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CHAGFORD - THE PROTESTATION RETURN OF 1641/2

 

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.

Chagford belonged to the Hundred of Wonford

The original spelling has been preserved

Edward Adams Robert Endicott Nicholas Prach, gent
Edward Aggett John Fowell John Puddicombe
John Aggett William Germyn Nicholas Puddicombe
Richard Aggett William Gervis William Renolls
Thomas Aggett John Grosse Richard Ribley
William Aggett Nicholas Grosse Richard Ripley
William Aish Oliver Grosse Philip Roole
John Allen William Grosse John Rowe
William Aller John Hanson Arthur Rugge
Richard Anthony John Hant Nicholas Salter
John Arscott Thomas Hant John Sarell
Robert Arscott Henry Hanworthy William Sarell
james Aynell Richard Hanworthy Alexander Saunders
Edward Baron George Harris Gregory Scatte
George Baron John Harris Gilbert Scatte
George Baron John Harris William Scatte
John Baron Walter Harris Gilbert Scutte
Edward Bennett Robert Harston John Searle
James Bennett John Hartt John Seyward
Richard Bermett David Hill Roger Seyward
Henry Berry Nicholas Hill Henry Shapter
John Binny  William Hodge John Simons
Edward Bishop Francis Hole John Sleepe
Thomas Bishopp John Hole John Smith
William Bishopp William Hole William Smith
George Blackaller Henry Hooper Gregory Soper
John Blight Richard Hooper Gregory Soper
Evans Body Thomas Hooper John Soper
John Body William Hooper William Soper
John Body Nicholas Horsman John Spears
Walter Body Hannibal Horwill John Splatt
William Body Edwrad Hunt Bennett Splatte
William Body Richard Hunt John Stotte
Edward Bonamy Olivewr James William Stronge
John Bonamy Richard Joslyn William Stronge
Nicholas Bowden Bennett Kenser John Syres
Richard Box William Kinge John Tancombe
John Bremelcombe Richard Knapman Thomas Tapper
William Bremelcombe Richard Knowle Peter Taverner
George Brocke Thomas Knowle William Taverner
John Brocke Alexander Lake John Taylor
Oliver Brocke William Lake John Toser
Thomas Brocke William Langford, Gent John Toser
Roger Burridge Henry Langworthy Giggory Trend
Alexander Butcher John Langworthy Gregory Trend
Richard Butcher William Langworthy John Trend
Oliver Can Edwrad Lashbrooke Richard trend
William Can John Leeve William Trend
Thomas Canne William Leman William Trend
James Carry John Lighfoote Christopher Tuckett
Branard Caseley Gilbert Lopas Roger Turner
John Caseley Robert Lopas Robert Uppacott
Barnabas Casely  William Lopas Peter Vallance
John Casely Laurence Loaber William Vallance
Peter Casely Alexander Loskey John Varder
William Casely Peter Loskey Laurence Varder
William Casely William Loskey Oliver Varder
George cater Henry Luce Richard Varder
George Cater John Lyne Thomas Varder
Gregory Cater Baldwin Paine Glyn Venicomb
Roger Chinge Thomas March John Vongewill
Hugh Clampitt George Marck Henry Vongewill
John Clement Robert Martyn John Vongewill
John Cliffe Robert Martyn John Vongewill
William Cliffe John Masy John Vongewill
George Collihole Richard Maunder Thomas Vogeweill
Walter Cooper Gregory May William Vongewill
John Copplestone Gent Roger May Anthony Wannell
John Corne William May Oliver Wannell
John Crdeiford Laurence More Richard Wannell
Thomas Croote John Mylles Richard Wannell
Oliver Cullicott Thomas Necke Barnabas Weekes
Thomas Cullicott Robert Northcote James Weekes
William Curry John Northcott John Whiddon, gent
John Dart John Nosewworthy John Whiddon, Gent
Richard Demon Richard Noseworthy Rowland Whiddon Esq.
Richard Denceham William Noseworthy William Whiddon
John Denham Gent John Nosworthy John Whiteway
Edward Dicker Thomas Nosworthy Henry Willes
John Dininge John Orchard Henry Willes
Anthony Dodd Stephen Puddicombe Thomas Wiles
Richard Dodd William Paule Thomas Willes
Gregory Dodde William Paule Valentine Williams
John Dodde Mathias Perryman William Wolcott
Richard Duninge Thomas Perryman John Woodleigh
James Ellis William Peryman Edwrad Woodley
Robert Elles William Peryman Oliver Woodley
John Ellis Hugh Pethebridge William Woodly
Nicholas Ellis William Pethebridge Stephen Yolden
William Ellis John Petter Thomas Yolden
Henry Endicott Gilbert Pole John Youldon
Henry Endicott James Potter -
Richard Endicott John Prach, Gent -
(The above names in the same hand. The following seven are signatures)

John Denham - Clerk

Gilbert Northcott - Churchwarden

Thomas Dodd - Charchwarden

Alexander Trend - Constable

John Walter - Constable

John Dodd - Overseer

John trend - Overseer

 

* For many centuries, Devon was divided into 32 administrative districts or Hundreds for land tax purpose.

Taken from the transcription by A. J. Howard published in 1973 which is available in the West Country Studies Library, Exeter.                                                                                                              Courtesy: Devon County Council

 

 
 
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