FLEMING, Henry (c.1663-1713), of Edmondsham, Dorset

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1690 - 1698
4 Jan. 1700 - 1708

Family and Education

b. c.1663, 2nd but 1st surv. s. of Edward Fleming of Edmondsham by a da. of Thomas Fleming of North Stoneham, Hants.  educ. L. Inn 1682, called 1694; St. John’s, Oxf. matric. 6 Apr. 1682, aged 18. unmsuc. fa. by 1682.1

Offices Held


Fleming was returned for St. Germans by his uncle Daniel Eliot*, the patron of the borough. He was classed as a Tory by the Marquess of Carmarthen (Sir Thomas Osborne†) in March 1690, and in December the same year Carmarthen listed Fleming as a likely supporter in the event of a Commons attack upon his ministerial position. In April 1691 Robert Harley* classed him as a Court supporter. On 28 Dec. 1693 he was granted a two-week leave of absence. His only notable activity in the 1693–4 session was on 26 Mar. 1694 when he told against imposing a duty on the coastal trade in England and Wales. In the following session Fleming was ordered into custody for being absent at a call of the House on 14 Feb. 1695. He was discharged four days later. At the 1695 election he was again returned unopposed, and in early 1696 he demonstrated his opposition to the predominantly Whig ministry. He was forecast as likely to oppose the Court in the divisions of 31 Jan. 1696 on the proposed council of trade, initially refused to sign the Association, and was listed as having voted in March against fixing the price of guineas at 22s. On 25 Nov. he voted against the attainder of Sir John Fenwick†. Granted a leave of absence on 10 Mar. 1697, Fleming made no further contribution to this Parliament and he did not stand at the 1698 election. A comparison of the old and new Commons dating from September that year listed him as a Country supporter ‘out’ of the new Parliament. He regained his St. Germans seat at a by-election in January 1700, and held it for the four succeeding Parliaments. In December 1701 Harley classed him as a Tory, and he was listed as having favoured the motion of 26 Feb. 1702 vindicating the Commons’ proceedings in the impeachments of the Whig ministers. His first significant act in the 1702 Parliament was to tell, on 19 Dec. 1702, against the second reading of an engrossed clause to the land tax bill. On 15 Jan. 1703 the Commons was informed that ‘some words of heat’ had passed between Fleming and Lord Coningsby (Thomas*), and ‘they were enjoined by the House not to prosecute the same’. The following month, on the 13th, Fleming voted against the Lords’ amendments to the bill enlarging the time for taking the Abjuration. His previously consistent Tory sympathies were no doubt what led in October 1704 to his being forecast as a probable supporter of the Tack, but he did not vote on 28 Nov. for this measure. However, it was probably the Member for St. Germans (rather than the Westmorland Whig William Fleming) who told on 14 Mar. 1705 for the committee of the whole’s amendment to the bill for suppressing the growth of popery, imposing upon occasional conformists a fine of £100 for every time they attended a Dissenting meeting. An analysis of the 1705 Parliament described Fleming as a ‘Churchman’, and on 25 Oct. he voted against the Court candidate for Speaker. He made little further impact upon the records of this Parliament, but in early 1708 an analysis of the Commons classed Fleming as a Tory. At the election later that year Edward Eliot*, who had succeeded his uncle as patron of St. Germans, chose not to support Fleming. He did not stand for election again, though in 1710 the ‘Hanover list’ mistakenly noted his return and classed Fleming as a Tory. He died in 1713, his will leaving small bequests to numerous relations and godchildren, including Browne Willis*, who had married Fleming’s cousin.2

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Burke, LG (1937), 793; VCH Hants, iii. 479; C. S. Gilbert, Hist. Surv. Cornw. i. 449.
  • 2. Gilbert, 449; PCC 273 Leeds.