James Harington was the eldest son of Edward Harington of Ridlington and Margaret Doyley. He married Katherine Wright (1617-1675), a daughter of Sir Edmund Wright, Lord Mayor of London, and inherited Swakeleys House from Wright.
Although he did not sign the death warrant, Harrington was one of the Commissioners (Judges) at the trial of Charles I. During the Interregnum, he continued to serve the Parliamentary cause, he served on the first Council of State and later was for a time President of the Council. After the Restoration he was exempted from the Indemnity and Oblivion Act which pardoned most for taking up arms against the King in the Civil War, and died in exile on the European mainland. His baronetcy, which he had inherited on his father's death in 1653, was declared forfeited for life in 1661.
- Portrait of Katherine Wright, Lady Harington, engraved by William Faithorne, Fitzwilliam Museum
- Baronet Ridlington
- James Harrington, the author of Oceana, a cousin often confused with this man.
- John Taplin Shakespeare's Granddaughter and the Bagleys of Dudley published by the Black Country Society June 2005 (Originally published in 38/4, 39/1 and 39/2 of The Blackcountryman).
- Ian Grimble's The Harington Family published by Jonathan Cape, London 1957
- Families covered: Harington of Exton, Harington of Ridlington
- John Tapin References writes that in most existing contemporary records the spelling of the name was with a double 'r', and that the single 'r' is used in some instances, and that this is the way the family spells their name today.
- Battle of Cropredy Bridge
- David Hume The history of England From the invasion of Julius Caesar to the revolution in 1688:Volume VI: The Commonwealth (1778): Endnote [a]
- Leigh Rayment's Peerage Page: Baronetage, Harnage to Hermon-Hodge
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