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With general particulars as to the Landowners, 

Lay and Clerical, from the Conquest to the present time, 

and a special notice of the Hamlyn Family. 


" A Digression *' on the Noble Houses of RedverSy 
and of Courtenayy Earls of Devon. 


(Formerly H.M. S^nd Regt.). 

Sometime Pnn. Assist, to the late Somerset Herald, 

Author of 

" Devonshire Parishes," " Practical Heraldry," &c. 

In one vol ; cloth ; 8vo. Price 8s. 

LONDON: :. ^ - 

HENRY GRAY, 47 Leicester Square, W.C. 

Exeter: S. DRAYTON & SONS 

Plymouth: W. F. WESTCOTT, 14 Frankfort Street 

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Ao^To-*. LT^NOX AND 

,; F.^UNDA'riONSj 

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Of Powderkam Ca$iU, 






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A preface is almost unnecessary, as my first chapter 
sufficiently explains the method I have adopted in the 
compilation of the following pages. 

I may mention, however, that this little volume is the 
partial result of the labours of more than twelve years, 
during which I have been constantly examining and 
noting original records of all kinds, both here, and in 
London, as most of my friends are well aware. 

I directed the late Mr. Dymond's attention to the papers, 
at the Guildhall, in connection with the murder of Mr. 
Petre, of Whipton, with the result that he soon afterwards 
included a notice of that unhappy episode, in the history 
of the Drewe family, in his paper on the "Old Inns and 
Taverns of Exeter," read before the ** Devonshire Asso- 
ciation" in 1880. I only mention this to avoid the 
suspicion of an unacknowledged plagiarism from one of his 
many valuable contributions to Devonshire history. It 
may be seen that his account differs from mine, in a some- 
what important particular. He says, that these papers give 
no report "as to the issue" of the sad affair, whereas the 
coroner's jury actually returned a verdict of " wilful mur- 
der " against Drewe, as I have stated in my text. 

Dr. Oliver notices the "Font" at Heavitree Church, with 
which he was " surprised and pleased." I have not 
referred to the present Font, which is modem, but the old 
one, which certainly merits much commendation, may 
still be seen in the grounds of "Hevitre" House, the 
picturesque residence of Sir Francis Clare Ford. It 
would be well if it could be restored to its original uses, if 
not to its natural situation. 

C. W. 

Heavitree, jfanuary 25M, 1892. 

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Introductory— John Hoker and his History of Exeter— Copied by 
the Isaacs— Hoker's work still in Manuscript— Its proposed publica- 
tion— Dr. Oliver's Notes — Their value— Their shortcomings — Mr. 
Dymond's Account of St. Leonard's — Previous Authors — Modern 
Heraldry — Caution as to future restorations — New Churches — Depen- 
dencies of Heavitree— Livery Dole Chapel - - Pagei i-6. 

The Parish of Heavitree.— Derivation— The Manor under the 
Saxons— Its Norman owners— The Kelly Family— The Barings of 
St. Leonard's— Manor of South Wonford— Queen Edith— Geoffiry de 
Mandeville— The House of Fitz-John— The Tirells— East Wonford 
Manor— Gervis and Speke— Ringswell— Exe Bridge— Whiting of 
Wood— Wonford Speke— The Manor House— Governor Hutchin- 
son of Massachusetts— The Manor of Whipton—" Master Will 
Petre"— Is murdered by Drewe— Finding of the Body— The Inquest 
and Verdict— The Murderer escapes— Berry of Barley— The Arms of 
Bankes— Matford House— Sir George Smith— Hall, Bishop .of Exeter 
—Lords of the Hundred— The Chapel of St. Eligius— Its descrip- 
tion— Its probable date— Referred to by Jenkins— Its endowments — 
Wardens of St. Loyes— Life of this Saint— Milton Abbot Church- 
Livery Dole— Its name explained- Its history— Its description— The 
Death of St. Clarus— Thomas Benet— Martyred at Livery Dole— The 
Iron Ring— Henry VI. at Heavitree— The RoUes and Livery Dole- 
Armorials of Denys, &c.— The Manor of Polslo— Its Priory— Pro- 
perty in Colyton, Payhembury, and elsewhere— Young ladies of 
quality— The Isaacks of Polslo — Remains of the Convent— St. 
James's Priory— The Church of Heavitree- Its description— Saints 
on the Tower Screen— Old Inscriptions— The Courtenay Arms— 
The Chapel of St. Anne— St. Sidwell's Church— St. David and St. 
Clement— The Manor of Duryard— The Gallows at Ringswell— Its 
victimsr-Execution for Witchcraft— Ducke's Alms-houses— Heavitree 
Charities ------ ^«^« 7-58. 

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The Parish of St. Leonard. — Some particulars of the Saint— The 
Church — Its foundation bv the Earl of Devon— Its early history — 
Avis of St. Leonard's— William de Vernon — Patrons of St. Leonard's 
— The Old Church— The Hermitage— Larkbeare— The Hulls— Rise 
and progress of the Baring Family — Mount Radford House— The 
City Gallows in Magdalen Road — Nicholas Duck — His portrait — 
Parker's Well — Lord Gifford — His descendant wins the Victoria 
Cross -..-..- Pages 59-73. 


Redvbrs and Courtenay. — The Fable as to the Origin of the latter 
Family — Prince Florus — Peter of France — He marries Elizabeth 
Courtenay — Princess Yolande — Courtenay Emperors of Constanti- 
nople — Michael Palaeologus — Reginald de Courtenay — His arrival in 
England — The Marriage of himself and son— Robert, Baron of Oke- 
hampton — The Redvers Family — Earls of Devon — Their descent, 
wavy, from the Dukes of Normandy — Their possessions in Devon- 
shire — The Isle of WighJ — Ralph de Avenel — Descent of the Worthes 
of Worth— Mary de Redvers marries Robert Courtenay — Death of 
Countess Isabella— Courtenay succeeds as Earl of Devon— The 
Redvers Seal — The Arms of Dol — The Courtenay Earls — Mis- 
fortunes of the French Courtenays — The Crown of Thorns — A 
Courtenay Marquess — Princess Katherine — Mendacious inscription — 
Little ** Chokebone "—Queen Mary's love— Co-heirs of Courtenay — 
Courtenay of Powderham— Courtenay Baronets— Courtenay Viscounts 
— Recovery of the Earldom — Further remarks on the Courtenay Arms 
— The High Tomb at Exeter— The Courtenay Label Pages 74-118. 


The Parish of Pinhoe.— King Ethelred II.— The Vikings— The 
Dubhgalls — Invasions of the Norsemen — Sweyn of the Forked Beard 
— The Battle of Pinhoe— A Martial Priest — Godwin, Earl of Kent— 
The Abbot of Battle— King William and Pinhoe— Robert de Vaux— 
His descendants— Sir Thomas Molton — Dacre of Gillesland— The 
Cheney Family — Pinhoe Church — Its Norman Font — Description of 
the Fabric—" The Poor Man of Pinhoe " — Some past Vicars — The 
Charities of Pinhoe — A Remarkable Funeral - Pages 119- 141. 


The Parish of St. Thomas. — Otherwise Cowick— Dedicated to 
St. Thomas of Canterbury — Cowick and Exwick — William Fitz- 

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Baldwin identified— His gift to Bee, in Normandy— Cowick Priory — 
Its exact situation— Ye EarPs Chamber— Burial-place of some of the 
Courtenays — The Chapel on Exe Bridge — Destroyed by a Flood — 
The Church of St. Thomas of Canterbury— Its description — Its Vicar 
hanged on the Tower — Cowick Barton— Its Ancient Graveyard de- 
scribed — Chapel of St. Michael — Recent discoveries— A Stone Coffin 
— The home of the Russells — Old Painted Glass — Badge of Edward 
Tudor, Prince of Wales— The Pate Family of Cowick— White- 
Abbott— Cowick Manor — The Priory of St. Mary of the Marsh — 
Hayes Barton^Floyer- Hayes — The Floyer Family — Bowhill — Barley 
House — The Old Bridewell— Oliver Family — Franklands and Cleave 
— Oldridge — Ancient Chapel — The Fate of Sacrilege — The Vicarage 
of St. Thomas — Parochial Charities - - Pages 142- 171. 


Alphington in Deanery of Kenne. — Origin of its name — Baldwin 
the Sheriff — William of Avenel again — Sir John de Neville — Nune- 
ham Iwerne and Nuneham Courcy — Courtenays of Alphington — 
Patrons of the Rectory — The Character of the Irish — Curious Letter 
from Sir William Courtenay — Alphington Church — Its description — 
Thunderstorm in 1826 — Alphington Cross — Charles Dickens— Matford 
Dinham — *' Maadford " — Marsh Barton — A Muscular Churchman — 
Extent of the " Cell," St. Mary's Acre— The " Admiral Vernon "— 
The Hamlyn Family — Hameline de Balun — ** Hamelinus" of Domes- 
day — The Hamlyns of Widecombe, Exeter, and Clovelly — Alphington 
Charities .-.-.- Pages 172-200. 

Additional Notes. — Bankes and Crossing — Synopsis of the Earldom 
of Devon — One or two Corrections - - Pages 200-202. 

General Index ..... Pages 203-210. 

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€^t ^uButBe of &)ct(tx. 


^INCE old John Hoker wrote his account of 

Exeter, which the Isaacs subsequently copied, 

with scant veracity, many attempts have been 

made to elucidate the history of our "faithful city." 

