Sir Gregory Norton, 1603-52

Sussex MP and regicide, he was a signatory of the King's death warrant.

The eldest surviving son of Henry Norton of Wantage in Berkshire, Gregory Norton probably grew up in Ireland where his father held an administrative post. He acquired an estate in Sussex upon his marriage to Martha Gunter around 1621, and was made a baronet in 1624. During the 1630s, Norton held a position as a minor official at the court of King Charles I. Like his friend and fellow courtier Humphrey Edwards, however, he supported Parliament on the outbreak of the English Civil War. He became active in local administration in Sussex and the Isle of Wight, and was elected as recruiter MP for Midhurst in Sussex in October 1645.

Norton emerged as a radical Independent, with a particular interest in Irish affairs. He was active in the proceedings against King Charles in 1649, sitting as a member of the High Court of Justice and signing the King's death warrant.

During the Commonwealth, Norton was associated with the republican Henry Marten, but he also came under suspicion of profiteering from the sale of confiscated Royalist estates and properties. He died in 1652.


J. T. Peacey, Sir Gregory Norton, Oxford DNB, 2004