RIVERS, George (c.1553-1630), of Chafford, Kent.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
Available from Boydell and Brewer




Family and Education

b. c.1553, s. of Sir John Rivers of Chafford by Elizabeth, da. of Sir George Barne. educ. ?Trinity, Camb. 1571; M. Temple 1574. m. Frances, da. of William Bowyer of Suss., at least 4s. 1da. suc. fa. 1584. Kntd. 1605.1

Offices Held

J.p. Kent from c.1583, Suss. from c.1594, q. 1601.


Rivers’s maternal grandfather and his father were lord mayors of London. Rivers himself, however (though he made an unsuccessful application to succeed William Lambarde at the alienations office in 1601) was a country gentleman and agricultural improver, with estates in Kent and Sussex. Chafford, near Penshurst, had been acquired by his family in Henry VIII’s reign, and Withyham was near an early seat of the Sackvilles. Rivers remained on close terms with this family, being an executor both of Robert, 2nd Earl of Dorset (his ‘faithful and dear friend’) and Richard the 3rd Earl. It was no doubt through the Sackvilles that Rivers came to be returned at East Grinstead to the last two Elizabethan Parliaments, and in 1606 he obtained for himself a share in the borough. Though both Parliaments are comparatively well documented, Rivers left no mark upon the records. He made his will by January 1630, ‘feeling age creeping on’ and died 20 Feb. that year.2

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: J.E.M.


  • 1. C142/205/200, 468/89; PCC 37 Butts, 52 Scroope; E. Kimber and R. Johnson, Baronetage, i. 211; A. B. Beaven, Aldermen, ii. 37, 170, 173.
  • 2. HMC Hatfield, viii. 172; Hasted, Kent, iii. 250-1; Arch. Cant. xlvi. 59; APC, 1619-21, pp. 92, 203; 1623-5, p. 200; 1626, p. 26; CSP Dom. 1595-7, pp. 305-6; 1603-10, p. 338; 1627-8, p. 449; 1628-9, pp. 180, 586, 595; Beaven, ii. 170; PCC 23 Dorset, 52 Scroope; Lansd. 92, ff. 43 seq.; A. Collins, Sidney State Pprs. ii. 231; C142/312/128; Neale, Commons, 73; Statutes of the Realm, iv. p. lxxvii; Wards 7/79/161.