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Devon County

Devonshire Rgt.

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Parish Records




War Memorials



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.

which are grouped in Hundreds*

Bow (or Nymet Tracy as then known) belonged to the Hundred of North Tawton

Richard Bacher John Labbet Hugh Rowe
Humphrey Bemen Alexander Lake John Rowedon
Giles Bethem Mark Lethebridge Thomas Seaward
Roger Bethem sen. Richard Mander Thomas Seldon
Roger Betham jun. Bartholomew Martyn Thomas Shut
Henry Bird John Merdon Thomas Shut
John Bird Walter Merrifield Gregory Smale
Edward Bond John Moore Robert Smayth
John Bond sen. John Moore William Smerdon
John Bond jun. Richard Moore Richard Steer
Mark Bond Edmund Morishe Thomas Steer
Peter Bond John Mortemer Thomas Steere
Richard Bone John Mortemer William Stere
Nicholas Bremridge William Mortemer James Temlet
John Brend Henry Mudge Richard Temlet
John Brock William Muninge Robert Temlet
John Browne John Necotten William Tingcombe
John Callard Anthony Northcot James Tozer
George Cann John Northcott John Tozer
John Cann William Nosworthie Mark Tozer
John Cann William Nucomb Richard Tozer
John Carrat Richard Pethbridge Samuel Tozer
James Comines Richard Phillips Allnot Tracye
Edmund Demond Peter Plemsall Mark Tracye
Richard Eastabrooke Allnot Pope William Tracye
Edward Furse Richard Preston Richard Trueman
Nicholas Garratt Alexander Pufford Robert Tucker
Thomas Greene John Pym Edward Tuckfield
Thomas Griffye John Rattenberrye William Warren
Mark Growe Robert Rattenberye Roger Wayford
John Gullacke Thomas Rattenberye John Weeks
John Heard Augustine Rattenbury George Whitt
William Heard George Rattenbury Robert Whitt
Arthur Hillsom Leonard Reeve Robert Whitt
William Hillsom Leonard Reeve James Willsen
John Hole William Reeve Richard Willsen
John Hole Thomas Remond Robert Willson
Mark Hole John Robines John Wrayford
Peter Hole Christopher Rochford Matthew Wrayford
Richard Hole Mark Rowden Samuel Wrayford
John Knight Henry Rowe Thomas Wrayford

"John Wethebroke and Richard Tracy are two sick men who are 

not able to give answers to what is demanded of them

William Bremridge is ill absent"

Signed by 

John Mathewe - Clerk

Richard Phillips - Constable

William Nosworthy - Churchwarden


* 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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