The greater portion of Hoker s work is still in 
manuscript, and, with the permission of the Town 
Council, which has been readily accorded me, I 
trust, at no distant day, to be enabled to publish it 
in its entirety and to annotate it with the result of 
my own researches amongst the City archives, and 
amongst other original documents with which I 
have been conversant for many years. But in 
the following pages I do not propose to deal 
with Exeter at all ; no previous effort has been 
made to write the history of its suburbs as a whole, 
and in those suburbs the most influential of our 
citizens are now accustomed to reside, and to resort 
to them day by day, for healthful rest and change, 
after their business toil is over. 

So I believe that the historical records which I 
have now collated, will not only add something, to 
what is known already, as to the four parishes 


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The Suburbs of Exeter, 

which extend immediately outside the ruined walls 
of ** Isca Danmoniorum," but that they will serve 
also to correct in some instances the careless and 
superficial statements which have been made by 
many able writers from time to time, who have 
unfortunately attempted more than they have been 
able to perform. 

It may be urged that places like Topsham, Stoke 
Canon, Powderham, Upton Pyne, and numerous 
other parishes similarly situated should have been 
included in my present work, but, had I attempted 
this, I should have erred precisely as those before 
me have erred : I should have professed too much, 
and in such case no satisfactory account of a single 
district could have been written, because the limits 
of the present volume would not have allowed it. 

So that instead of devoting one or two pages 
each, to incomplete histories of a dozen different 
parishes and their old inhabitants, as others have 
done before me (and even then many places and 
families with equal claims would have been neces- 
sarily excluded), I have thought it wiser to limit 
myself to an account of the ancient villages of 
Heavitree, St. Leonard's, Pinhoe, Cowick, commonly 
called St. Thomas, and Alphington, the whole of 
which are barely outside the limits of the municipal 

Good old Dr. Oliver has handed down to us 
many valuable notes as to these parishes, the 
result of his long labour amongst original local 
records. All his works possess the greatest possible 
value, and I should be sorry to depreciate them. We 
are all liable to make mistakes, and the doctor has 

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been no exception to the general rule. Fortunately 
he invariably printed the original Latin deeds and 
charters he has referred to whenever he was able 
to do so, although in many instances they contra- 
dict his assertions, and in others they furnish 
evidence which in the text of his works he has not 
supplied or which he has rather curiously admitted 
that he has been unable to procure. 

My late friend Mr. Robert Dymond, F.S.A., 
published many years ago a small pamphlet which 
gives a most . interesting sketch of the parish of 
St. Leonard's. His invariable painstaking accuracy 
characterises it throughout, and it is very pleasantly 
written, but he has told us nothing whatever as to 
the early history and origin of the parish, and 
indeed has given it as his opinion that such par- 
ticulars " would never be recovered." 

With these few prefatory observations I may 
almost leave the following pages to tell their own 
story ; I only trust that they will prove as accept- 
able, as I believe they will, not only to my own 
immediate neighbours, but to many Devonshire 
men resident elsewhere — not to those alone who can 
claim a birthright in Exeter or its suburbs, but to 
all those who proudly boast that they belong to 
Devonshire, to all the many lovers and admirers 
of the fair Capital of the West, and of our beautiful 
and charming county as well, — and their name is 
indeed " legion." If my hopes are realised in these 
respects it will be easy to extend my plan, and to 
follow the present work with another upon the 
** neighbourhood " of Exeter. 

Whether previous attempts to write the history 

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The Stcburbs of Exeter, 

of the city proper, have been entirely satisfactory, 
I leave others to decide; the attempts have been 
made, and the road therefore has been practically 
closed to further essays, but not to my projected 
transcription of the original manuscript of Hoker, 
and to its annotation from the public records and 
municipal archives ; but, as the general history of 
the suburbs still remained to be written, I have felt 
justified in my endeavour to place it before the 
public in an attractive and readable form, in ac- 
cordance, I trust, with the requirements of modem 

Therefore I have not burthened the text with 
references. I have carefully read and studied the 
various records, and the authors who have gone 
before me, and by collating thq various accounts 
of these with the former, I have been able to 
correct them in many instances ; in others I have 
been enabled to add much fresh information. 

But previous authors have never attempted any- 
thing beyond scattered and desultory information. 
One has said something on one point, another on 
another. The late Mr. Dymond's effort in con- 
nection with St. Leonard's has been the only- 
real attempt at a complete history of any particular 
suburb or parish, as I have remarked already. 

Nor have I thought it necessary to re-print lists 
of Vicars or Priors, which Dr. Oliver collected 
and printed. They are to be found either in 
his " Ecclesiastical Antiquities " or else in his 
" Monasticon of the Diocese.'* But I have verified 
many of his lists from the Episcopal Registers, 
and I have specially noticed such clerics as by 

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their lives and actions have appeared to me worthy 
of particular mention, as in the case of Bishop 
Godwin, of Heavitree, and in other instances. 

In conclusion, I have thought it inexpedient to 
devote any space to modem Heraldry, sepulchral 
or otherwise, of which there are numerous examples 
at Heavitree and elsewhere. Many of these are the 
true bearings of well-known families, and will be at 
once recognised upon inspection. Others have not 
the slightest pretensions to represent the people 
they intend to commemorate. The true bearings 
will be appreciated without my aid, and it would 
be perhaps invidious and unpopular to distinguish 
them from the false in these pages. At all events, 
I have not attempted such an unpleasant and un- 
popular task, and have therefore said nothing as to 
modern Heraldry. 

But I offer this caution, that in future "restora- 
tions," well-meaning persons may not allow them- 
selves to be over-persuaded, to render themselves 
ridiculous, through the persuasions of officious and 
ignorant pseudo-authorities. People have a right 
to armorials, or they have no such right. In the 
former case they can easily prove it, or, if they 
are doubtful, they can acquire it ; if they have no 
right, save that they believe to be conveyed by 
identity of name, with someone who has a right, 
which is a very false belief, then it is above all 
things culpable to place such spurious achieve- 
ments in God's house. But it will be found that 
when anything can be gained by describing autho- 
rised armorials I have not neglected to afford them 
the comment to which they are justly entitled. 

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The Suburbs of Exeter, 

I should add to what I have said in the text, that 
handsome modem churches have been provided for 
the districts of Whipton and South Wonford, but 
that these ancient manors are still within the 
Parish of Heavitree, and do not form separate 
ecclesiastical districts. The ancient extent of this 
parish will be better understood when I mention 
that it is still nominally, but not actually, the 
mother church of St. Sidwell's, St. James*, St. 
Matthew's, St. David's, and St. Michael's, besides 
the two dependent chapelries of Whipton and Won- 
ford. The Livery-Dole Chapel, once a chantry, 
is now merely a domestic chapel, and intended for 
the convenience of the alms-folk. 

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nrHE pleasant village of Heavitree, with the 
^ hamlets of East and South Wonford, and 
Whipton, may be looked upon as the most impor- 
tant suburb of Exeter, since the parish originally 
included also the whole of the land to the east and 
north of the fortifications of the city, and the 
Churches of St. Sidwell and St. David were merely 
chapelries dependent on it. It is distant about a 
mile from the ancient Guildhall, and upon the 
London road, and belongs to the Deanery of 
" Christianity," or Exeter. 

Lysons says that the Manor of Wonford "an- 
ciently gave name to the parish," but such is not 
the case, and in view of the various discrepancies 
and inaccuracies, not only contained in the "Magna 
Britannia," but also in the works of Risdon, West- 
cote, Jenkins, and other authors, who have included 
a notice of this parish in their several works, 
I think that it will be better to state simply 
the result of my own recent investigations, without 
any reference to previously printed statements. 

The word " Heavitree " is most probably derived 
from "Ave" or "Avon," water, and "Tre," the 
British word for a town or settlement, and it is 

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8 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

distinctly mentioned in the Domesday Record as 
the manor of ** Hevetruua." 

In the reign of Edward the Confessor it was the 
property of " Wichin " the Saxon, and was held in 
the year 1087 by Roger, under Ralph de Pomeroy. 
This Roger was probably the ancestor of the Pycots, 
who were the owners of Heavitree Manor in the 
thirteenth century, and in the year 1274 it was 
held by "John Kelly, under John de Pycot." A 
little later the Kellys themselves became the chief 
lords, and John de Kelly was the owner in 13 16, as 
proved by the " Nomina Villarum/' He was the 
father of Thomas Kelly, whose son, Richard, was 
the grandfather of Oliver Kelly, "Lord of the 
Manor of Heavitree," whose son John granted a 
piece of ground for the erection of a Church House, 
eleventh of September, 15 16. Until late in the 
eighteenth century, the manor of Heavitree des- 
cended in the Kelly family, and in 1773 Arthur 
Kelly sold it to John Baring, of St. Leonard's, who 
re-sold it in 1 816 to his cousin, Sir Thomas Baring. 
Lord Poltimore is the present Lord of the Manor. 

The Manor of South Wonford, anciently 
written " Wenfort," was originally royal demesne, 
and the property of Queen Edith, wife of the 
Confessor. William the Conqueror assumed it in 
his turn, and it remained with the Crown until 
the reign of Henry I., who gave it to his follower, 
Geoffry de Mandeville. It was answerable for half 
a hide of land, which twenty ploughs could work 
at the period of the Survey. 

King Stephen resumed the Manor and gave it to 
Ralph de Taisson, as shown by the Exchequer Rolls. 

