HERBERT, Henry (c. 1643-91)

HERBERT, Henry (c. 1643–91)

suc. bro. 9 Dec. 1678 as 4th Bar. HERBERT OF CHIRBURY (CHERBURY) and 4th Bar. Herbert of Castle Island [I]

First sat 23 Dec. 1678; last sat 5 Jan. 1691

MP Montgomery Boroughs Oct. 1665-9 Dec. 1678

b. c.1643, 3rd but 2nd surv. s. of Richard Herbert(later 2nd Bar. Herbert of Chirbury) and Mary, da. of John Egerton, earl of Bridgwater; bro. of Edward Herbert 3rd Bar. Herbert of Chirbury. educ. unknown. m. lic. 14 Dec. 1681, Katherine (d. 24 Apr. 1716), da. of Francis Newport Visct. Newport (later earl of Bradford), s.p. d. 21 Apr. 1691; will 15 Aug. 1690, pr. 6 May 1691.1

Cofferer of the household Mar.–May 1689.2

Custos rot. Mont. Dec. 1679–Jan. 1680, 1689–d.

Ensign, Ft. Gds. [I] 1662–5;3 lt. of ft. Ludlow garrison, 1665–7;4 capt. Admiralty Regt. 1667–80;5 col. 23 Ft. Mar.–Apr. 1689.6

Freeman, Skinners’ Company 1681.7

Associated with: Lymore Lodge, Mont.; rented lodging, Pall Mall, Westminster.8

Likenesses: oil on canvas by G. Soest, Powis Castle; oil on canvas by Sir G. Kneller, Royal Welch Fusiliers Regimental Museum, Caernarfon, Gwynedd; oil on canvas, William Wissing, Weston Park Foundation.

Henry Herbert was the younger surviving grandson of the courtier, diplomat, and philosopher Sir Edward Herbert, Baron Herbert of Castle Island [I] and Baron Herbert of Chirbury. The family, prominent in the Welsh county of Montgomery, was damaged by the civil wars and particularly by the adherence of Herbert’s father to the royalist cause, for which the family stronghold of Montgomery Castle was demolished.9 Both Henry Herbert and his elder brother, Edward, became involved in royalist circles and took part in the western rising led by Sir George Booth, later Baron Delamer, in August 1659.

As a young man Henry Herbert benefitted from his elder brother’s activities in both Ireland and Wales. It was his brother who petitioned the king and the lord lieutenant of Ireland, James Butler, earl of Brecknock (better known as the duke of Ormond [I]), to place Henry in an Irish regiment of Foot Guards.10 In May 1665 Henry was commissioned to serve as a lieutenant in the garrison of Ludlow Castle, where the Council of Wales and the Marches held its courts.11 Again it was his elder brother who later that same year was able to arrange Henry’s return as a burgess for the four Montgomery Boroughs, as part of a campaign to consolidate his electoral interest in the county town of Montgomery by effectively disenfranchising the ‘out-boroughs’ of Welshpool, Llanfyllin, and Llanidoes. When Henry Herbert inherited the barony he continued this campaign even more aggressively but, at his own election in 1665, burgesses of all four boroughs signed the indenture returning him. A later account alleged that the 3rd Baron on this occasion ‘declared our [the outboroughs’] right with much kindness, as he well might by way of retribution for our readiness to serve him’.12

Henry Herbert was never a particularly active member of the Commons. He was evidently more intent on pursuing his military career: in January 1667 he was further commissioned a captain in the Admiral’s Regiment of James Stuart, duke of York; in 1672 he was seconded to the French army; and in May 1673 he served under Sir Edward Spragge at the battle of the Schonveld.13 He returned to the Commons after the Treaty of Westminster, though in March 1678 he was briefly called upon to take his troops to serve in the expeditionary force in Flanders, before his company was formally disbanded in June 1679.14 Throughout this period Henry’s childless elder brother expressed constant anxiety about the risk to the survival of the family line, and its title, by Henry’s dangerous military vocation – and urged him to marry instead.15

