LYSTER, Richard (?1772-1819), of Rowton Castle, Salop.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



27 May 1814 - 3 May 1819

Family and Education

b. ?1772, 1st s. of Richard Lyster of Rowton Castle by Mary, da. of Rev. John Rodd of Barton on the Heath, Oxon. m. 10 Dec. 1794, Penelope Anne, da. of Henry Price of Knighton, Rad., 4s. 2da. suc. fa. 1807.

Offices Held

Lt. 30 Ft. 1791; capt. 93 Ft. 1793; maj. 22 Drag. 1794, ret. 1795; capt. Salop supp. militia 1797; lt.-col. Salop militia 1803, col. 2 regt. 1804-8, centre regt. 1808.

Sheriff, Salop 1812-13.


Lyster’s family had been settled at Rowton since the 15th century. His grandfather had represented the county and Shrewsbury. His father offered himself for the county when a vacancy was expected in 1799. After previously offering himself in 1805 and then withdrawing, Lyster was returned for Shrewsbury following a contest on a vacancy in 1814, his own local standing being reinforced by the sponsorship of the Hills of Hawkstone. He had informed Lord Liverpool of his ambition for the seat in 1812 and received a civil reply. An obituary notice referred to his ‘genuine independence’ in Parliament, which ‘endeared him to the great body of his constituents’.1 He certainly voted with opposition for the reduction of the army estimates, 6 Mar. 1816, (but against their recommittal on 8 Mar.); against the renewal of the property tax, 18 Mar.; on the composition of the finance committee, 7 Feb. 1817; against the civil services compensation bill, 19 May; on the Speaker’s election, 2 June 1817, and on the prosecution of state prisoners in Scotland, 10 Feb. 1818. He was, however, in the majority on the Admiralty secretary’s salary, 17 Feb., and for the suspension of habeas corpus, 23 June 1817. He condoned the imprisonment of radical booksellers, 21 May 1818. He was opposed to Catholic relief, 9 May 1817. At the election of 1818 he was reproached on the hustings for being a friend of government in contrast with his colleague Bennet: a man of few words in public, who never figured in debate, he insisted that he was independent. The government had nevertheless wooed him.2 Returned again, unopposed, he voted with opposition on the motion to add Brougham to the Bank of England committee, 8 Feb. 1819, and was described on this occasion as one of several ‘government men’ who ‘voted against them’ by Charles Williams Wynn.3 On 1 Mar. he took six weeks’ leave of absence and does not appear to have resumed his seat.

Lyster, who died 3 May 1819 in his 48th year, was described as ‘a peculiar loss to the county of Salop’: having served under the Duke of York in Flanders, he had shown a keen interest in the county militia. His character was evidently ‘exemplary’.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: R. G. Thorne


  • 1. NLW, Pitchford Hall mss, Jenkinson to Liverpool, 5 Oct. 1812; Gent. Mag. (1819), i. 584.
  • 2. The Late Elections (1818), 276; Add. 38366, f. 135.
  • 3. Buckingham, Regency, ii. 302.