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The Parish of Heavitree, 

It was subsequently alienated from the latter, in 
punishment for the rebellion of one of the owners, 
in the reign of King John, and was restored by 
that monarch to the Mandeville family, in the 
person of Robert, son of Roger de Mandeville, 
some time Castellan of Exeter. With a daughter 
"^ of Robert de Mandeville, the Manor of Won ford 
passed to William Fitz-John, who I think must 
have been a brother of Matthew Fitz-John, who 
was appointed Castellan of Exeter by Edward I. 
in [287 — for life — and who served the office of 
Sheriff of Devon in the following year. This 
Matthew Fitz-John had no children. He was the 
descendant of Herbert Fitz-Herbert, chamberlain 
to King Stephen, and the grandson of Matthew 
Fitz-Herbert, to whom King John granted the 
Manor of Stokenham, near Kingsbridge, and the 
children of John, second son of the latter Matthew, 
called themselves Fitz-John. 

William Fitz-John seems to have left a daughter, 
Joan, who married Tirell, usually corrupted into 
" Tilly.'* Henry "Tirell,*' and Joan his wife, were 
the owners of the Manor of South Wonford in 
1387, and in their family it seems to have continued 
for some generations, when it passed, probably by 
bequest, to the Walronds, who had owned it for 
** some descents," in Sir William Pole's time. 
Joan, sister of Henry Walrond of Bradfield, had 
married William " Tylley," or Tirell, of Canning- 
ton, Co. Somerset, late in the fifteenth century, and 
appears to have died issueless. At some subse- 
quent period, the Kellys, being Lords of Heavitree 
Manor, added Wonford to their other property, 

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lo The Siiburbs of Exeter. 

and Arthur Kelly, in 1775, conveyed it to John 
Baring, who sold it, with Heavitree, to his cousin. 
Sir Thomas Baring, in 181 6. 

The Manor of East Wonford, written " Wen- 
forde" in Domesday, was in Saxon times the 
property of "Edmer," and was given by the 
Conqueror to his trusted follower, Ruald Adobat, 
under whom it was held by Walter de Osmund- 
villa. At an early period it belonged to the 
Spekes, and probably came to them by inheritance 
through Gervis. 

I have come to this conclusion because a portion 
of the neighbouring estate of Ringswell, which 
Lysons incorrectly calls a Manor, but which seems 
to have been merely parcel of one of the Manors 
of Wonford, was held under Ralph Tolero by John 
Prudhome in 1274, as shown by the "Hundred 
Rolls/' But previously to this date, Robert de 
Mandeville had given the " whole of that portion 
of Ringswell situated on the north side of the 
road '* to Nicholas, son of Walter Gervis, who had 
been Mayor of Exeter in 12 18, and the founder of 
the first bridge over Exe River. 

Nicholas Gervis had a son, Walter, whose daugh- 
ter, Alice Gervis, brought the whole of her paternal 
property to her husband. Sir William Speke. The 
latter conveyed his portion of Ringswell to Sir 
John Wiger, and the Prudhomes or Pridhams seem 
ultimately to have acquired the whole through 
Stapleton, and it at length passed, with the 
heiress of Pridham, to Whiting, of Wood. Agnes, 
daughter and co-heir of John Whiting, of Wood, 
married Henry Walrond, the brother of Joan 

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The Parish of Heavitree. ii 

Walrond, wife of William Tilley before mentioned. 
But the Spekes continued to hold East Wonford 
Manor for many generations, and thus it obtained 
the name of Wonford Speke, by which it is now 
usually known. Sir William Speke, the first of 
Wonford, was the grandson of Richard L'Espec, 
the descendant of that Walter L'Espec who was 
the munificent founder of the great Abbeys of 
Kirkham, Rivaulx and Warden. Sir Thomas 
Speke, of White Lackington, was knighted by 
Henry VIII. and was a Gentleman of the Privy 
Chamber to Edward VI. He sold Wonford Speke 
to Hurst, of Exeter, and, with Agnes, daughter 
and heir of William Hurst, it passed in marriage 
to George Bodley, of Dunscombe, near Crediton, 
first cousin of John, father of the renowned Sir 
Thomas Bodley, of Oxford. The Bodleys sold the 
Manor to Sir George Smith, of whom I shall have 
occasion to speak presently, and in Sir William 
Pole's time it belonged to Sir George's great- 
grandson, then a minor. Subsequently the estates 
of the Manor became divided. The Manor house 
was long the residence of a branch of the Pine 
family, whose arms may still be seen over the 
entrance. In 1663, William Hutchinson emigrated 
to New England from Lincolnshire, and became 
one of the founders of Boston, on the other side of 
the water. At the time of the American Revolution 
in 1776, the descendant of this William was the 
Governor of Massachusetts, and through his fidelity 
to the Crown of England he lost the whole of his 
American property. The family then returned to 
England, and resided for many years at East Won- 

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12 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

ford House, and are still connected with this County. 
The present representative lives at Sidmouth. 

Sir Moris Ximenes owned Wonford House in 
1822. The Manor House of South Wonford was 
long the property of the Spicers of Weare. The 
large and imposing mansion near the church, 
known as Heavitre House, is a converted cottage 
of some antiquity, but is chiefly a modern erection, 
and was built by the late Richard Ford, author of 
the " Handbook to Spain/' The gardens and 
lawns are very attractively laid out, and the house 
has been fitted with a good deal of ancient carved 
oak. The present owner, who resides abroad, is 
Sir Clare Ford, of the Diplomatic Service. 

The Manor of Whipton, at the north-eastern 
end of the Parish of Heavitree, is written " Wiple- 
ton," in Domesday, and was also owned by ** Wichin" 
in Saxon times. At the Conquest it was given to 
William Capra or Chievre. It has long been sub- 
ject to the Bampfyldes, and now belongs to Lord 
Poltimore, but in i6i i it was certainly the residence 
^^^ of a branch of the Petre family, of Tor Brian, the 
collateral relatives of Lord Petre. Sir George Petre, 
Kt., of Hayes, in St. Thomas, had certain consider- 
able property in the neighbourhood of Whipton, a 
portion of which he alienated in 1626. 

One January afternoon in 161 1 "Master Will 
Petre,*' of Whipton House, and two of the Drews, 
then of Killerton, rode into Exeter together. 

They appear to have been drinking at various 
ale houses all the rest of the day, and towards 
evening they adjourned together to the Dolphin 
Inn, then kept by George Northcote, to call upon 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 13 

Sir Edward Seymour, of Berry, who happened to 
be staying there. 

They found Sir Edward engaged at cards, and he 
borrowed some gold of ** Will Petre." The three 
visitors seem to have been very noisy, but after a 
little while they departed together, Petre on foot, 
the two Drews on horseback, and went to the 
"Bear Inn,*' where they had some more "drink/' 

Petre then ordered his horse, mounted, and the 
three friends started homewards between the hours 
of seven and eight o'clock, when it was, of course, 
quite dark. The elder Drew was dressed in white, 
and had a short sword, the other two wore rapiers. 

Edward Drew and Petre seem to have ridden in 
advance of John Drew, and to have proceeded at a 
furious pace through the East Gate and up St. 

Presently Edward Drew returned and met his 
brother John, with the remark that he had " lost 
Will Petre." 

The two brothers then rode on as far as St. 
Anne's Chapel, where they both noticed a candle 
in one of the houses, and called there to ask if 
"Mr. Petre was within," and were told that he 
was not. 

So they rode on to Whipton House, where they 
found Petre's riderless horse standing at the gate. 
They knocked up the servants at Whipton, handed 
over the horse, but professed ignorance as to the 
fate of its master, and then both went on to 

The next morning the dead body of William 
Petre, with a deep cut in the head, was found in the 

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14 Ihe Suburbs of Exeter, 

roadway near to St. Anne's Chapel, and the depo- 
sitions given before the Recorder, William Martyn, 
and the Coroner, William Tyckell, and dated the 
twenty-sixth of January, 1611, are still preserved 
amongst the Exeter municipal archives. 

These depositions are very voluminous, and seem 
to prove clearly that Petre was murdered by 
Edward Drew. 

Motive was shown, in that Drew had borrowed 
"some money'* of a certain old Mr. Halse, of 
Exeter, to the amount of ;^5, that Petre had been 
his security, and had had to pay the money, which 
his, Edward's mother, had since repaid, but there 
had evidently been ill blood between the quondam 
friends, and Edward Drew had been heard to say 
" he rideth fast, but I will ride faster, and will give 
him a nick before he gets home." He was also 
observed to have had his sword drawn when riding 
after Petre. 

In re-examination John Drew gave a detailed 
account of the murder of Petre by his brother, 
but denied his statement again the same night. 

The verdict of the jury was "Wilful murder 
against Edward Drew," and John Drew was found 
to have been an accessory after the fact. Whether 
Edward Drew got away out of the country, or 
how this most unfortunate business was settled, 
there is now no means of ascertaining. Probably 
the interest of the young men's father was suffi- 
ciently powerful to hush the matter up. This 
was Edward Drew, Serjeant at Law, "the great 
ornament of his profession," as Prince calls him 
in the "Worthies of Devon," "who lies buried 

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The Parish of Heavttree. 15 

in Broad-clist Church, with the effigies of his four 
sons and three daughters kneeling around him." 
So the "counterfeit presentment*' of young Edward 
Drew, the third son, is still preserv^ed in some 

He died unmarried, and was interred at Broad- 
hembury, on the eighth of June, 1636, having 
survived his father fourteen years. His brother 
John, also implicated in Petre's murder, probably 
died before 1620, as his name is omitted in the 
pedigree recorded by the heralds in that year. 

