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ERMINGTON  - 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.

Ermington belonged to the Hundred of Ermington

The original spelling has been preserved

Amos Abbot Ruchard Frood Christopher Pearse
Philip Abbot Thomas Frood Francis Pearse
John Andrew sen. Simon Futterell Guesimios Pearse
John Andrew, jun. Thomas Gibbe Hierome Pearse
Philip Andrew Robert Gill Hugh Pearse
Hugh Baddiford Anthony Gold John Pearse
Arthur Baker Thomas Gold, jun Jonathan Pearse
George Baker Thomas Golde sen. Richard Pearse
John Baker Thomas Hamline Roger Pearse
Thomas Baker Arthur Hammocke Thomas Pearse sen
 William Baker Henry Hammocke Thomas Pearse jun.
Anthony Beere John Hammocke sen Timothy Pearse
Thomas Beere John Hammocke jun. Thomas Prideaux jun.
William Bennet John Hammocke John Quicke
Adam Berie Leonard Hammocke Joseph Quicke
Robert Berie Richard Hammocke William Quicke
John Bery Arthur Hart John Revell
Thomas Bery John Hart William Revell sen.
Francis Blackaller William Hart William Revell jun.
Robert Blake Bartholomew Hatch Francis Rich
William Blythe, Gent Roger Hatch John Rich sen.
John Bound Gabriel Hawkins John Rich jun.
Thomas Brend Arthur Hill Richard Rich
Christopher Bromelcombe Edward Hill Thomas Rich jun.
John Brooking Henry Hill Henry Rider
Thomas Brooking Francis Hingston John Ripleigh
William Brooking sen. William Hingston Henry Roch
William Brooking jun. Josias Hone William Rogers
Ellis Browne George Hooper Simon Row
Thomas Came, Gent. Michael Hooper Ambrose Rowe, Clerk
Richard Canamoore Robert Horne William Rowe
Bernard Chamberne William Horne Oliver Rows
Francis Chapple John Hunwell William Shale
Henry Chapple Robert Hunwell Thomas Sherman
Robert Chappple Henry Hurst Adam Sherwell
William Chubbe sen. William Jane Richard Sherwell
William Chubbe jun. John Joseph Arthur Simons
Thomas Clement Thomas Langdon Richard Simons
John Cleve Peter Lange Matthew Soper
Richard Cleve William Lange Richard Soper
Thomas Cleve Richard Lapthorne John Sowton sen.
William Cleve Thomas Lapthorne John Sowton jun
Thomas Cole Thomas Lapthorne Thomas Spurwell
Thomas Collings Christopher Legazike Robert Steere
Hugh Cranaford George Legazike George Steevens
Nicholas Creese John Legazicke Walter Steevens
Thomas Creese Michael Legazike William Stidston
John Crokker Richard Legazike Nicholas Strachleigh
Samuel Currington Henry Light Thomas Symons
William Deaman John Light Henry Tanner
Richard Dorie John Light Henry Tapley
Martin Dunne Richard Light Thomas Trebie
Chritopher Distine John Lovelie James Treincke
William Dyer Robert Luscombe William Treincke
Walter Ecfortd Walter Maddicke Hugh Tucket
William Ecford Shadrach Maine James Tucket
Henry Edgecombe Thomas Marwood Nicholas Tucket
John Edgecombe Andrew Michell Thomas Venning
Nicholas Edgecombe Geoffrey Michell John Warringe
Oliver Edgecombe John Michell Robert Willie
Robert Edgecombe Richard Michell John Williang
Lionel Eleot Thomas Michell Richard Willing
William Eleot William Michell Thomas Willian sen.
Thomas Ellis John Miller Thomas Willing jun
Ambrose Facie Nicholas Miller sen. Thomas Willing
Simon Facie Nicholas Miller jun. Thomas Willy
Hugh Facy Richard Miller John Windyeat
Andrew Ferris William Milles George Winston
Thomas Fesant sen. Misaar Morris Lionel Witheridge
Thomas Fesant jun. Raymond Morrish Robert Witheridge
Thomas Finch John Mortimer James Worth
John Ford James Mudde Andrew Wreath
Lancelot Ford John Oldreife John Wreath
Henry Foxe Andrew Pearse sen. Robert Wreath
John Frood Andrew Pearse jun. Ephraim Yelling

(The above names are written in the same  hand; the following seven are signatures)

Henry Smith - Vicar

William Pearse - Hundred Constable

John Lavers - Constable

Thomas Browne - Constable

Richard Turrin - Churchwarden

Richard Abbut - Overseer

John Browne - 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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