By 1678 Herbert was siding increasingly with the ‘country’ party in the Commons.16 This association was only further strengthened when he became the 4th Baron Herbert of Chirbury in the closing weeks of the Cavalier Parliament, upon the death of his brother on 9 Dec. 1678. He first sat in the House on 23 Dec., on which day he joined in the dissent from the resolution that Thomas Osborne, earl of Danby (later duke of Leeds), did not have to withdraw from the chamber following the reading of the articles of impeachment against him. Over the remaining four days of the session Herbert voted against the motion to adhere to the amendment to the disbandment bill which would place the funds collected in the care of the exchequer, and for the commitment of Danby after his impeachment. It may have been at around this time that Anthony Ashley Cooper, earl of Shaftesbury, altered his calculation of the political usefulness of members of the peerage to take account of the death of the 3rd Baron Herbert of Chirbury and the advent of his younger, and more active, brother, whom he deemed to be ‘doubly worthy’.

The new Baron Herbert inherited his brother’s interest in the town of Montgomery and continued his policy of asserting the monopoly of that borough in the choice of Members for Montgomery Boroughs. The by-election to replace Herbert in the borough seat after his elevation to the peerage was held only two days after the dissolution of the Cavalier Parliament, and its result – a clear victory for Edward Vaughan, standing on the right of the out-boroughs – was superseded by the need to call a new election. At the ensuing elections Vaughan won the Montgomery county seat. Herbert and his candidate, Matthew Pryce, took measures to ensure victory over the new advocate for the rights of the out-boroughs, Edward Lloyd of Berthllwyd. Lloyd’s later petition to the election committee asserted that the Montgomery bailiffs, who served as the returning officers, had been ‘influenced by certain great people in the neighbourhood’ when they formally closed the poll of 18 Feb. 1679 after only the votes of the Montgomery burgesses (overwhelmingly for Pryce) had been counted, while Lloyd’s adherents continued to collect sufficient votes from the out-boroughs to make him the victor. Considering the temper of the Commons at that time, it was not surprising that Lloyd’s petition was rejected and Pryce was allowed to sit on the merits of his return.17

Danby was sure that Herbert would be an adversary in the forthcoming Parliament and appears to have entrusted his management to Sir Charles Lyttelton, Herbert’s colonel in the duke of York’s regiment. Herbert was certainly an active and engaged participant of the first Exclusion Parliament, attending 93 per cent of the sitting days in its substantive second session. He was one of only nine peers to subscribe to the protest of 7 Apr. 1679 objecting to the decision to commit John Sidway for the spurious information that he brought against Peter Gunning, bishop of Ely, and a week later he voted in favour of Danby’s attainder. He was named to two select committees, including one on 1 Apr. to consider the bill for freeing the City of London of papists, and to two subcommittees set up by the committee of the whole house, one on 15 Apr. to make the habeas corpus bill more coherent, and the other on 17 Apr. to draw up the names of places in Ireland which were in need of defence from the Catholic threat.18 Following on from the latter committee, on 17 Apr. 1679 Herbert was one of seven peers with landed interests in Ireland who requested the king to order the lord lieutenant there to put the laws against Catholics into effect. Throughout May he joined in many of the large ‘country’ protests: against the rejection of the motion to establish a committee of both Houses to consider the methods of trying Danby and the five Catholic peers; against the decision to try the other peers before Danby; against the initial resolution that the bishops could stay in attendance while the House judged these capital cases; and then against the House’s continuing insistence on and adherence to this resolution.

In the elections following the dissolution of Parliament on 12 July 1679, Pryce was challenged by a more formidable opponent, Sir John Trevor, but Herbert kept tight control; at the election on 6 Oct. the Montgomery bailiffs proclaimed the poll only a quarter of an hour before it was held, and only in Montgomery itself, and not surprisingly returned Pryce. Trevor petitioned, but the partisan elections committee made no report on the case, and it was lost at the dissolution of the Parliament on 18 Jan. 1681.19

While Charles II continuously delayed the convening of this Parliament, Herbert was part of the group of nobles, led by Shaftesbury, who met weekly at the Swan Tavern in Fleet Street to plan the large petitioning drives and extravagant anti-Catholic demonstrations which marked the winter of 1679–80.20 In late November this group of peers all attended the trial of Thomas Knox and John Lane, court collaborators and servants of Danby, to see the jury find them guilty of trying to fix a trumped-up charge of sodomy on Titus Oates.21 These same peers were among the 16 peers who signed the petition to Charles II calling for an immediate summons of the Parliament, and Herbert was one of the nine who personally attended the king with the petition on 7 Dec. 1679.22 For this involvement in the petition, and in the opposition movement in general, early in 1680 Herbert lost his commission in the duke of York’s regiment and his place as custos rotulorum of Montgomeryshire, to which latter post he had been appointed only a few weeks previously.23

