Godolphin–Marlborough ministry

This is a list of the principal Ministers of the Crown of the Kingdom of England, and then of the Kingdom of Great Britain, from May 1702, at the beginning of the reign of Queen Anne. During this period, the leaders of the ministry were Lord Godolphin and the Duke of Marlborough.

Godolphin–Marlborough ministry
Engravings of Lord Godolphin (left) and the Duke of Marlborough (right)
Date formedMay 1702
Date dissolved8 August 1710
People and organisations
Lord High TreasurerLord Godolphin
Master-General of the OrdnanceThe Duke of Marlborough
Member partyTory
Status in legislatureMajority coalition (England, and GB after 1707)
Outside of Parliament (Scotland)

482 / 513

493 / 513

513 / 558
Opposition cabinetNone
ElectionsEngland: Scotland:
Great Britain:
Legislature terms1st Parliament of Queen Anne (England)
1702-1707 Scottish Parliament (Scotland)
1st British Parliament (after 1707)
SuccessorHarley ministry

On 8 August 1710 Godolphin was dismissed and the Harley ministry took power.



Upon Queen Anne's accession to the English throne in 1702, she appointed Lord Godolphin as Lord High Treasurer and the Duke of Marlborough as Master-General of the Ordnance (among other numerous appointments). They would lead this coalition of Tories and Whigs until 1708, one year after the Act of Union formed the Kingdom of Great Britain. There were three phases to the ministry. From 1702 to 1704 the ministry was largely Tory – Godolphin and Marlborough themselves were Tories, as were the Earl of Nottingham and Sir Charles Hedges, the Secretaries of State. After Nottingham's resignation in 1704, Godolphin and Marlborough turned for support to the "Country" Whigs, led by Speaker Robert Harley. Not long after, the Whig complexion of the ministry grew, as Godolphin sought the support of Harley's opponents, the second Whig Junto, bringing the Earl of Sunderland in to replace Hedges as Secretary of State in 1706, and other Junto allies like Sir William Cowper began to be appointed to positions of power. The leading ministers looked favourably on the Junto's strong support for the War of the Spanish Succession. Harley at this point began to turn against the ministry and towards the opposition Tories, and his resignation in 1708 left the government largely in the hands of the Junto for its last two years, with Sunderland as Secretary of State, Lord Somers as Lord President of the Council, the Earl of Orford as First Lord of the Admiralty, and the Earl of Wharton as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. The ministry finally collapsed in 1710 when Queen Anne turned to Harley and the Tories, dismissing Godolphin and the Junto Whigs, and, soon after, Marlborough himself.

List of ministers

Office Name Appointed
First Lord of the Treasury Earl of Godolphin 8 May 1702
Chancellor of the Exchequer Henry Boyle 29 March 1701
John Smith 11 February 1708
Lord President of the Council The Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery 9 July 1702
The Lord Somers 25 November 1708
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Sir John Leveson-Gower 12 May 1702
The Earl of Derby 1 June 1706
Master-General of the Ordnance The Duke of Marlborough 1 July 1702
Secretary of State for the Southern Department The Earl of Nottingham 2 May 1702
Sir Charles Hedges 18 May 1704
The Earl of Sunderland 3 December 1706
The Lord Dartmouth 15 June 1710
Secretary of State for the Northern Department Sir Charles Hedges 2 May 1702
Robert Harley 18 May 1704
Henry Boyle 13 February 1708
Lord Privy Seal The Marquess of Normanby 27 April 1702
The Duke of Newcastle-upon-Tyne 21 March 1705
President of the Board of Trade The Viscount Weymouth 12 June 1702
The Earl of Stamford 25 April 1707
Lord High Admiral /
First Lord of the Admiralty
Prince George of Denmark 20 May 1702
Queen Anne 28 October 1708
The Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery 29 November 1708
The Earl of Orford 8 November 1709
Secretary at War George Clarke 3 March 1692
Henry St John 20 April 1704
Robert Walpole 25 February 1708
Treasurer of the Navy Sir Thomas Littleton 29 May 1699
Robert Walpole 21 January 1710
Paymaster of the Forces at Home John Howe 4 January 1703
Abroad Charles Fox 4 January 1703
James Brydges April 1705
Secretary of State for Scotland The Earl of Mar 1 May 1707
The Duke of Queensberry 3 February 1709

See also



  • Chris Cook and John Stevenson, British Historical Facts 1688–1760, Macmillan 1988, p. 33–35
  • World Statesmen
Preceded by Government of England
Acts of Union
Government of Great Britain
Succeeded by