March 1679 English general election

The March 1679 English general election resulted in the Habeas Corpus Parliament, named after the Habeas Corpus Act, which it enacted in May, 1679 to define and strengthen the ancient prerogative writ benefitting all subjects. It was dissolved while in recess on 12 July 1679.

March 1679 English general election

← 1661 March 1679 Oct 1679 →
  First party Second party Third party
Leader Anthony Ashley Cooper John Ernle
Party Exclusionist Anti-Exclusionist Unknown
Seats won 218 137 167
Seat change Increase 79 Decrease 242
The English Parliament after the March 1679 General Election

On the current issue of excluding the King's younger brother from the succession to the throne, 218 members were in favour of the Exclusion Bill, while 137 were opposed. However, 167 members did not attend the parliament at all, so their view about Exclusion is unknown.


  • Henning, Basil, ed. (1983), The House of Commons, 1660–1690, The History of Parliament, Secker & Warburg