Herbert attended the House on three of the days of prorogation by which Charles II kept the House in abeyance, and he was there when the House finally convened to conduct business on 21 Oct. 1680, thereafter being present on all but one of that Parliament’s sitting days. He was named to three select committees but his main concern was the bill for Exclusion, which he supported through his vote and his protest against the House’s rejection of it on 15 November. Eight days later he voted for the motion to establish a joint committee of the two Houses to consider the safety of the nation, and the following day, 24 Nov., he was added to the committee for the bill for a Protestant Association. On 7 Dec. 1680 he voted William Howard, Viscount Stafford, guilty, and in the days following took an active part in the scrutiny of the lists of suspect Catholics in the Marcher counties who were to be expelled by the bill ‘for the better securing the present peace of this kingdom’.24 In the final days of the session he entered his protests against the unwillingness of the House to put the question whether Lord Chief Justice Sir William Scroggs should be committed, or even suspended, while impeachment charges were pending against him.

Within a week of the dissolution of Parliament on 18 Jan. 1681, Herbert had joined 15 of his Whig colleagues in signing a petition to the king urging him that the following Parliament should be held in Westminster.25 Herbert and his allies among the Montgomery burgesses then used the same techniques of secrecy and collusion as formerly to ensure that Matthew Pryce was returned for Montgomery Boroughs for the Oxford Parliament. This time Trevor’s petition never even got before the elections committee before the Parliament was dissolved.26 There is some indication that Herbert was involved in the elections of Shropshire as well; there the predominant interest was that of his second cousin (once removed), Viscount Newport.27 This connection with Newport only grew tighter after Herbert married Newport’s daughter Lady Katherine Newport in December 1681.

Herbert, with Ford Grey, 3rd Baron Grey of Warke (later earl of Tankerville), his close colleague at this time, was part of the large group of Whigs who accompanied James Scott, duke of Monmouth, to the Oxford Parliament in a show of force.28 Herbert, considered by Danby an enemy to his petition for bail, first took his seat on 22 Mar. 1681 and attended for a further four days until he and the other core members of the Whigs protested against the House’s resolution to proceed against Edward Fitzharris by common law rather than by impeachment.29 He continued his interest in Fitzharris well after this protest and the ensuing abrupt dissolution of the Parliament. He was part of the ‘very great auditory’ who attended the preliminary hearings in Fitzharris’ trial in the king’s bench in early May and later formed part of the ‘great concourse of persons of quality’ who attended the ‘so expected trial’ on 9 June 1681, at which Fitzharris was found guilty of treason.30 Herbert was also one of the petitioners in May for a royal pardon for the violent Whig Philip Herbert, 7th earl of Pembroke, indicted for manslaughter for the second time.31 He was one of the ‘persons of that faction’ who visited Shaftesbury in the Tower after his arrest on 2 July, and one of those present to hear the London grand jury’s ignoramus verdict in the indictment of Stephen College and the unsuccessful application for bail by Shaftesbury and his fellow prisoner William Howard, 3rd Baron Howard of Escrick, on 8 July, the last day of the law term.32

