Ashburnham, William d. 1679, royalist, younger brother of John Ashburnham [qv.], was M.P. for Ludgershall in both the parliaments of 1640. In 1644 he was governor of Weymouth, which he kept four months for the king. On 3 June 1654 he was arrested and examined on the charge of complicity in that plot to murder the Protector for which Gerard and Vowel afterwards suffered. He does not appear to have been sent before the high court of justice. After the Restoration he was made cofferer of the household, and was re-elected M.P. for Ludgershall in 1661, sitting till the dissolution of 1678. He was frequently a fellow-guest and a sharer in treasury business with Pepys, who styles him an experienced man and a cavalier. His odd stories are noted, and there was one touching the lease of Ashburnham House from the dean and chapter of Westminster, wherein the devilish covetousness of Dr. Busby was commemorated.

     The Tryal of Colonel Ashburnham, London, 1654
     Pepys's Diary.

Contributor: R. C. B. [Richard Charles Browne]

Published: 1885