John Asgill

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John Asgill
Born 25 March 1659
Died 10 November 1738 (aged 79)
Occupation lawyer, politician, pamphleteer
Notable work An Argument Proving, that … Man may be Translated

John Asgill (25 March 1659 – 10 November 1738) was an eccentric English writer and politician.


He studied law at the Middle Temple, 1686, and was called to the bar in 1692. He founded the first land bank in 1695 with Nicholas Barbon, which, after proving to be a profitable venture, merged with the land bank of John Briscoe in 1696. However, after profits dropped, the bank closed in 1699. He was then elected that year as Member of Parliament for Bramber.[1]

In 1700 Asgill had published An Argument Proving, that … Man may be Translated, a pamphlet aiming to prove that death was not obligatory upon Christians, which, much to his surprise, caused a public outcry and led to his expulsion from the Irish House of Commons in 1703, only a short time after he had stood successfully for Enniscorthy. He fell on hard times, and passed the rest of his life between the Fleet prison and the King's Bench, but his zeal as a pamphleteer continued unabated.


Cousin, John William (1910). "Wikisource link to Asgill, John". A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature. London: J. M. Dent & Sons. Wikisource 


  1. Greaves, Richard L. "Asgill, John". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/734.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles> (Subscription or UK public library membership required.). The first edition of this text is available as an article on Wikisource:  [ "Asgill, John" ] Check |ws link in chapter= value (help). Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainCousin, John William (1910). A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature. London: J. M. Dent & Sons. Wikisource 

Parliament of Ireland
Preceded by
Richard Barry
John Seymour
Member of Parliament for Enniscorthy
Served alongside: Morley Saunders
Succeeded by
Morley Saunders
William Berry