When the new term commenced in October, Herbert once again threw himself into political activity. Most immediately galling to him was the betrayal of a former associate, Theophilus Hastings, 7th earl of Huntingdon, previously one of the more ardent of the Exclusionists. On 21 Oct. 1681 Huntingdon kissed the king’s hands, supposedly pronouncing that his change of heart was because he ‘had by experience found, that they who promoted the bill of Exclusion were for the subversion of monarchy itself’.33 When these words were printed in Nathaniel Thompson’s True Domestick Intelligence, Monmouth and his two loyal followers, Grey of Warke and Herbert, demanded a published retraction from Huntingdon, which he refused to give. Huntingdon did however extract a printed apology from Thompson for being too free with publishing his reputed words. A broadsheet battle broke out when the Whig peers published their own defence and apology on 2 Nov., with obscure aspersions on Huntingdon, only to be met by a more belligerent printed answer from Huntingdon emphasizing his honour and making vague threats against his erstwhile allies. The matter escalated when Herbert reaffixed the Whig response which had been torn down by two of Huntingdon’s kinsmen, Knyvett and Ferdinando Hastings. Herbert proclaimed that he would challenge anyone who dared to take it down again. John Parker, ‘a brisk, young man’ and officer in the Life Guards, who had previously been a captain with Herbert in the duke of York’s regiment, ripped down the offending paper, but he and Herbert were prevented from fighting their duel by the Life Guards. Many years later, when Parker was a colonel and trying to ingratiate himself with the Jacobite court, he was still prepared to hark back to this act of youthful loyalty to the crown. Huntingdon’s two kinsmen were also determined to remove Herbert’s poster and take up his challenge, but, finding it already gone, instead announced that they would challenge anybody who dared to assert that they had asked the three peers’ forgiveness for their first act of vandalism.34

On 28 Nov. 1681, only a few days after his abortive duel with Parker, Herbert was present at king’s bench when Shaftesbury and Howard of Escrick were brought in on their writs of habeas corpus. Both were bailed, and Herbert stood as one of Howard’s sureties.35 Herbert remained at the heart of the Whig agitation against the royal brothers, supporting Monmouth’s claims for the following few months, and on 31 Mar. 1682 the king ordered the lord mayor of London not to entertain the Whig leaders, listing Monmouth, Shaftesbury, Grey, and Herbert by name as those who, already persona non grata at the royal court, were likewise not to ‘receive any caresses or countenance’ from the corporation. Yet when Monmouth was arrested upon reaching London in September after his triumphant progress through Cheshire, he was initially paid a public visit by Herbert, Shaftesbury, and William Russell, styled Lord Russell, among others, to the obvious displeasure of the king.36 Howard of Escrick’s later testimony, made in the wake of his capture after the Rye House Plot, suggests that Herbert was at the periphery of the plotting against the royal brothers and that in October 1682 Shaftesbury had claimed that Herbert and Colonel John Rumsey would be able to raise 10,000 ‘brisk boys’ from among the London apprentices during the planned uprising.37 Herbert not surprisingly fell under suspicion after the discovery of the plot, and appears to have been briefly placed in custody for it. He vigorously denied the allegations and relied on his second cousin Admiral Arthur Herbert, (later earl of Torrington), and his father-in-law, Newport, to defend him at court. In 1684 Newport had cause to complain of harsh words by Herbert, especially after having ‘travailed’ so much in Herbert’s defence.38

Despite these problems, Herbert was even more ambitious at the elections for James II’s Parliament, when he discarded Pryce (who was furious about being so casually let go) and put forward William Williams against his own kinsman, the moderate Tory Charles Herbert of Aston, elder brother of Arthur Herbert, instead. Williams had been Speaker of the Commons during the previous two Parliaments and was ‘a person reported much to be disgusted by the king’.39 According to a contemporary account of the election of 4 Apr. 1685, the Montgomery bailiffs ‘so wisely surprised us in by a mock, indeed a private proclaiming the time of election’ that many ‘heard it not’. This time the petitions of Charles Herbert and the out-boroughs, which claimed that the Montgomery bailiffs had acted under pressure from ‘some great persons in that neighbourhood, upon whom they had dependence’, were received more favourably; Williams’ election was declared void and the Commons framed resolutions affirming the right of the Montgomeryshire out-boroughs in future elections. The new election had clearly taken place by 10 July 1685, for on that date Herbert of Chirbury wrote a letter to Williams accounting for his decision to support the election of Charles Herbert, who had promised to work to stop the quo warranto proceedings against the town and to have the fair recreated, ‘and that he would spend his moneys at Montgomery in treating his troop of voters there’.40

