Sir John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass

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John Shute Barrington (Shute)

Birthdate: (56)
Birthplace: Theobalds, Hertfordshire, England
Death: December 14, 1734 (56)
Becket, Berkshire, England
Place of Burial: Shrivenham, Berkshire, England
Immediate Family:

Son of Benjamin Shute and Elizabeth Shute
Husband of Lady Anne, Viscountess Barrington of Ardglass
Father of Elizabeth Barrington; Hon. Francis Barrington; William Wildman Barrington-Shute, 2nd Viscount Barrington of Ardglass; Maj.-Gen. Hon. John Barrington; Hon. Daines Barrington and 5 others
Brother of Samuel Shute, Governor of the Provinces of Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire and Anne Shute

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About Sir John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass

Family and Education b. 1678, 3rd s. of Benjamin Shute by Elizabeth, da. of Rev. Joseph Caryll. educ. Utrecht c.1694-8; I. Temple 1695. m. 23 June 1713, Anne, da. and coh. of Sir William Daines, 5s. 3da. suc. to Beckett and Shrivenham, Berks., bequeathed to him by John Wildman 1710; to Tofts, Essex, settled on him by Francis Barrington, taking name of Barrington 1711 and arms by Act of Parliament 1716, cr. Visct. Barrington [I] 1 July 1720.

Offices Held Commr. of customs 1708-11.

Biography In 1704-5 John Shute, a young Presbyterian, attracted the attention of the Whig ministers by a work entitled The Rights of Protestant Dissenters, on the strength of which they sent him to Scotland to win Presbyterian support for the Union. Rewarded for his services with a commissionership of customs, which he lost after the Tories came to power in 1710, he inherited property in Berkshire from an admirer, John Wildman, and in Essex from a distant connexion by marriage, Francis Barrington, whose name he assumed. Returned for Berwick on the local nonconformist interest in 1715, he was commissioned by James Stanhope to draw up a statement of the case for repealing the Occasional Conformity Act.1 On 12 Apr. 1717, replying in the House of Commons to opposition Whig criticism of the Sunderland-Stanhope Government for failing to pass an Act of Indemnity in respect of the late rebellion, while planning to repeal the Occasional Conformity Act, he expressed surprise that a Whig should count it ‘a mistake on the one hand not to give an indemnity to H.M.’s declared enemies; and a mistake on the other hand to make H.M.’s undoubted friends easy’. In 1718 he sent Sunderland a memorandum for the perusal of the King on the best way of relieving the Dissenters without offending the Church of England.2 He spoke in favour of the bill for repealing the Occasional Conformity and Schism Acts, 9 Jan. 1719; was created an Irish peer in 1720; spoke for the Government on a subsidy to Sweden, 17 June 1721; and was re-elected for Berwick in 1722.

Meanwhile Barrington had become sub-governor of the Harburg Company, founded to carry on trade between Great Britain and Hanover, with the King’s grandson, Prince Frederick, as its titular governor. Under a charter granted in 1720 by George I as Elector the Company were granted a number of commercial privileges in Hanover, including the right to hold a lottery at Harburg, where they undertook to develop the port. The lottery aimed at raising £1,500,000 by the sale of 500,000 £3 tickets, one third of which would carry prizes totalling £1,000,000, leaving a profit of £500,000, less charges for managing the lottery, to constitute the capital of the Company, of which the holders of the non-prize-winning tickets would be the shareholders. The catch lay in the provision for managing the lottery, under which Barrington and his co-directors, three of whom were subsequently the ringleaders of the Charitable Corporation frauds, were to pocket no less than £210,000 of the £500,000 profit.

Barrington’s role in this swindle was to use his influence with ministers to obtain a British charter authorizing the lottery to be held in London, without which there was no hope of raising the money. But when in Aug. 1720 he approached the chief ministers, Walpole, Townshend, and Carteret, he was told that a British charter could not be granted, as such a lottery would be neither legal nor prudent. Nevertheless, on 4 Dec. 1722 the Company issued a press notice giving the addresses where tickets were being sold for the lottery in London, on terms already advertised; denying reports that it was being abandoned; and stigmatizing their opponents as the enemies of the King, under whose auspices they were acting. A week later the House of Commons appointed a committee to inquire into this and any other foreign lottery carrying on in the city of London.

On 1 Feb. 1723 the committee presented a report, setting out the above facts.3 Without a division the House of Commons passed resolutions declaring the lottery to be fraudulent and illegal; condemning the unauthorized use of the King’s name; and ordering a bill to be introduced to oblige the managers of the lottery to refund the money they had received to the contributors.4 Consideration of Barrington’s case was deferred till 14 Feb. to give him time to prepare his defence.5

On 14 Feb. the House spent the whole day till 7 at night re-examining the witnesses who had given evidence to the committee. Next day Barrington was heard in his place.

As he was making his defence and going to shew the hopes he had of the British charter, Mr. Walpole stood up and gave him a piece of advice, as he called it, not to go on in that way, for he could assure the House that he as a minister had refused it in every shape and he never heard any of the English ministers but were of the same mind and so his Lordship altered his note.6 Again without a dissentient the Commons resolved that Barrington had been guilty of promoting, abetting, and carrying on a fraudulent undertaking, and that he should be expelled the House.

