinson’s grandfather, of Staffordshire origin, became a Merchant Taylor and alderman of London. His father bought the manor of Thornton Riseborough in 1632. Robinson himself, the first of the family to sit, was a Parliamentarian in the Civil War, a recruiter and a Rumper. Although a ‘dedicated revolutionary’ he was not a regicide. Reappointed to the Council of State on the fall of the military regime, he was sent with Thomas Scot to spy on George Monck in January 1660. He lost his office on the return of the secluded Members, but was returned for Scarborough at the general election after a contest on the interest of Vice-Admiral John Lawson. He was named to no committees in the Convention, but spoke twice. When a message was received from the Lords on the opening day, he seized the opportunity of announcing his conversion to monarchism by asking the Speaker who made them a House of Lords. In the debate on the Declaration of Breda, ‘Mr Luke Robinson, formerly a most fierce man against the King, did now first magnify his grace and goodness’, and declared his assent to the Restoration, though he confessed that ‘he had been of a contrary judgment’. On 11 June he delivered ‘a recanting speech at the bar of very near half an hour long, all bathed in tears’. His submission was so humble and exemplary that he was merely disabled from sitting.3

In January 1663 evidence was given implicating Robinson in the plans for the Yorkshire rising of that year, but there is no record of proceedings against him. His will, dated 3 July, was proved on 29 Oct. 1669. No later member of the family entered Parliament.4

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Authors: M. W. Helms / P. A. Bolton / Basil Duke Henning


  • 1. Clay, Dugdale’s Vis. Yorks. iii. 167-9; Vis. Worcs. (Harl. Soc. xc), 79.
  • 2. Thurloe, iii. 402.
  • 3. VCH Yorks. N. Riding, i. 543; HMC 5th Rep. 146, 199, 206; D. Underdown, Pride’s Purge, 186, 205; Cal. Cl. SP, iv. 537-8, 572; Whitelocke Mems. iv. 389-98, 410.
  • 4. CSP Dom. 1663-4, p. 18; York Wills (Yorks. Arch. Soc. Rec. Ser. lx), 84.