Herbert of Chirbury did not attend James II’s short Parliament in 1685 himself, nor any of the subsequent prorogations of Parliament before its dissolution on 2 July 1687. He retreated from the English capital, where he had resided in lodgings on Pall Mall for the first half of the 1680s, to his Welsh house of Lymore Lodge in Montgomeryshire.41 However, he was kept informed of social and political events in the capital through the letters of his first cousin John Egerton, then styled Viscount Brackley (later 3rd earl of Bridgwater), and of his wife’s paternal uncle (and his own second cousin) Andrew Newport, who had sat for the county of Montgomery in the Cavalier Parliament on the Herbert of Chirbury interest. In December 1685 Newport was entrusted with conveying Herbert’s proxy to an unidentifiable ‘noble person’, who at first objected that ‘it signified nothing, since the Act for the Test unqualifies in terminis any peer to sit or give a proxy till he has taken the oaths and subscribed the Test’, but eventually complied with the request, though by that time Parliament had already sat for business for the last time in James II’s reign. Newport also approached this ‘noble person’ to help in Herbert’s request for the office of chief forester of Snowdon Forest, formerly held by his elder brother, and which Herbert thought was his by right.42 In March 1686 Newport had to report that when ‘your great friend’ approached the king about the patent for the office, James II answered ‘that you [Herbert of Chirbury] having made a very unsuitable return to his Majesty’s former kindnesses to you in your brother’s lifetime, he wondered you would ask them, further saying, you should not have them till you behaved yourself better towards him’. To Newport’s suggestion that Herbert make his peace with the king, Herbert answered:

Since I cannot obtain what I look on as my inheritance but by doing something unhonest, I will patiently lose not only that, but the remainder of my estate and life also, rather than turn purchaser at a vile rate. And I hope God will fortify my frailties so far as that I shall maintain this resolution to my end. Those are the morals of the true Protestant you have so often contemned for his unthriving constancy.43

Throughout 1687–8 Herbert was consistently regarded as an opponent of the king’s policies. He made his views very clear in April 1687 when he wrote to Arthur Herbert upon the admiral’s dismissal from office for his refusal to countenance the repeal of the Test after an intensive ‘closeting’ session with the king:

you have added undeniable virtue to the province of your known bravery and made your dominion over men greater than ever it was; particularly you have reduced my kindness, which formerly was a gift bestowed, to be now a tribute justly due for your worth. … your friends can justify you have done like a gallant Englishman.44

Herbert of Chirbury was an important figure in Wales and the Marcher counties during the events of 1688. Andrew Newport called upon him, as a major landowner in Shropshire, to take part in the meeting of gentry in that county scheduled for 27 Sept. to determine the candidate for the mooted elections.45 Herbert of Chirbury ensured that Arthur Herbert’s brother, the sitting member Charles Herbert, was again nominated for Montgomery Boroughs for James II’s proposed Parliament. In December 1688 Herbert of Chirbury raised Williamite forces in Wales and captured Ludlow Castle in Shropshire, to which he appointed Charles Herbert as governor, before then moving on to occupy Hereford. William of Orange thanked him for his actions on his behalf, but discouraged Herbert from attempting the long march to join his army, advising him instead to keep control of the Marcher territories and to ‘encourage’ the inhabitants to enter into the Association and to contribute money to a loan for the increasing charge of the campaign.46

Charles Herbert was returned ‘unanimously’ to the Montgomery Boroughs seat for the Convention, while Herbert of Chirbury was from the beginning a keen supporter of William of Orange, supporting throughout late January and early February 1689 the motion that James II had ‘abdicated’ and that ‘the throne is thereby vacant’. After he had thus helped to settle the disposition of the crown, he continued to sit diligently in the Convention, coming to a total of 94 per cent of the meetings of its first session and to just under three-quarters of those of its winter session. In February 1689 he was added to the select committees to investigate the death of Arthur Capell, earl of Essex, and to consider methods to prevent Catholics staying in London, and on 1 Mar. he was named to the small group of seven peers assigned to draft an address to the king on the pursuit of further enemies of the regime. Later, on 15 Nov. 1689, his first day back in the House after the prorogation, he was added to the committee for inspections examining the judicial ‘murders’ of many of his former Whig colleagues, and on 7 Dec. was placed on the committee to examine the evidence for James II’s attempt to suborn witnesses. Overall he was nominated to far more select committees in the Convention than ever before – 46 in total – and on 19 Dec., having returned to the House just four days previously, he was especially placed on all select committees at that point established. However he never chaired or reported from any of these committees, nor was he ever appointed to manage or report a conference with the House of Commons.

