MUSGRAVE, Philip (1661-89), of Westminster.

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



11 Jan. - 2 July 1689

Family and Education

b. 2I Mar. 1661, xst s. of (Sir) Christopher Musgrave, 4th Bt. by his 1st w.; half-bro. of Joseph Musgrave. educ. Queen’s, Oxf. I676; travelled abroad; Padua 1683. m. 12 Nov. 1685, Mary (d. 25 Feb. 1753), da. of George Legge, 1st Baron Dartmouth, 1s. 1da.1

Offices Held

Clerk of the PC 1684-d.; clerk of deliveries, Ordnance 1685-d.2

Freeman, Kendal 1684; commr. for assessment, Westmld. and Westminster 1689.3


‘Having had all the advantages of education at home and travel abroad’, Musgrave ‘was qualified at the age of 25 years [sic] to serve his Majesty Charles II as clerk of the council, and one of the principal officers of the Ordnance, and his country also in Parliament’. His Privy Council office, carrying a salary of £250 p.a., was purchased from Francis Gwyn, and his father brought him into James II’s Parliament for Appleby. A moderately active Member, he was appointed to nine committees, including those to recommend expunctions from the Journals, and to consider the bills for preventing theft and rapine on the northern borders, providing carriages for the navy and ordnance, and prohibiting the import of gunpowder. After his marriage to the daughter of the master of the Ordnance he became chief clerk to his father-in-law and succeeded Sir William Trumbull as clerk of deliveries at a combined salary of £500 p.a. He was closeted, together with his father, and presumably gave his assent to the repeal of the Test Act and Penal Laws, for he retained office and was recommended as court candidate for Appleby in 1688. But, as the only Protestant in the Ordnance during his father-in-law’s absence on naval service in 1688, he was responsible for foiling the efforts of Edward Hales I to obtain mortars with which to threaten the City. Although he described the collapse of James’s resistance in December as ‘this unhappy revolution’, he urged Lord Dartmouth not to endeavour to obstruct a declaration from the fleet in favour of the Prince of Orange. He was re-elected to the Convention, and according to one list voted to agree with the Lords that the throne was not vacant. His only committees were those ordered to report on the balance of trade with France and to draw up a defence budget. But he died on 2 July 1689 at the early age of 28, and was buried in the Minories chapel. His son, the 5th baronet, sat for Carlisle in Queen Anne’s last Parliament and later for Cumberland as a Tory.4

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Author: Leonard Naylor


  • 1. G. Burton, Life of Sir Philip Musgrave, 40; Le Neve, Mon. Angl. 1680-99, p. 98.
  • 2. CSP Dom. 1684-5, p. 289; 1685, pp. 119, 393; 1689-90, p. 76.
  • 3. HMC Le Fleming, 402.
  • 4. Le Neve, 98; CSP Dom. 1684-5, pp. 281-2; 1687-9, p. 216; 1689-90, p. 76; HMC Downshire, i. 64; Trans. R. Hist. Soc. ser. 5, xxv. 60, 73; Westmld. RO, D/Ry 3093; Cal. Treas. Bks. viii. 1797, 2012; ix. 1305; HMC Dartmouth, iii. 137.