A portion of the Petre property, in St. Thomas, 
came into the hands of the Berry s, and Bartho- 
lomew Berry, whose will was proved on the seventh 
of February, 1636, was of Lower Barley, in that 

He married twice, but died without issue, and 
his nephews, sons of his brother John Berry, of 
Chittlehampton — descended from Richard, third 
son of John Berry, of Berry Narber — succeeded to 
his property. Of these nephews, John Berry, the 
eldest, was Vicar of Heavitree and Canon ot 
Exeter, and of him I shall have occasion to speak 
again ; Bartholomew Berry succeeded to Barley, 
and lived there, and probably also to Whipton 

This Bartholomew Berry, by his wife Margery 
Hatch, had two daughters, co-heirs, and Margaret, 
the eldest of them, married William Bankes, who 
was instituted to the Vicarage of Heavitree on the 
resignation of his wife's uncle, on the twenty-fifth of 
February, 1645, having been married at St. Sidwell's 
Church on the tw^enty-first of the preceding month. 

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1 he Suburbs of Exeter, 

Mr. Bankes has been stated by Walker (**SufFering-s 
of the Clerg-y") and by Dr. Oliver to have married '* a 
daughter of John Berry, his predecessor at Heavi- 
tree," which is an evident 'error, as shown by the 
St. Sidweirs Register. Mr. Bankes' son, John 
Bankes, succeeded to Whipton Barton, and appears 
to have married a daughter of the well-knowm 
Exeter house of Crossing, since the arms of Bankes, 
a cross engrailed between four fleur-de-lis, and those 
of Crossing, with the date 1697, are. upon the pillars 
at the entrance to Whipton House, and, as the 
Rev. William Bankes was buried at Heavitree on 
the fourth of August, 1697, the date on these pillars 
seems to commemorate the accession of his son to 
the property. The arms of Bankes, as blazoned 
above, are also to be seen in stained glass in 
the house. No. 171 Fore Street, Exeter, at present 
occupied by Messrs. Pearse & Co., drapers, and, 
sad to say, they now appear on their bill-heads, 
and have been adopted as a trade-mark by that 
enterprising firm. 

The interesting old dwelling known as Matford 
House, in Wonford Lane, was built for his own 
habitation by Sir George Smith, a merchant, and 
Mayor of Exeter 1586, 1607. It certainly is not 
identical with the manor mentioned by Risdon as 
at one time the property of De Bosco, and then of 
Dinham, nor do I think it was ever a manor at 
all, and, despite the coincidence of its being exactly 
opposite the Manor of Matford, in the Parish of 
Alphington, its name may be accounted for without 
reference either to the latter property or to the ford 
in the river below it. Sir George Smith was twice 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 17 

married. By his first wife he had a daughter, 
Elizabeth, mother of the famous General Monk, 
Duke of Albemarle; by his second wife, Grace, 
daughter and co-heir of William Viell, of Madford, 
near Launceston, he had a daughter, Grace, wife of 
the equally celebrated Sir Bevil Grenville. Thus 
Sir George Smith became intimately connected 
with the principal actors in the matter of the 
Restoration, for Sir John Grenville and General 
Monk were, of course, first cousins, and it was 
through the influence exercised by the former over 
the latter that Monk was induced to see the error 
of his ways, and to act as he did in favour of the 
return of the King. 

At a later period, Madford House was the tem- 
porary residence of Dr. Joseph Hall, Bishop of 
Exeter, and in his time the place was known as 
" Maydeworthie alias Madforde within the Parish 
of Heavitree." From here, in 1632, on the twenty- 
second of October, his lordship instituted John 
Radforde to the Rectory of Thelbridge, and he 
transacted other episcopal business from this house 
down to May, 1633. 

In 1822, Madford was the property of James 
Oliver. The royal arms and supporters of Queen 
Elizabeth may be seen over the doorway of this 
interesting old mansion, which has been recently 
thoroughly repaired. 

Although the families of Boyes or Dinham were 
never connected with this property, yet if the 
name Madford or Maydworthy had been given to 
it by Sir George Smith, it is singular that Risdon 
should have confused it, as he evidently has done, 


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1 8 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

with one of the two manors of Madford mentioned 
in the Survey, and which are almost certainly 
situated at Alphington and Hemlock, Matford in 
Exminster having been a barton of the former 

Lysons and Jenkins tell us that the Manor of 
South Wonford was at one time in the "Montacutes, 
Earls of Salisbury, afterwards in the Courtenays, 
Earls of Devon." This mis-statement has origi- 
nated by confusing the manor with the great 
hundred of the same name. Simon de Montacute, 
father of the first Earl of Salisbury, was lord of 
the Hundred of Wonford, and died in 13 15. In 
the following year, Hugh de Courtenay's name 
occurs as lord of the hundred, not of the manor, 
and the Courtenay arms — Or, three torteaux — may 
still be seen upon the arcading of Heavitree Church, 
without the label of three points, which was not 
used by the Courtenays until they had succeeded 
to the earldom in 1335, as I have more than once 
explained elsewhere. But the Courtenays were 
lords of that portion of Exminster Manor which 
extended into Heavitree Parish, as shown by exist- 
ing deeds, the two portions of the said manor being 
connected by the ford over the Exe near Salmon 

The ancient chapel dedicated to St. Eligius, anglic€ 
St. Loye, but now desecrated, is situated in the 
valley below Heavitree Bridge, and, together with 
a few acres of land and some alms-houses on the 
high ground above it, is the property of the Parish 
of Heavitree. 

This structure, roughly built of the local stone. 

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The Parish of Heaviiree. 19 

consists of a nave forty feet long, and originally, 
according to Dr. Oliver, twenty-two feet broad. 
The width, however, has decreased considerably, 
since portions of the eastern and western walls 
have entirely disappeared, and the whole of that 
on the north side is gone altogether, and has 
been replaced by a thick wall of Devonshire cob. 
The latter is pierced with two large modem door- 
ways, and there is no vestige of the original 

The chapel is lighted on the south side by 
three very graceful lancet windows, now partially 
walled up. They are very much splayed on the 
inside, and over eight feet high. The western 
window has been blocked up with stone, but 
enough of it remains to show that it was a double 
lancet; the muUion, dividing the lights, has 
perished, but the remains of featherings prove 
that the head was pierced with a quatrefoil. The 
eastern window is a plain quatrefoil opening, and 
save that the glass is gone it has not been inter- 
fered with at all. Both these windows, like the side 
lights, diverge very considerably on the inside. 
The tiled roof is of rather high pitch. There is no 
trace of the crosses on the gables which are figured 
in an old lithograph, but the stone cross which 
anciently stood at the western end of the building 
has been removed to the adjoining field, and may 
still be seen there. 

On entering the once sacred structure I found 
myself ankle deep in fodder; a rough flooring 
divides it into two storeys, and there is a rack for 
forage extending along the south wall, the building 

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20 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

having been for many years used as a cattle shed. 

Through the broad interstices of the very dila- 
pidated flooring I could see that the roof was 
anything but water-tight. The piscina on the 
south side is still very evident, although the 
aperture has been filled up with rubble, and the 
mouldings have been removed or are invisible. 
I could trace the form of the trefoiled head quite 

The groined ceiling fell down many long years 

The width of the side windows on the outside 
is about a foot, on the inside about four feet; 
those at the eastern and western ends are of course 
proportionately broader. 

Judging from the style of the eastern and western 
windows, I should consider that the whole structure 
is of late Early English date, the latter end of the 
thirteenth century or commencement of the four- 

The present Vicar of Heavitfee, the Rev. S. 
Berkeley, has interested himself in the preserva- 
tion of this ancient building, which it is now in 
contemplation to restore, not before it is time, for 
it hardly looks as if it could stand another winter 
without attention. 

Jenkins ("History of Exeter," page 438), writing- 
in 1806, says: "From east, the rivulet directs its 
course to West Wonford through beautiful meadows, 
and in a serpentine course glides near the Chapel 
of St. Eligius. This very ancient edifice was a few 
years since entire, consisting of a nave and chancel, 
and, fi-om some remains of the Decalogue painted 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 21 

on the eastern end, it appears to have been used 
for sacred service since the Reformation; it has 
long been desecrated, and its revenues appropriated 
to the relief of the poor. The building has been of 
late years much neglected, and from want of neces- 
sary repairs the vaulted roof and one side fell very 
lately into ruins; the remains are now converted 
into a stable." 

" Near this is a cot-house patched up from old 
materials, and some part of it appears of age coeval 
with the chapel ; probably it was the habitation of 
the officiating priest." 

There is no defined chancel, and the traces of 
painting referred to by Jenkins were invisible to 
my eyes. I do not think the cottage he refers to, 
now pulled down, was the abode of the officiating 

Although the rent of the land in which it is 
situated is certainly now appropriated to the use of 
the poor, yet from the character of the foundation 
it is more than unlikely that it had ever any 
ecclesiastical endowment. 