In late May and early June 1689 Herbert was active in support of the bill to reverse the two judgments of perjury against Titus Oates, and in the final days of July he further protested against the House’s amendments to the bill which would prevent Oates from ever testifying in court again. On 25 June he registered his opposition to the decision to uphold the exchequer’s reversal of an original judgment in favour of the Whig Sir Samuel Barnardiston. Charles Cornwallis, 3rd Baron Cornwallis, registered his proxy with Herbert on 13 June, the only occasion on which either of these Whig peers gave or received a proxy. However Cornwallis was actually continuously present in the House from the day of the proxy’s registration, which would have rendered it inoperative, although the proxy may have been used in the ten days from 13 July when Cornwallis was formally excused from the House. On 23 Nov. 1689 Herbert subscribed his protest against the decision to reject a proviso to the Bill of Rights which would require the approval of both Houses to any royal pardon which could be pleaded in case of impeachment. He also protested on 23 Jan. 1690 against the decision to leave out of a clause in the bill to restore corporations to their previous rights the statement that the surrender of charters under Charles II and James II had been ‘illegal and void’. During the Convention he became heavily involved in the work of the subcommittee for the Journal, perhaps owing to the influence of his cousin Bridgwater, the leading member of the committee. Often in the select company of only Bridgwater, North, and Grey, Herbert subscribed his name to 21 daily entries in the manuscript account of the House’s proceedings during the Convention.

Herbert was quickly rewarded for his exertions for the Williamite cause but seemed strangely unwilling to exercise his new honours. On 8 Mar. 1689 the force he had led to capture Ludlow Castle formed the nucleus of a new regiment that he was to raise for the Irish service (which later became the Royal Welch Fusiliers), but as early as 10 Apr. he resigned his colonelcy to Charles Herbert, who had by this time become his leading lieutenant and ally.47 Herbert of Chirbury was also made cofferer of the royal household in March, but by May had entered into an arrangement with his father-in-law whereby Newport paid him £1,500 a year for the privilege of exercising the office, in tandem with his other post as treasurer to the household.48 In August 1689 Herbert was reappointed custos rotulorum of Montgomeryshire and this local office he kept until his death less than two years later.49

Herbert found his local influence in Montgomeryshire even further enhanced by the time of the election to William III’s first Parliament by the outlawry in February 1690 of the Catholic and Jacobite William Herbert, marquess of Powis, the electoral patron of the out-boroughs of Welshpool and Llanfyllin.50 In the 1690 election the townsmen of Welshpool even turned to Herbert of Chirbury, rather than their nominal patron, for his recommendation. His nominee was the sitting member Charles Herbert, on the encouragement of William III’s favourite, Torrington (formerly Arthur Herbert), who had specifically asked Herbert of Chirbury not to ‘forsake’ his brother. Herbert of Chirbury still suggested to the bailiffs of Montgomery that the Montgomery burgesses should return to ‘their old custom’ of returning the candidate from that borough alone, without the out-boroughs, and he even contemplated submitting two returns, one from Montgomery alone and the other from the shire town and the out-boroughs together. Perhaps suspicious, the out-boroughs did consider putting up their own candidate, Herbert of Chirbury’s nephew Francis Herbert of Dolgeog, but this plan, which Herbert of Chirbury saw as an ‘ungrateful’ act, came to nothing. He was at pains to reassure the Montgomery burgesses that Col. Charles Herbert would be given leave to return from his military service in Ireland to take his seat, and eventually he was returned by an indenture signed by the electors of Montgomery and the ‘out-burgesses’ together. For the remainder of the reigns of William and Anne the franchise was exercised ‘by the burgesses of Montgomery promiscuously with those of the out-boroughs’.51

The government manager, the marquess of Carmarthen (as Danby had become), considered Herbert a ‘court lord’ in the run-up to the first meeting of the new Parliament, when Herbert missed only one of the first session’s 54 sittings. He dutifully attended three of the days of prorogation in the late summer of 1690, but did not arrive for the second session until more than three weeks after its commencement on 2 Oct. 1690. He then went on to be present at a further 45 sittings, with an attendance rate of 60.5 per cent. His activity in the first two sessions of the Parliament appears to have been largely confined to his nominations to 43 select committees and to his monitoring and approving, with Bridgwater, the accounts of the House’s procedures in the Journal, which he did through his signature on 11 occasions. He also entered his protests against the decision to agree with the committee of the whole house’s compromise wording, which stated that the acts of the Convention ‘were and are good laws, to all intents and purposes whatsoever’ (on 5 Apr. 1690), and against the resolution not to allow counsel for the City of London more time to present their case in favour of the bill to restore the former charter of the Corporation (on 13 May).

