GOODRICKE, Sir John, 1st Bt. (1617-70), of Ribston, Yorks.

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



1661 - 10 Nov. 1670

Family and Education

b. 20 Apr. 1617, 7th but 1st surv. s. of Sir Henry Goodricke, and bro. of Francis Goodricke. educ. Jesus, Camb. 1633; Aberdeen 1635; travelled abroad (France) 1636-8. m. (1) 7 Oct. 1641, Catherine (d. Aug. 1644), da. and coh. of Stephen Norcliffe, counsellor at law, of York, 1s.; (2) c.1635, Elizabeth (d.1691), da. of Alexander Smith of Stutton, Suff., wid. of William, 3rd Visct. Fairfax of Emly [I], of Gilling Castle, Yorks., 1s. suc. fa. 1641; cr. Bt. 14 Aug. 1641; kntd. Nov. 1641.2

Offices Held

Capt. of militia ft. Yorks. 1638, commr. of array 1642; j.p. (W. Riding) July 1660-d., dep. lt. c. Aug. 1660-d.; commr. for assessment (W. Riding) Sept. 1660-9, (N. Riding) 1660-9, York 1663-9, corporations, Yorks. 1662-3, loyal and indigent officers 1662, oyer and terminer, Northern circuit 1665.3

Capt. of ft. 1639; col. of horse (royalist) 1642-3.4


Goodricke’s family originated in Lincolnshire in the 15th century, producing a Member for Grimsby in 1545. But he was descended from a younger son who managed Ribston for the Knights Hospitallers and bought the estate after the dissolution of the monasteries. His father deputized for Sir Thomas Wentworth as president of the council in the north, and sent him to Aberdeen only because the discipline was stricter than in the English universities. He served under Sir Ferdinando Fairfax in the first Bishops’ war, and was regarded as a parliamentary sympathizer as late as the spring of 1642. But he was nominated to the commission of array, raised a regiment of dragoons, and himself took up arms for the King. He was taken prisoner early in 1643, and remained in captivity for almost three years. He compounded for £1,343, but in addition he had to settle £40 p.a. on the Church and to pay £200 to the committee for the advance of money. An efficient estate manager, with all his lands let ‘upon the rack’, he was able to take these modest penalties in his stride.5

Goodricke was returned as knight of the shire at the general election of 1661, and listed as a friend by Lord Wharton. A very active Member of the Cavalier Parliament, he was appointed to 205 committees, including the committee of elections and privileges in six sessions, acted as teller in seven divisions, and made ten recorded speeches. One of the strongest Anglicans in the House, he was instructed to list Members receiving the sacrament at the corporate communion of 26 May. In the opening session he was also named to the committees to bring in a bill to prevent mischief from Quakers and to consider the security bill, the bill restoring bishops to the House of Lords, the corporations bill, the bill of pains and penalties, and the bill for the execution of those under attainder. He helped to manage a conference on this last measure on 19 Feb. 1662, and made two reports on the bill for draining the Isle of Axholme. He carried this bill to the Lords, and also the Stour and Salwarp navigation bill. He was teller on the second reading for the bill to establish a ‘court of conscience’ for small claims in the London area, and was appointed to the committee. He also took the chair for an estate bill. In 1663 he was teller against adjourning the debate on the Declaration of Indulgence, and on the following day was among those ordered to bring in a bill to prevent the further growth of Popery, to consider a petition from the loyal and indigent officers, and to thank the King for his proclamation against Popish priests and Jesuits. In the next session he was named to the committee for the conventicles bill, and was sent to the Lords to ask for a conference. He was teller with his brother for retaining the reference to ecclesiastical courts in the bill. In the supply debate of 25 Nov. 1664 he supported the opposition demand for reversing normal procedure by discussing ways and means first; but in the Oxford session he proposed a gift of £100,000 to the Duke of York, as well as serving on the committee for the five mile bill. In October 1666 he was again among those ordered to make a list of Members receiving the sacrament, and helped to present a joint address for the prohibition of French imports.6

Goodricke opposed thanking the King for the dismissal of Clarendon; but he was appointed to the committees to inquire into restraints on jurors and the sale of Dunkirk and to consider the charges against Mordaunt and the public accounts bill. He spoke repeatedly in defence of the fallen minister, pointing out that a mere ‘design’ to alter the constitution was not treasonable. He gave offence during the debate of 16 Nov. by referring to the people as ‘the beast with many heads’. He moved on 11 Mar. 1668 to lay aside the debate on religious comprehension and refer the matter to Convocation. He said of the dissenters:

These persons would have a superstructure without a foundation. They propose nothing. Though at Hampton Court Conference the authority of truth stopped some men’s mouths, yet the rest were never satisfied.

He was reckoned a friend by Ormonde, and classed by Sir Thomas Osborne among the independent Members who usually voted for supply. He does not appear to have attended the 1669 session, though a new writ was not ordered till 10 Nov. 1670, and his will was proved later in the month.7

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: Paula Watson


  • 1. New writ.
  • 2. C. A. Goodricke, Hist. Goodricke Fam. 17-25, Roll of Alumni (Aberdeen Univ. Studies, i), 12.
  • 3. CSP Dom. 1638-9, pp. 301, 543; HMC 8th Rep. pt. 1 (1881), 275.
  • 4. Goodricke, Ribston, 38, 41.
  • 5. Ribston, 3; CSP Dom. 1638-9, p. 543; J. T. Cliffe, Yorks. Gentry, 46, 334; Royalist Comp. Pprs. (Yorks. Arch. Soc. rec. ser. xv), 73-80.
  • 6. CJ, viii. 247, 296, 369, 374, 380, 384, 440, 565, 643; Add. 32094, f. 25; Bodl. Carte 34, f. 433.
  • 7. Milward, 86, 119-20, 214; Clarendon Impeachment, 29; Grey, i. 41, 130; Ribston, 55.