An anonymous writer in the Western Antiqitary 
some time since described it as the " Site of the 
Abbey of St. Layes, or Loyes," of which he said 
he believed " there were still some remains." But 
the chapel had no monastic origin. It was merely 
a domestic chapel, and is first mentioned, in Bishop 
Brantyngham's "Register," in 1387; although, as 
I said above, the existing remains are sufficient to 
prove that it was built at least eighty-seven years 

The following is a translation of the entry refer- 

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22 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

ring to it : "At Clyst, first of April, 1387, the Lord 
(Bishop) granted a license to Henry Tirell and 
Joan, his wife, that the Divine oflRces might be 
celebrated by a fit Priest in presence of themselves, 
or either of them, in the Chapel of St. Eligius, 
within their manor of Woneford, situated in the 
parish of Hevytre, and especially on the morrow 
of the Holy Trinity every year, save prejudice to 
the Mother Church, and during the pleasure of 
the Bishop." (Brantyngham's " Register," Vol. i., 
fol. 171.) 

It has been assumed that the " cot " referred to 
by Jenkins was built on the site of the old manor 
house, and that the chapel was within the manor 
or mansion house in which Henry Tirell resided. 
I do not think, however, that the word " mansionem " 
bears any such construction. Had it been situated 
within the boundary of the manor house, the word 
employed would have been mansum or mansum 
capitale. "Mansio" is always used in Domesday 
to express a manor, and may be cited in this 
particular instance. Exeter Domesday, fol. 95 b.. 
Rex habet i manstonem qtUB vacatur Wenfort. 

St. Loyes was probably built by one of the Fitz- 
Johns at the end of the thirteenth century, and 
passed by marriage to Henry Tirell, who must 
have been an aged man when the bishop licensed 
it in 1387. 

As already seen, the Manor of Wonford was 
afterwards in the Walronds, and passed subse- 
quently to Kelly. William Baring purchased it 
of the latter, and sold it to his cousin. Sir Thomas 
Baring, in 181 6. 

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The Parish of Heaviiree. 23 

As for St, Loyes and the ground around it, the 
property was in fourths in 1588, and on the nine- 
teenth of January in that year, John Lye and 
William Glanfeylde granted one-fourth to twelve 
trustees for the use of the poor of Heavitree, in 
consideration of ;^38 paid them out of the Parish 

The " Parish Stock," as it is termed in records, 
appears to have been a consolidation of sums left 
from time to time by the charitable for the use of 
the poor; in the generality of ancient wills the 
testator invariably leaves something, from a shil- 
ling upwards, for the benefit of the poor of his 

At Heavitree, amongst other donors to this stock, 
may be mentioned Andrew Geare, who flourished 
in 1588, John Leighe, or Lye, his contemporary, 
who gave £t 13^. 4^/., William Cove, and others. 

Another fourth of St. Loyes was conveyed by 
John Clement in 1625 for similar purposes, the 
money consideration being;^52. 

The moiety (that is, the remaining two-fourths) 
was conveyed also for similar purposes, by Philip 
Ducke, on the seventh and eighth of February, 1664, 
for £\2^ ys. ^d,y to John Izacke and other trustees. 
This moiety consisted of three messuages and nine 
acres of land. One of the three messuages was 
the Chapel of St. Loye ; another the cot farmhouse 
mentioned by Jenkins ; the third, a barn at the top 
of the hill, to the north of the chapel. 

In 1689 it was settled that three-fourths of St. 
Loyes was to remain for the common affairs, benefit, 
and good of the parish of Heavitree, to be employed 

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24 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

at the discretion of the feoflFees of the parish lands ; 
the other fourth to the use and behoof of the poor 
of the parish. 

The affairs of St. Loyes from 1588, when the first 
fourth was purchased, appear to have been managed 
by two parochial oflftcers, known as "Wardens of 
St. Loyes," whose election was annual. Their 
accounts are extant from that year. 

From 1625 there seems to have been only one 
warden, who was distinct from the feoffees. In 1 77 1 
his ofiice was abolished, as shown by the accounts 
of the Rev. J. Simons, a trustee, who says that he 
had undertaken the oflB.ce of treasurer and acting 
trustee, or, "as it had heretofore been called, the 
oflB.ce of Warden of St. Loyes." 

With the abolition of the office of warden, the 
chapel doubtless began to fall into decay. With 
the exception of the Church of St. Pancras, at 
Exeter, recently restored, it seems to be one of 
the earliest complete specimens of ecclesiastical 
architecture in this neighbourhood, and it is much 
to be desired that the funds necessary for its repair 
may be forthcoming, and that it will cease to be 
used as a cowshed any longer. 

In 1 8 14, the old barn I have referred to, at the 
top of the hill, was converted into two cottages, at 
a cost of ;^ 161 4^. 7^. These were inhabited by 
poor persons, placed there by trustees. Of late 
years they have been rebuilt, and are now neat 
and appropriate buildings. 

St. Eligius, or St. Loye (in French, St. Eloy), 
was bom at Catelet, near Limoges, about the year 
588. He was of good parentage, and was placed 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 25 

in early life with a goldsmith, named Abbo, who 
was master of the mint at Limoges. 

After he had learnt his business he went to Paris, 
and had a commission from King Clotaire II. to 
make him a state chair or throne, with gold and 
gems given him for the purpose. With the mate- 
rials supplied Loye made two chairs, instead of 
one, and his honesty so delighted the king that 
he took him into the household and made him 
master of the mint at Paris. His name occurs on 
several gold coins struck at Paris in the reigns of 
Dagobert I. and his son Clovis II. 

He was very religious, and was remarkable for 
the zeal with which he sang the canonical office 
twice daily in his own house, with the assistance 
of his servants and dependents. Hence he was a 
very suitable saint to become the patron of a 
domestic chapel. 

He was subsequently admitted to the priesthood, 
and was consecrated Bishop of Noyon in 640, on 
the Sunday before Rogation week, at Rouen. 

He died of fever on the first of December, 659, 
being over seventy years old. He was buried in 
the Church of St. Lupus, of Troyes, and his fi-iend 
St. Owen, who wrote his life thirteen years after- 
ward, tells us that the church was afterwards known 
as St. Eligius, and that many miracles followed 
his death. 

I am not aware that any church in this county is 
dedicated to St. Eligius, but he is sometimes con- 
founded with St. Egidius, or Giles. The late Dr. 
Oliver, in his list of Devonshire Dedications, Sup- 
plement to the Monasticon of the Diocese, page 45 1, 

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26 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

says that Milton Abbot Church is dedicated to St. 
Eligius and St. Constantine. Mr. Brooking Rowe, 
F.S.A., Devonshire Association TransactionSy 1882, 
copies Dr. Oliver. Mr. Winslow Jones, Western 
Antiquary y Vol. VI., page 271, makes the same 
statement on the authority of Dr. Oliver. 

It is not the case, however. Milton Abbot is 
dedicated, as I have remarked in " Devonshire 
Parishes," Vol. i., pages 293, 295, to St. Giles and 
St. Constantine, and the writers I have referred to 
have unfortunately perpetuated a misprint in the 
Monasticon, which is given correctly in another 
portion of the same work. In the confirmation 
of divers churches to the Monks of Tavistock, 
Bishop Quivil's "Register," fol. 123, it is thus 
written, ^^ Ecclesiam SS. Constantini et Egidit de 
Middeltony' that is, the Church of St. Constantine 
and St. Giles of Milton. 

The alms-houses at Livery Dole, with their 
ancient chapel, are pleasantly situated on the high 
ground between Exeter and Heavitree, and are 
contiguous to the latter village. 

In the middle ages it was usual to inflict the 
punishment of death not only in assize or county 
towns, but also in those country villages, many in 
number, whose manorial lords exercised capital 
jurisdiction within their manors. The gallows, 
" furcaB," were invariably erected at the intersection 
of four roads as symbolical of the cross, and the 
cross-road at Livery Dole being conveniently 
situated outside the city, but within a mile of 
Exeter Castle, was from very early times the usual 
place of execution for county criminals. 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 27 

The name of Livery Dole, as I have explained in 
"Practical Heraldry," page 212, is derived from 
the French word " livrer," to deliver or give ; and 
thus from time to time it has really signified any- 
thing given or delivered, and the distribution of 
food or alms among the poor have been called 
"liveries." "Dole" is a Saxon word which literally 
means a part or pittance, thence an alms. 

I incline to the opinion that the place received 
its name, because this chapel was unendowed, and 
depended for its support upon the gifts or alms of 
the charitable, who, by their free oflFerings, thus 
provided for prayers and masses for the souls of 
departed criminals. 

Jenkins, in his "History of Exeter," gives a 
different reason, and says that it was so called 
"because the Magistrates and citizens in their 
Midsummer watch and other public processions, 
dressed in their livery gowns, here dispensed their 
alms to the poor." This explanation, however, is 
scarcely likely to be correct, if for no other reason, 
because the spot is outside the limits of the ancient 
" glacis " of the Exeter fortifications, and therefore 
beyond the jurisdiction of the city authorities. 

The earliest existing mention of Livery Dole 
occurs in a deed dated Exeter, the first of August, 
1279; and in another deed of 2nd Richard H., 
1379, some land is said to be bounded by " the 
highway leading from Lever-dole towards Monkin- 
lake," and again in 1440 there is record of "the 
lane called Rygway, which leads from Levery Dole 
up the highway leading from Exeter to Polslo." 

There is no mention of Livery Dole Chapel in 

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2 8 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

a deed preserved at the Guildhall, dated in 141 8, 
which mentions the Chapels of St. Loye and of St. 
Clement. Still, the *' doles" may have been pro- 
vided for prayers or masses for the objects I have 
mentioned, to be said in the Chapel of Exeter 
Castle, or even in Heavitree Church, and the 
absence of a chapel at Livery Dole, the place of 
execution, where the alms of the charitable were 
collected and given to the priest, would not inter- 
fere with my supposed origin of the name. 