In the October 1690 session he was particularly interested and involved in the proceedings concerning the now disgraced Torrington, of whose fate he had been kept informed by another kinsman, probably his cousin Henry Herbert of Ribbesford, later Baron Herbert of Chirbury, who lamented that ‘I did not think any of our name should be put into ballad stanza, but so it is’.52 On 30 Oct. Herbert was one of the 17 peers who protested against the passage of the Admiralty Commissioners bill, a government measure designed to enable the commissioners to exercise all the powers of the lord high admiral, including convening a court martial against Torrington. On that same day, Herbert joined seven other peers in the protest against the resolution to discharge James Cecil, 4th earl of Salisbury, and Henry Mordaunt, 2nd earl of Peterborough.

Herbert died on 21 Apr. 1691, through ‘violent vomiting and a secret issuing of corruption, blood and even his inwards, in nature of a diabetes’.53 At his death the peerage was extinguished. It was reinstated only three years later for the benefit of his cousin, Henry Herbert of Ribbesford. By his will of August 1690, Herbert of Chirbury left his wife her jointure estate and placed the remainder of the estate in the care of trustees to raise portions of £6,000 each for his two unmarried sisters, after which the landed estate was to go to his nephew Francis Herbert of Oakley Park and his successors. Francis Herbert’s own son Henry Arthur Herbert, later earl of Powis, was able in the space of a few short years in the 1740s to coalesce almost all the estates of the many branches of the widespread Herbert family – the Herberts of Bromefield and Oakley Park, of Chirbury, and of Powis Castle – to become one of the richest men of 18th-century Britain.


