|8th Colonial Governor of Albemarle Sound (North Carolina)|
|Preceded by||Thomas Miller|
|Succeeded by||John Harvey|
|12th Colonial Governor of Albemarle Sound (North Carolina)|
|Preceded by||John Jenkins|
|Succeeded by||John Gibbs|
|9th Colonial Governor of South Carolina|
|Preceded by||James Colleton|
|Succeeded by||Philip Ludwell|
Seth Sothel (also spelled Sothell and Southwell, d. c. 1694) was a colonial American proprietor and governor of the Province of Carolina. He ruled the northern portion, Albemarle Sound (future North Carolina), in 1678 and the southern portion (future South Carolina) from 1690 to 1692. He died in North Carolina in about 1694.
Sothel purchased a propriety from Edward Hyde, which made him become a Lord Proprietor. The Lord Proprietors decided to send Sothel to Albemarle with the order to become governor of the colony. This was based on the fact that Sothel was not a partisan of any faction of the Culpeper's Rebellion, which was still in development.
After leaving England, he was captured by Algerian pirates. During the time he waited to be released, Albemarle was governed by John Harvey and, upon Harvey's death, by John Jenkins. After Sotel was released, he took the role.
During his administration, he caused many crimes. Sothel prohibited trade between the settlers and the Amerindians, but he kept the benefits. He imprisoned people who opposed him (including Thomas Pollock and George Durant) and kept his lands. He confiscated "merchant ships and their cargoes", stole slaves cattle and farmlands and accepted bribes from criminals in exchange for releasing them without prosecution.
However, in 1689, after he established in the Salmon Creek plantation, the residents of the colony revolted against him and captured him. They sent Sothel back to England for trial where he was punished by forbidding him from another office in North Carolina. He was expelled from the government of the colony on December 2, 1689, and exiled for a year.
Sothel fled to South Carolina, becoming governor in 1690, from which he was suspended on November 8, 1691. After this, he returned to Albemarle, to Salmon Creek, where he died a year later, in about 1694.
Sothel was a landowner and he married Anna Willix. They had no children.
-  "Seth Sothel" Preservation Society Halsey Map
- Dennis F. Daniels, "Seth Sothel", NCpedia
- Governor of "Ye Lands South and West of Cape Feare" 1690 to 1692
- McCrady, Edward. The History of South Carolina during the Proprietary Period (covers Sothel's governance of South Carolina)
- Powell, William. Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, Volume 5 (contains a biographical sketch)