In the Chapter Roll of 1439 it is duly referred to 
as "the Chapel of St. Clams without the South 
Gate, within the parish of Hevetre." The record 
does not say, as might have been expected from 
the tenour of similar records, that it was then 
newly built, but we may fairly assume that the 
present structure, at all events, was erected between 
14 1 8 and 1439. It cannot have superseded an 
earlier chapel dedicated to St. Clement, because 
the latter in several deeds is plainly described as 
" situated near the river Exe." 

The chapel, which is built of red Heavitree stone, 
is supported by strong buttresses. The tracery of 
the eastern window is a mixture of the late Decora- 
ted and Early Perpendicular style, and is probably 
original. The side windows, which are square, 
with label weather mouldings, are of late Per- 
pendicular date, and were probably inserted when 
the chapel was utilised for its present purposes in 
the sixteenth century. The building consists of a 
nave, of which the chancel is a continuation ; the 
doorway is at the western end. The interior has 
been restored and the windows filled with stained 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 

The Parish of Heavttree. 29 

glass. There are no visible remains of the 

The chapel was not dedicated to " St. Clara," as 
stated in Oliver's "Exeter," edit. 1861, but to St. 
Clams, an English missionary, probably in refer- 
ence to the manner of his death. He was murdered 
in Normandy by two ruffians, at the instigation 
of an unprincipled woman of good position whose 
unholy advances he had rejected, and thus died a 
" Martyr to chastity " A.D. 894. 

In addition to the ordinary executions by hang- 
ing, several persons were burnt to death at Livery 
Dole, the punishment at one time appointed for 
witchcraft, heresy, and for several particularly 
heinous crimes for which the usual method of 
execution was considered too good. 

It appears from the calendar to a psalter in the 
possession of the Dean and Chapter of Exeter that 
a certain person called Drew Steyner was burnt 
here on the seventh of August, 143 1. 

Thomas Benet, M.A., who came to this city from 
Oxford, was accused of heresy in 1531. He was a 
schoolmaster in Exeter, and was a married man 
with a family. He caused one of his sons to place 
a paper on the doors of the Cathedral, upon which 
he had written the following words : — " The Pope is 
Antichrist, and we ought to worship God only, and 
no saints." 

The son was detected, by a citizen, going to early 
Mass, who carried him before the Mayor and laid 
an information against the father, who was the 
next day brought before Bishop Veysey, who, with 
the Canons of the Cathedral and City Magistrates, 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

30 The Suburbs of Exeter, ^ 

jointly examined him. Every inducement was 
adopted subsequently to effect his reconciliation 
with the Church as then established, but he re- 
mained firm to his reformed convictions, and a writ 
of "de commurendo heretico" having been procured 
from London, Sir Thomas Denys, of Holcombe 
Burnell, then Recorder of the City and High 
Sheriff of the County, ordered the stake to be set 
up on Southemhay. 

But the Mayor and Corporation declined to permit 
the execution within the city limits, and he was 
handed over to the tender mercies of Sir Thomas, 
in virtue of his county ofiice, on the fifteenth of 
January, 1531-32. He was forthwith taken to 
Liverydole and fastened to the stake, whereupon 
two well-known gentlemen of the county — ^Thomas 
Carew, and John Barnehouse — of Staverton — ^urged 
him first with fair words and afterwards with 
threats, to revoke his errors, to call upon our Lady 
and the Saints, and to say " Precor S. Mariam et 
omnes Sanctus Dei." To which he replied, " No, 
no, it is God only on Whose Name we must call, 
and we have no other advocate to Him but Jesus 
Christ, Who died for us." Mr. Barnehouse was so 
enraged at this answer that he took a fiirze-bush 
on a pike, and after setting it on fire thrust it 
into the sufferer's face, saying, " Heretic, pray to 
our Lady, or by God's wounds I will make thee 
do it." But the only reply was, " Alas ! sir, trouble 
me not," and holding up his hands he said meekly, 
**0 Father, pardon them." Then the wood and 
furze were kindled, and blazed up around poor 
Benet, who lifted up his eyes to heaven, and cried 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Heavitree. 3 1 

out in Latin, " O Lord, receive my spirit," and so 
continued his prayers until his life was ended. 

Upon excavating for the new alms-houses at 
Livery Dole in 1851, the iron ring which was wont 
to encircle the victims' bodies, and the chain used 
to fasten them to the stake, were discovered and 
dug up by the workmen. 

Benet is believed to have been the last person 
who suffered at Livery Dole. The place of execu- 
tion was soon afterwards removed to Ringswell. 

On the seventeenth of July, 1452, Henry VI. 
came to this city from Ottery St. Mary, where he 
had passed the previous two nights. He was met 
by the Mayor and Corporation at Clist Honiton, 
but the monastic communities and rural clergy 
assembled outside the Chapel of St. Clarus, Livery 
Dole, and attended his Majesty to the South Gate, 
where they were met by the Priors of St. Nicholas 
and St. John's Hospital, and by the parochial clergy 
of the city. The streets were gaily decorated as 
the procession passed up South Street to the 
Carfoix, and from thence to Broadgate, where the 
King dismounted and proceeded on foot to the 
Cathedral. The service being there concluded, he 
took up his abode at the Episcopal Palace, where 
he was dutifully received and entertained by his 
intimate friend and counsellor. Bishop Lacy. 

Two men, indicted for high treason, were tried 
and condemned on the following day, in the hall of 
the Palace, by his Majesty's Judges, who were then 
holding the Summer Assizes, but upon the inter- 
cession of the Bishop and Chapter, the King 
graciously pardoned them in honour of his visit. 

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32 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Whether the Denys family afterwards felt some 
compunction for the part they had taken in what 
we must all of us now consider the judicial, but 
wicked, murder of Thomas Benet, I cannot say, but 
certain it is that his son, Sir Robert Denys, who 
was also Recorder of Exeter from 1576, states in 
his will, dated the twenty-fifth of July, 1592, and 
proved on the twenty-second of September in the 
same year, that he had designed to set aside a plot 
of ground and erect an alms-house and chapel for 
a certain number of poor people, with weekly 
stipends and certain yearly commodities, "as would 
appear in a devise signed and sealed by him." 

His son. Sir Thomas Denys, is appointed sole 
executor; Greorge Gary (of Cockington), Edward, 
and Walter Denys, are supervisors and overseers. 
The latter are directed to carry out his intentions 
if his son refuses to do so, and he enjoins his said 
son, Sir Thomas, in consideration of the love he 
bore him, and that he had not disinherited him, to 
carry out his intentions in case he did not live to 
finish the work himself. 

The alms-houses for ten poor people, and a 
double one for the chaplain, were completed by the 
son. Sir Thomas Denys, in 1594. Nevertheless, 
the following misleading inscription, which has 
been printed over and over again, was at some 
time placed over the entrance to the quadrangle : — 

'* These Alms Houses were 

founded by Sir Robert Dennis, 

Knight, in March, 1591, 

and finished by Sir Thomas 

Dennis, his brother, in 


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The Parish of Heavitree, 33 

They were rebuilt in 1851, and now stand in line 
to the westward of the chapel. The chaplain's 
house is in the centre; over the gateway are the 
arms and quarterings of Denys ; on the other side 
of the building, those of Rolle, Denys, and Tre- 
fusis. There are gardens in front of the houses, 
and about an acre of garden ground, adjoining, 
also belongs to the charity, which is endowed from 
a rent-charge of ;^45 out of an estate called White- 
church, in the parish of Winterbourne, Dorset. 

The pensioners are appointed by the Hon. Mark 
Rolle, as representative of the founder, and are not 
confined to any particular parish. 

There are frequent and regular services in the 

After the houses were rebuilt, the then chaplain, 
the Rev. Francis Courtenay, for a short time, pre- 
viously to his death, inhabited the centre one. He 
was also incumbent of St. Sidwell's. 

The chaplain's stipend consists of this house, 
about £c^ per annum, and a portion of the acre of 
garden ground. 

With respect to the connection of the present 
patron with the founder's family, George Rolle, of 
Stevenstone (will proved on the ninth of February, 
1552), was married thrice, and had twenty children. 
Among them were John, son and heir; George, 
second son ; and Henry, fourth son. 

John RoUe's grandson. Sir Henry Rolle, Kt., 
married Ann, daughter and co-heir of Sir Thomas 
Denys, who finished the Livery Dole alms-houses 
in 1594. They had issue, Denys Rolle, of Bicton, 
whose daughter Florence brought Bicton in mar- 


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34 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

riage to her husband, John RoUe, of Stevenstone, 
grandson of George, younger brother to her ances- 
tor, John Rolle. 

The fourth brother of the said John Rolle, Henry 
Rolle aforesaid, acquired by marriage the estate 
of Heanton Sachville. His descendant, Robert 
Rolle, of Heanton Sachville, married Lady Ara- 
bella Clinton, daughter of Theophilus, fourth Earl 
of Lincoln and twelfth Baron Clinton. 

The Barony of Clinton, together with Heanton 
Sachville, descended to the family of Treftisis in 
right of descent from Bridget, daughter of the said 
Lady Arabella Rolle. 

