WASHINGTON, Lawrence (1622-62), of Garsdon, Wilts.

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



1661 - 17 Jan. 1662

Family and Education

bap. 30 Sept. 1622, o.s. of Sir Lawrence Washington, registrar of Chancery, of Garsdon by Anne, da. of William Lewin, dean of the arches, of Otterden, Kent. educ. Eton 1635-8; St. John’s, Oxf. 1638; L. Inn 1639. m. Eleanor (d.1685), da. of William Guise of Elmore, Glos., 1da. suc. fa. 1643.1

Offices Held

Gent. of the privy chamber 1641-?46.2

J.p. Wilts. 1646-?48, Mar. 1660-d., sheriff 1650-1, commr. for assessment Aug. 1660-d.


Washington’s grandfather, a younger son of the Lancashire branch of the family, became registrar of Chancery and sat for Maidstone in the first Parliament of James I. His father, who inherited the office, bought Garsdon, two miles from Malmesbury in 1631. He obeyed the King’s summons to Oxford during the Civil War, and died there. Although Washington himself was made a j.p. by the Long Parliament in 1646, his father’s record and his estate, estimated at £1,200 p.a., made him a natural target for the informers. It was alleged in 1649 that he had provided four men and horses for the royal army and had himself borne arms at Newbury, where his horse was ‘shot off at the chine’. He did not compound, but on visiting London to sit for his portrait in 1656 he dutifully reported himself to the authorities as a lodger in Lely’s house, and paid £50 for his decimation ‘as a testimony of his good affection to the state’. He was returned for Malmesbury at the general election of 1661. An inactive Member of the Cavalier Parliament he was named to the committee of elections and privileges and to two others of minor importance in the opening session. He died on 17 Jan. 1662 and was buried at Garsdon, the last of the Wiltshire branch.3

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: Basil Duke Henning


  • 1. C. A. Hoppin, Washington Ancestry, i. 54, 71-72; Wilts. N. and Q. vii. 487.
  • 2. Carlisle, Privy Chamber, 144.
  • 3. Wilts. N. and Q. vii. 5; Cal. Comm. Adv. Money, 945, 1081; Add 34014, p. 46; CSP Dom. 1656-7, pp. 21, 158.