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ABBOTSKERSWELL PROTESTATION RETURN 1641/42

 

By the end of 1640, King Charles I had become very unpopular.  Parliament forced him to make changes in the Constitution which gave them a bigger say in how the country was governed. From then on, Parliament was split into two factions - Royalists (Cavaliers) who supported the King and Parliamentarians (Roundheads) who wanted political and religious reform.

 

On 3 May 1641, every Member of the House of Commons was ordered to make a declaration of loyalty to the crown. This was ratified next day by the House of Lords. They called it their Protestation against " an arbitrarie and tyrannical government" and another order was made that every Rector, Churchwarden and Overseer of the Poor had to appear in person before the JPs in their Hundred to make this Protestation Oath in person. It was to  be a declaration of their belief in the" Protestant religion, allegiance to the King and support for the rights and privileges of Parliament".

 

They then had to go back home to their own parish where any two of them were to require the same oath of allegiance from all males over the age of 18. The names of all who refused to make the oath were to be noted and assumed to be Catholics.

 

We have, in the Devon Protestation Returns, a set of amazing documents - something akin to a census even though no women or children are named.  A transcription is available in the West Country Studies Library in Exeter.

 

The Protestation Returns are arranged by parish.and grouped in Hundreds*

The parish of Abbotskerswell belonged to the Hundred of Haytor

The original spelling has been preserved

Elliott Abraham Isaac Eadmer John Pope
John Abraham James Earne Richard Prescot
Thomas Babish John Eastley Francis Raddon
Theophilus Balch Josias Ford John Randell
Andrew Ball John Glowen Richard Samson
John Ball Humphrey Gotham Timothy Scaden
Richard Ball William Gotham John Sheere
Walter Barter Francis Haycraft Richard Sheere
Nicholas Beard John Heareman Philip Shere
John Beckford John Heathman John Stonman
William Bennett Luke Henley Robert Taytor
Benjamin Bickford Wiolliam Henley John Tread
Edward Bickford John Hodge John Tucke
John Blackstone Pearse Hoyten Aquila Vening
Edmund Bower Nathaniel Hutchings John Vening
John Braund Laurence Hutchins Richard Vening
Simon Bright William Jarvis Robert Vening
Robert Brooke William Jeaves William Vening
Henry Buckley Henry King John Voysey sen.
Thomas Bulley Batholomew Martyn John Voysey
Mark Causey Edward Martyn George Wallis
Richard Cole Thomas Mortyn William Wyght

John Barnes - Minister

Peter Stommay - Constable

John Pope - Constable

Jeremy Buller - Constable

Richard Rod - Churchwarden

Thomas Veninge - Churchwarden

Andrew Even - Overseer

Nathaniel Gillard - Overseer

 

 

 
 
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