John Rolle, of Stevenstone, and his wife Florence 
Rolle, of Bicton, had issue four sons. The eldest 
of these was the grandfather of Henry Rolle, raised 
to the peerage as Baron Rolle in 1748, but who 
died without issue in 1750, when the title became 
extinct; but it was revived in 1796, in the person 
of his nephew, John Rolle, only son of his youngest 
brother, Denys Rolle. 

The late Lord Rolle married in 1822 his kins- 
woman, the Hon. Louisa Treftisis, second daughter 
of Robert, seventeenth Baron Clinton (in succes- 
sion to his relative George, third Earl of Orford, 
who died 1794). 

Lord Rolle died without issue in 1842, when, as 
is generally known, his property was inherited by 
Lady RoUe's nephew, the Hon. Mark Treftisis, who 
succeeded to Stevenstone, and also to Bicton after 
the death of her ladyship. 

Mr. Rolle, who assumed this name in 1852, is, 
it is almost needless to remark, the younger 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 35 

brother of the present Lord Lieutenant of Devon. 

The arms of Dennis, as it is now spelt, are carved 
in stone, and painted in their proper colours, over 
the northern entrance to the alms-houses. The 
tinctures have suffered from exposure, but there is 
a copy of them in the interior of the chapel. They 
appear as follows : — 

I St, Denys — erm. 3 battle axes gu. An old 
heraldic record says : " Post temp. H. 7, Thomas 
Dennys de Holcombe portabat insig^nia dicta cum 
bordure ingra de rubro, quo tempore idem rex a° 5° 
fecit eum militem," which may be thus translated : 
" After the time of Henry 7th Thomas Dennys, of 
Holcombe Burnell, bore the said cirms with a bor- 
dure engrailed gules, at which time, in the 5th year 
of his reign, the said king knighted him." 

2nd, Dabemon — ^Arg. a cross moline Sa. on a 
chief azure 3 mullets or. 

3rd, Gifford — ^brought in by Dabernon, Sa. 3 
fusils in fesse erm. 

4th, Brewer — brought in by Gifford, Gu. 2 bends 
wavy or. 

5th, Bockerell — Sa. Bezant6, 2 stags trippant arg. 

6th, Christenstowe — ^Az. a bend indented erm: 
and or, cotised of the last. 

7th, Gobodesley alias Goldesley — brought in by 
Christenstowe, Sa. a fesse compony or and gu. 
between 3 crosslets of the 2nd. 

8th, Chidenleigh — ^brought in by Goldesley, Arg. 
on a chevron between 3 rooks* heads erased Sa. 3 
acorns or. 

9th, Donne, alias Downe — ^Az. crusily of crosslets, 
an unicorn salient or. 

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36 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

loth, Grodolphin — Gu. an eagle displayed with 2 
necks, between 3 fleur de lis arg. 

On the south side of the building may be seen, 
besides the arms of Dennis, those of RoUe, viz., 
or, on a fesse dancetti6, between 3 billets az., each 
charged with a lion ramp, of the field, as many 
bezants ; and Trefusis, arg. a chevron between 3 
wharrow spindles sa. 

The Manor of Polslo, in this parish, was the 
ancient property of Alric, the Saxon noble, and at 
the Conquest was given to the Canons of St. Mary, 
at Rouen. The Bishop of Coutance did not hold 
** another manor " of the same name, as remarked 
by Dr. Oliver in the " Monasticon of the Diocese," 
but merely a "ferling" of land in this one, as 
shown by reference to both the Exchequer and 
Exeter copies of the Domesday Record ; and this 
furlong in "Polslewe," originally held by Alwin, 
and valued at four shillings, was in 1087 farmed by 
Ansger, under the bishop, at a yearly rental of ten 

Baldwin held the Manor of " Polsleuza " or 
Polslo, as tenant of the Norman chapter, and in 
the eleventh century the whole property passed 
into the hands of Lord William Briwere or Brewer, 
the munificent founder of the Abbeys of Tor and 
Dunkeswell. Here he founded a convent of Bene- 
dictine nuns, in memory of St. Catherine, not long 
previously to the year 1 159. 

Dr. Oliver also says that the patronage of Polslo 
Priory became vested in " William Brewer, Bishop 
of Exeter, grandson of the founder." But the 
founder's sons left no issue, and although one of 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Heavttree. 37 

his daughters, Grace Brewer, certainly married her 
namesake, yet she had no sons, only four daughters. 

The founder is expressly stated by Bishop Brewer 
to have been his uncle, ^^ avunculus noster" a fact 
casually noticed by Dr. Oliver in another of his 
publications, so it is all the more singular that he 
should have made this error in his " Monasticon "; 
but long study, of the venerable doctor's various 
and valuable works, has convinced me that he very 
frequently did not sufficiently inspect the original 
records he fortunately was ever ready to print, and 
which, therefore, in many instances absolutely con- 
tradict the statements he has made in his text. 

The patronage of the priory became vested in 
the See of Exeter, and Bishop Brewer was a bene- 
factor to the then infant establishment. The 
endowment consisted of the Manor of Polslo, 
together with some property in Heavitree, called 
Dyers-lands, Frog Marsh, and Botham, and a 
messuage at Clyst, called Cross Park. The Vicars 
of Heavitree were entitled to an annuity of £2 out 
of the Polslo Manor. 

The net value of the Polslo property was £^1 1 1-^* 
per annum in 1535. 

The Manor of Tudhays, in the Parish of Colyton, 
also called Minchencomb, likewise belonged to the 
priory, and a " charter of privileges " in respect of 
it was granted to the community in 1228, as shown 
by the Rot. Cart., 13th Henry III. 

They had also the Manor of Coxpitt, in the 
Parish of Payhembury, valued at ;^8 15^. \\d. per 
annum, and several scattered tenements and mes- 
suages, in all worth ;^i8 35. The total income 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

38 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

from the lands and houses amounted at the dissolu- 
tion to £,(^2 ts, 1 id. 

They had, moreover, the advowsons of the Rec- 
tories of Budleigh, Aylesbeare, and Holebeton, in 
this diocese, and that of Marston, in Somerset, 
Diocese of Bath and Wells. The last had been 
given them in 1 197. 

They were likewise in receipt of pensions from 
the Dean and Chapter, and from the Rectories of 
Ashton and Ashwater. 

The total value of their lands and possessions at 
the dissolution amounted to the then considerable 
sum of ;£i64 8j. iiJ//., and yet the community; 
which consisted of a prioress, sub-prioress, and 
twelve nuns, was always considered poor. 

It seems, at all events, to have been a sort of 
** haven of rest" for "young ladies of quality" in 
the county, and the fact that the name of the 
daughter of the bailiflF of Polslo is to be found 
amongst the nuns at the dissolution, is alone 
sufficient to show that it was looked upon as a 
very desirable home. 

In addition to the nun referred to, Isabella 
Bennett, there were two Carews, a Kelly, a Tylley 
(Tirrell ?), a " Worthie," a Russell, an Ashley, and 
a Cooke. 

The prioress, Eleanor Sydnam, very shortly after 
her appointment surrendered her house to Henry 
VIII., on the nineteenth of P'ebruary, 1538, and 
received a pension for life of ;^3o. The sub-prioress, 
Anne Carew, had ;^5 6^. 8^., two of the nuns 
;^4 ts. Sd,y and the remainder £4 per annum each. 

Bishop Bartholomew assigned a pension of 

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The Parish of Heavttree. 39 

£^ 6s. Sd. from the episcopal manor at Ashburton 
to this priory. He subsequently gave the "Church 
of Ashburton " {z.e.y the rectorial tithes and patron- 
age of the vicarage), charged with the payment to 
Polslo of this pension, to his chapter, about the 
year 11 80. 

The chapter, in their turn, instead of deducting 
this annual gratuity, £4 6s. 8rf., from their rectorial 
tithes of Ashburton, made it a perpetual charge 
upon the vicarage, to the increased amount of 
£5 iS-y* 4^«> and, although Polslo Priory was entirely 
suppressed in 1538, this sum has been ever since 
claimed and received from Ashburton Vicarage on 
behalf of the patrons, under the name of "an 
annual pension." 

Whilst speaJcing of Ashburton, it may be in- 
teresting to mention that Alice " Worthie," as her 
name is written in the pension list at the Record 
Office, and who was one of the Polslo community at 
the surrender, was the daughter of Otho "Worthe," 
of Compton-Pole, in Marldon, who was grandson 
of Roger, second son of Thomas Worthe, of Worth, 
in Washfield. 

The mother of Alice " Worthie " was Alice 
Mylleton, of Meavy, whose sister, Cecilia Mylleton, 
died Prioress of Polslo in 1530. 

Alice "Worthie" died in June, 1586, and was the 
aunt, six times removed, of the late Vicar of Ash- 
burton, the Rev. Charles Worthy, who died in 1879. 

John Kelly, by his will, dated November, i486, 
gave to Polslo a standing cup of silver, with a gilt 
cover in the shape of a bell, and also a spoon of 
silver marked with the letter K. 

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40 The Suinirbs of Exeter, 

The nuns of this community were allowed a page 
to wait upon them. Each nun was always obliged 
to be accompanied by a "socius" or companion^ 
and if they went into Exeter they had to be at- 
tended by the chaplain, or by a " clerk or esquire 
of good reputation." 

Bishop Stapledon, in exercise of his right to 
choose " confessors " for the convent, appointed, in 
1320, John de Whatell, a Franciscan Friar, together 
with Hugh de la Pole, to that office. 