After standing unsuccessfully for Berwick in 1727, Barrington in 1732 set himself at the head of an agitation among the Dissenters for an application to be made to Parliament for the repeal of the Test and Corporation Acts. The 1st Lord Egmont heard that

Lord Barrington, who has been the active man in the affair, had told the Ministry that if they would make him an English peer the Dissenters should drop their application, which the ministry, who despise him, have told to everybody ... and it has greatly lessened that gentleman’s esteem among his friends.7 In 1733 Barrington announced his intention of standing again for Berwick, where he still had a strong interest, especially among the corporation, with whom he was ‘a great favourite’.8 George Liddell, one of the sitting Members for the borough, reported to Walpole that Barrington was giving out

that when he waited on the Queen she wished him success at Berwick, and that he was on good terms with you: neither of which I believe. Barrington was also telling his friends that

he has writ to several great men, and doubts not but he shall have the Government’s interest, and does not think that they will judge so ill, as to oppose him at this time who is no enemy to you. That he can be chose for a trifle elsewhere but cares not for being obliged that way. That he had rather spend £1,000 for Berwick, than a hogshead of ale elsewhere. ’Tis, I believe, genuinely related and is like the man.9 Walpole assured Liddell that Barrington should in no circumstances have the government interest: that he would have no transaction with him on any account. That if no other person could be brought in, he must come in, but not by his means.10

In the event he was defeated by 4 votes. He died 14 Dec. 1734.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754 Author: Romney R. Sedgwick Notes 1.Sir Dudley Ryder's Diary, 154. 2. Barrington to Sunderland, 27 May 1718, Sunderland (Blenheim) mss. 3.CJ, xx. 115-25. 4. Ibid. A bill for this purpose was introduced and amalgamated with a coinage bill, which got no further than the committee stage. 5.HMC Egmont Diary, i. 266. 6.Knatchbull Diary, 15 Feb. 1722. 7.HMC Egmont Diary, i. 304. 8. Geo. Liddell to Walpole, 24 Nov. 1732, Cholmondeley (Houghton) mss. 9. Same to same, 10 July 1733, loc. cit. 10. E. Hughes, N. Country Life in 18th Cent. 274 n.2.,_1st_Viscount_Barrington


John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass was born in 1678 at Theobalds, Hertfordshire, England.1 He was the son of Benjamin Shute and Elizabeth Caryl.1 He married Anne Daines, daughter of Sir William Daines, on 23 June 1713 at St. Benet's, Paul's Wharf, London, England.1 He died on 14 December 1734 at Becket, Berkshire, England.1 He was buried on 27 December 1734 at Shrivenham, Berkshire, England.1 His will (dated 2 March 1726) was probated on 13 June 1738.1


John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass was baptised with the name of John Shute.1 He was educated at Utrecht, The Netherlands.1 He was admitted to Inner Temple entitled to practice as a Barrister-at-Law.1 He held the office of Commissioner of Customs between 1708 and 1711.1 In 1710 he also inherited the estate of Tofts in Little Baddow, Essex, from Francis Barrington, married to his cousin.1 In 1710 he inherited the estate of Becket, and considerable property in Berkshire, from a John Wildman (no relation whatsoever).1 He held the office of Member of Parliament (M.P.) (Whig) for Berwick-upon-Tweed between 1715 and 1723.1 On 1716 his name was legally changed to John Barrington by Act of Parliament.1 He held the office of Master of the Rolls [Ireland] between 5 July 1717 and 10 December 1731.1 He was created 1st Baron Barrington of Newcastle, co. Limerick [Ireland] on 1 July 1720.1 He was created 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass, co. Down [Ireland] on 1 July 1720.1 On 15 February 1722/23 he was expelled from Parliament for promotiing "an infamous fraudulent project," the lottery of Harbourg.1 He lived at Becket, Berkshire, England.1 He has an extensive biographical entry in the Dictionary of National Biography.2


Swift describes him as "the shrewdest head in England." However, Horace Walpole writes "I believe [he] was a very dirty fellow, for besides being expelled from the H. of C. on the affair of the lottery, he was reckoned to have twice sold the dissenters to the Court."1

Children of John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass and * Anne Daines

  • Hon. Anne Barrington+3
  • William Wildman Barrington-Shute, 2nd Viscount Barrington of Ardglass4 b. 15 Jan 1717, d. 1 Feb 1793
  • Maj.-Gen. Hon. John Barrington+4 b. c 1722, d. 2 Apr 1764
  • Hon. Daines Barrington4 b. 1727, d. 1800
  • Admiral Hon. Samuel Barrington4 b. 1729, d. 1800
  • Rt. Rev. Hon. Shute Barrington4 b. 26 May 1734, d. 25 Mar 1826


  • [S6] G.E. Cokayne; with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom, Extant, Extinct or Dormant, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume I, page 432. Hereinafter cited as The Complete Peerage.
  • [S18] Matthew H.C.G., editor, Dictionary of National Biography on CD-ROM (Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press, 1995), reference: "Barrington, John Shute". Hereinafter cited as Dictionary of National Biography.
  • [S15] George Edward Cokayne, editor, The Complete Baronetage, 5 volumes (no date (c. 1900); reprint, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 1983), volume IV, page 65. Hereinafter cited as The Complete Baronetage.
  • [S6] Cokayne, and others, The Complete Peerage, volume I, page 433. His will can be found here, and is attached in two parts as a source document. This site also lists five children not included in the peerage citation above.

John Shute Barrington

Born 1678 in Hertfordshire, Englandmap

Son of Benjamin Shute and Elizabeth (Caryl) Shute

[sibling(s) unknown]

Husband of Anne (Daines) Barrington — married [date unknown] [location unknown]

Father of William Wildman Shute Barrington

Died December 14, 1734 in Becket, Berkshire, Massachusetts, USAmap


John was born in 1678. John Barrington ... He passed away in 1734. [1]

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Sir John Barrington, 1st Viscount Barrington of Ardglass's Timeline

Theobalds, Hertfordshire, England
October 4, 1714
Age 36
January 15, 1717
Age 39