Spencer Compton, 2nd Earl of
Northampton (May, 1601–March 19,
1643), styled Lord Compton
from 1618 to 1630, was an English peer, soldier and politician.
The 2nd Earl of Northampton.
Northampton was the son of William Compton, 1st
Earl of Northampton
, and his wife Elizabeth, daughter and heir
of Sir John Spencer, Lord Mayor of
. On November 3,
1616 he was created a Knight of the Bath, and was elected for
Ludlow in the parliament of 1621, the same year being
appointed Master of the Robes to
the Prince of Wales and attending
the latter in the adventure to Spain in 1623.
supported the king in the Scottish expeditions, at the same time
giving his advice for the summoning of the parliament, which word
of four syllables he declared was like the dew of heaven.
outbreak of the Civil War he was
entrusted with the execution of the commission of array in Warwickshire. After varying success and failure in the
Midlands he fought at
Edgehill, and after the king's return to Oxford was given, in
November 1642, the military supervision of Banbury and the
He was attacked in Banbury by the
parliamentary forces on December 22
relieved by Prince Rupert of
the next day.
1643 he marched from Banbury to relieve Lichfield, and having failed there proceeded to Stafford, which he
occupied. Thence on March 19,
accompanied by three of his sons, he marched out with his troops
and engaged Sir John Gell,
1st Baronet and Sir William
Brereton at Hopton Heath.
He put to flight the enemy's cavalry and took eight guns, but in
the moment of victory, while charging too far in advance, he was
surrounded by the parliament soldiers. To these who offered him
quarter he answered that he scorned to take quarter from such base
rogues and rebels as they were, whereupon he was despatched by a
blow on the head. Clarendon
loss as a great one to the cause.
Northampton married Mary, daughter of Sir Francis Beaumont (not the
playwright), by whom besides two daughters he had six sons. The
, succeeded him
as 3rd Earl of Northampton. Henry
became bishop of London
all distinguished themselves in the king's cause — William was one
of the original members of the Royalist organisation, The Sealed Knot