Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Fleming, Daniel

FLEMING, Sir DANIEL (1633–1701), antiquary, eldest son of William Fleming of Coniston, North Lancashire, and Rydal, Westmoreland, by Alice, eldest daughter of Roger Kirkby of Kirkby, Lancashire, was born on 25 July 1633, and educated at Queen's College, Oxford, which he entered in 1650, and Gray's Inn. By the death of his father in 1653 he inherited considerable estates in the neighbourhood of Rydal, for which he paid heavy fines to the parliament. At the Restoration he was appointed sheriff of Cumberland. He was a constant correspondent of Secretary Williamson, and his letters in the Record Office, some of which have been calendared, afford a lively picture of the state of affairs in Cumberland and Westmoreland during the latter half of the seventeenth century, and exhibit him as a staunch supporter of the church of England, and enemy alike of the protestant dissenter and the Roman catholic. He regretted the release of George Fox in 1666 as likely to discourage the justices from acting against the quakers, and credited to the full the reports of their burning ‘steeple houses.’ He was knighted on 15 May 1681 at Windsor, and in the parliament of 1685–1687 sat as member for Cockermouth, in which character he opposed the declaration of indulgence. He occupied his leisure in antiquarian researches, chiefly in connection with his native county, and left some manuscript collections, which have recently been edited for the Cumberland and Westmoreland Antiquarian Society under the title ‘Description of the County of Westmoreland,’ by Sir G. F. Duckett, bart., London, 1882, 8vo. He died in 1701. He is said by Wotton (Baronetage, iv. 120) to have been, ‘not without grateful acknowledgment, a considerable assistant to the learned annotator of Camden's “Britannia.”’ No such acknowledgment, however, is to be found in the preface to Gibson's edition of Camden, which must be the one referred to. It was at Fleming's suggestion that Thomas Brathwaite left his collection of upwards of three hundred coins of the Roman era to the university of Oxford. Fleming married in 1655 Barbara, eldest daughter of Sir Henry Fletcher of Hutton, Cumberland, who was slain at Rowton Heath on the side of the king in 1645. His eldest son, William, created a baronet 4 Oct. 1705, died in 1736, and was succeeded by his brother George, bishop of Carlisle, who is separately noticed.

[Nicolson and Burn's Westmoreland, i. 164–71; Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1660–7; Luttrell's Relation of State Affairs, i. 93; Hist. MSS. Comm. 10th Rep. App. pt. iv.; Lists of Members of Parliament (Official Return of).]

J. M. R.