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MANATON - 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.

Manaton belonged to the Hundred of  Teignbridge

The original spelling has been preserved

William Banocke Peter Hayward Thomas Merdon
George Booden Richard Hayward Zachary Milward
George Booden John Hext Nicholas Milwarde
John Booden Gilbert Hill John Nosworthie
George Boonde Jacob Hill Alexander Nosworthy
Robert Boonde John Hill Edward Nosworthy
William Boonde William Hill James Nosworthy
James Brockedon Pancras Hodge John Nosworthy
John Burnel Edmund Hole Oliver Nosworthy
Stephen Caseleigh Thomas Holmes Thomas Nosworthy
John Comin John Kingwell Thomas Nosworthy
Peter Comin Stephen Kingwel Thomas Palke
Thomas Cooke Edward Leaman Cornelius Puddecombe
John Eeles Nicholas Leaman Roger Rabin
Nicholas Eeles Richard l;eaman Simon Redie
John Foxforde Robert Leaman William Roper
Thomas French Ambros Leere John Rysen
Thomas German Robert Leere William Soper
Henry Greepe Richard Longworthy John Tamlin
Thomas Greepe Thomas Longworthy George Taverner
William Greepe Pancras Lynes James trebie
George Greie Manuel Maie John Whiddon
Robert Greie Richard Man John Whiddon
Thomas Groote Edwrad Merdon William Yeoland
George Harte George Merdon -
Andrew Hayward Nicholas Merdon -

 

* 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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