  • 1 TNA, PROB 11/405.
  • 2 Morrice, Entring Bk, v. 54; CSP Dom. 1689–90, pp. 85, 86.
  • 3 HMC Ormonde, i. 240, ii. 186; Bodl. Carte 31, ff. 600–1.
  • 4 CSP Dom. 1664-5, p. 363.
  • 5 CSP Dom. 1666–7, p. 453; NLW, Powis Castle mss, D24/1/36; Sidney Diary, i. 253.
  • 6 Add. 70014, f. 169; HMC Lords, ii. 169.
  • 7 Wadmore, Some Account of the Worshipful Company of Skinners, 197.
  • 8 Herbert Correspondence, ed. W.J. Smith, 254–339 (nos. 449–654), passim; TNA, PRO 30/53/8, passim.
  • 9 TNA, PRO 30/53/7/43, 62, 64; PRO 30/53/11/12, 16.
  • 10 CSP Dom. 1660–1, p. 106; Bodl. Carte 31, ff. 600–1; Epistolary Curiosities, ed. R. Warner, i. no. 38.
  • 11 Dalton, Army Lists, i. 52; CSP Dom. 1664–5, p. 363.
  • 12 Bull. of Board of Celtic Studs. xx. 294; HP Commons, 1669–90, i. 516–17.
  • 13 Dalton, Army Lists, i. 85; CSP Dom. 1666–7, p. 453; HEHL, EL 8109, 8451–8455; Hatton Corresp. 66, 73; Herbert Corresp. 203–5 (nos. 351, 352, 354); TNA, PRO 30/53/7/95, 96, 97, 101, 104, 106–8; Epistolary. Curiosities, i. nos. 58–59.
  • 14 CSP Dom. 1678, p. 47; 1679–80, pp. 165, 166.
  • 15 Epistolary Curiosities, i. nos. 51, 52, 55, 57; Herbert Corresp. nos. 357–8, 360; TNA, PRO 30/53/7/107; HEHL, EL 8109.
  • 16 Epistolary Curiosities, i. nos. 68, 72.
  • 17 Bull. of Board of Celtic Studs xx. 295; HP Commons, 1660–90, i. 517.
  • 18 Bodl. Carte 72, f. 477.
  • 19 Bull. of Board of Celtic Studs. xx. 296; HP Commons, 1660–90, i. 517.
  • 20 Haley, Shaftesbury, 559.
  • 21 Ibid. 557; HMC Ormonde, n.s. iv. 561.
  • 22 HMC Hastings, iv. 302; Morrice, Ent’ring Bk, ii. 210; Domestick Intelligence, no. 45 (9 Dec. 1679).
  • 23 Sidney Diary, i. 253; HMC Ormonde, n.s. iv. 574; CSP Dom. 1679–80, p. 379; A Catalogue of the Names of All His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace (1680), 34; HMC Lords, i. 185; Sainty, Lords Lieutenants.
  • 24 HMC Lords, i. 228–9.
  • 25 Vox Patriae (1681), 6–7; CSP Dom. 1680–1, pp. 146–7.
  • 26 Bull. of Board of Celtic Studs. xx. 296; HP Commons, 1660–90, i. 517.
  • 27 Herbert Corresp. no. 451.
  • 28 F. Grey, The Secret History of the Rye-House Plot (1754), 10.
  • 29 HMC Ormonde, n.s. iv. 11–12; Bodl. Carte 79, f. 188.
  • 30 Luttrell, Brief Relation, i. 80, 95–96; Beinecke Lib. Osborne mss 6, Box 2, folder 41.
  • 31 TNA, SP 29/415/192.
  • 32 Luttrell, Brief Relation, i. 106, 108; HMC Ormonde, n.s. vi. 95–96.
  • 33 Morrice, Ent’ring Bk, ii. 289; CSP Dom. 1680–1, pp. 545–7.
  • 34 HMC Ormonde, n.s. vi. 215–17, 232–3, 236; Morrice, Ent’ring Bk, ii. 290–1, 293; CSP Dom. 1680–1, pp. 545–7, 572; HMC Hastings, ii. 173; HMC Stuart, ii. 512.
  • 35 Luttrell, Brief Relation, i. 147; Morrice, Ent’ring Bk, ii. 294.
  • 36 CSP Dom. 1682, pp. 147, 429, 536; Bodl. Carte 103, f. 383.
  • 37 CSP Dom. July–Sept. 1683, p. 100; 1683–4, p. 378; Haley, Shaftesbury, 714.
  • 38 TNA, PRO 30/53/8/3, 6.
  • 39 TNA, PRO 30/53/8/10; Bodl. Rawl. Letters 48, no. 1.
  • 40 Bulletin of Board of Celtic Studs. xx. 297–8; HP Commons, 1660–90, i. 517–18; TNA, PRO 30/53/8/11.
  • 41 Herbert Corresp. nos. 449–513, 516–654; TNA, PRO 30/53/8/2–63.
  • 42 TNA, PRO 30/53/8, 8–69; PRO 30/53/11, 29–36.
  • 43 TNA, PRO 30/53/8/25, 26.
  • 44 TNA, PRO 30/53/8/42.
  • 45 TNA, PRO 30/53/8/69.
  • 46 Add. 70014, f. 119; HMC Portland, iii. 421; Luttrell, Brief Relation, i. 483; Morrice, Ent’ring Bk, iv. 371, 376.
  • 47 Dalton, Army Lists, iii. 7, 70; Add. 70014, f. 169.
  • 48 Morrice, Ent’ring Bk, v. 54; CSP Dom. 1689–90, pp. 85, 86; Add. 70270, R. Harley to his wife.
  • 49 Sainty, ‘Custodes rotulorum’; CSP Dom. 1689–90, p. 210.
  • 50 CSP Dom. 1689–90, pp. 425–6; 1690–1, p. 46; HMC Finch, ii. 357–8.
  • 51 HP Commons, 1690–1715, ii. 811–12; Herbert Corresp. nos. 682–9; Bull. of Board of Celtic Studs. xx. 298.
  • 52 TNA, PRO 30/53/8/85.
  • 53 Add. 70015, f. 55; HMC Portland, iii. 463.