The nuns were granted a cemetery or burial-place 
for themselves and their community, on the first of 
March, 1159. The interments were limited to this 
sisterhood, to other nuns, their visitors, and to 
priests connected with the priory, who might be 
buried there without the consent of the Canons of 

Thomas Bannaster, chaplain to the priory, desired 
to be buried in the chancel of "St. Katherine of 
Polslowe." His will is dated October, 1534. 

Scipio Squier, the son of the Vicar of Kings- 
nympton, who was noted for his love of heraldry, 
and left some valuable MS. behind him — now, I 
believe, preserved in the library of the Society of 
Antiquaries, as a portion of the bequest of the late 
Dean Milles (of Exeter) — appears to have visited 
the ruins of Polslo in 1607, and to have seen the 
arms of the community still remaining there, viz.y 
Sa. a sword erect between two Catherine wheels 

In February, 1 541, the Crown granted the site of 
the convent to George Carew and Mary his wife, 
but only for their lives, at a rental of £2(^ 35. irf. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Heavitree, 4 1 

per annum, and £,2 135. 4^., the bailiff's salary 
(Greorge Maynwaring, who had succeeded Robert 
Bennett in 1538). 

In 1549 the property was sold to the Earl of 
Warwick. Subsequently it formed a portion of the 
large estates gathered together by Petre of Hayes. 

Very soon afterwards Polslo was acquired by Sir 
Arthur Champemowne, second son of Sir Philip 
Champemowne, of Modbury, who purchased Dar- 
tington Hall, near Totnes, of John Ailworth, of 
London, and included Polslo as part of the con- 

Thomas Ailworth, in 1609, granted a lease of 
Polslo for a hundred and one years to Thomas 
Isaack, and shortly afterwards granted him a second 
lease for a thousand years, to commence on the 
expiration of the former one. 

This Thomas Isaack had no apparent connection, 
as Dr. Oliver and others have supposed, with 
Samuel Isaack, Town Clerk of Exeter, and father of 
Richard, the Chamberlain, and plagiarist of Hoker's 
** History"; nor had either of these Isaacks of Hea- 
vitree any visible connection with the " Buryatt " 
Isaacks. Thomas Isaack, the purchaser of Polslo, 
was the grandson of Isaack of Ottery St. Mary, 
and son of John Isaack, of Heavitree, " aged 86 '^^ 
in 1620. 

His second son, and ultimate heir, Roger Isaack, 
bom 1592, was the father of Col. Sebastian Isaacke, 
of Polslo, born 1615, buried at Heavitree on the 
eighth of November, 1688, and his son, also called 
Sebastian Isaacke, who died in 1700, is credited 
with having been the destroyer of the conventional 

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42 The Suhurbs of Exeter. 

church and other portions of the ancient dwelling-s. 

He was the last of his family who resided there. 
He had no son, and his three daughters married 
Yard, Palmer, and Payne. His father had probably 
suflFered in purse during the Civil wars, for the 
estate was devised to trustees to redeem the mort- 
gage upon it. After considerable litigation, an Act 
of Parliament was procured for its sale, and in 
1726 it came into the hands of the Parkers, of 
Whiteway, whose eventual heiress married the late 
Lord Morley, and it has thus descended to its 
present owners. 

The Prioress of Polslo had all the usual liberties 
within her manor courts, excepting pleas involving 
capital punishment, as shown by the "Hundred 

The ancient building, or rather what remains of 
it, and which is strongly buttressed, is now used as 
a farm-house. Several arches, a well-preserved late 
Perpendicular doorway, together with the corbel of 
an ancient chimney-piece, may be seen without in- 
truding on the occupants. All the rooms still bear 
marks of great antiquity, notably a small upper 
chamber which is supposed to have communicated, 
through a small lobby, with a gallery in the chapel, 
of which latter, however, there are no vestiges. The 
roof of this room was vaulted, and two of the 
corbels are still in situ^ but the decayed ceiling had 
to be removed about thirty years ago. 

There are still the remains of a blocked doorway 
in the recess or lobby referred to, and also of 
another original doorway. Up in the northern 
gable a door still exists, now opening on the air. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Heavitree. 43 

but which, of course, once led to some other por- 
tions of the building since destroyed. There are 
also some traces of an underground passage. 

The Priory of St. James, which the late Col. 
Harding styles an "abbey," was a cell to the 
Abbey of St. Martin' s-in-the-Fields, near Paris. 

As "alien," its revenues were frequently seized 
by the Crown during wars with France, and it was 
finally suppressed altogether in 1444, and its reve- 
nues, then amounting to over ;£5oo per annum> 
were given to Eton College. Consequently there 
are no visible remains of this monastic estab- 
lishment, which was founded between the years 
1 138 and 1 141 by Baldwin de Redvers, second Earl 
of Devon of that name. 

It stood in a marshy situation close to the river, 
on a site still known as the "Abbey Field." A 
stone coffin was discovered there some years ago, 
which is, I believe, the only evidence existing at 
present of the exact position of the priory, of which 
I shall treat further in my notice of the Parish of 
St. Leonard. 

The Parish Church of Heavitree, dedicated to 
St. Michael, stands in a beautiful churchyard com- 
manding extensive views, a little to the south of 
the village. It originally consisted of chancel, 
nave — connected with north and south aisles by an 
arcade of four bays, of Second Pointed date, which 
has been incorporated in the present structure — a 
south porch, and a western tower, containing four 

The church was probably almost entirely rebuilt 
at the commencement of the fourteenth century^ 

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44 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

and considerably altered about a century and a 
half later, as its general style was Perpendicular 
or Third Pointed. It was only eighty-two feet long- 
by forty-three feet broad, and was much too small 
for such an extensive and populous parish. There- 
fore it was destroyed and rebuilt, with the exception 
of the tower, in 1844, when it was extended east- 
ward by the addition of two bays and by a 
prolongation of the old chancel. The latter it is 
now intended to still further enlarge. 

The old tower, which was evidently partially 
constructed of the materials of a previous church, 
was taken down in i %%%y and was then replaced by 
the present solid and beautiful campanile, in com- 
memoration of Hef Majesty's Jubilee. The old 
bells, however, have not been re-hung, and a new 
peal of eight will, it is to be hoped, soon be pro- 
vided either by private generosity or public sub- 

Some fragments of the parclose screen which 
anciently separated the eastern end of the north 
aisle from the chancel, and thus enclosed a chantry 
chapel, are still preserved, and are now utilised as 
a tower screen. The remains show that it was of 
early sixteenth century date, and include ten panels 
of the lower portion and fragments of several lights 
and tracery heads, together with a piece of the 
cornice, rather plainly carved in foliage. 

In the panels are figures of saints, which have 
suffered from well-intended efforts at restoration, 
and it is now impossible to identify several of them 
with any degree of certainty. They appear to be, 
commencing from the south side : — 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Heavitree. 45 

I. — ^Aaron, the rod, budding, in his hand. 

2. — St. Cecilia, V. and M., with a musical instru- 

3. — St. Dunstan, with a long cross and a pair of 
pincers, treading on the devil. 

4. — St. Michael, the patron saint of the church, 
in half armour, a coat with scarlet sleeves, and 
holding a battle-axe. 

5. — ^A female figure, apparently holding three 
nails — St. Helena, the Empress, who at first iden- 
tified the true cross by means of the nails which 
were found near it. 

6. — ^A crowned female figure — the Blessed Virgin, 
crowned Queen of Martyrs. 

7. — St. Genevieve, with a torch (?). 

8. — ^A figure holding a sword in right hand, 
which may be that identified by Dr. Oliver as St. 
Catherine of Alexandria. The letters " N. C." 
[Nomine Catherina ?) are in the upper corner. 

9. — A figure holding aloft a boat-shaped object, 
apparently of basket-work, in left hand a club — 
St. Jude. 

10. — St. Agatha transfixed through the lower 
part of the neck with a sword. 

Dr. Oliver only notices numbers 3, 8, and 10, and 
calls the whole "a part" of the ancient rood screen, 
which it is not, although of similar antiquity. 

In the old church the late Dr. Oliver noticed 
ancient inscriptions for John Ford, no date ; for 
John Vener, 17th July, 1527; for Sir John Legh, 
"Priest,'' and for Hugh Legh, 2nd Aug., 1536; 
also for Alice and Elizabeth, wives of Uphome, of 
the city of Exeter. And he surmises that "John 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

46 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Leigh succeeded Thomas Valans as vicar, although 
his institution is not recorded in the Episcopal 
Registers." I think this a very improbable con- 
jecture. The memorial inscription ran, " Orate pro 
animi Johannis Legh Presbyteri" and was probably- 
some years older than the second Legh inscription, 
which is dated 1536; and Thomas Valans, who 
was admitted on the second of November, 1507, 
to the vacant vicarage of Heavitree, was still in 
possession on the third of November, 1536, as 
shown by Bishop Veysey's return to the Crown, of 
that date. 

When Dr. Oliver examined the old church he 
was able " to trace about eight feet of the wall of 
an earlier structure then blocked up." In this wall 
he also found a blocked-up Early English window, 
which would accord with the first mention of the 
structure in 1152, when it is believed to have been 
granted by Pope Eugenius III. to the Cathedral of 

It was not appropriated to the Dean and Chapter 
until after 1291, as it is not included in the list of 
"peculiars" set down in the "Taxatio" of that 
year, but the first recorded Vicar of "Hev3rtree," 
John de Christenstowe (John of Christow), had 
been admitted by Bishop Bronescombe on the 
sixteenth of April, 1280, 

There are several old gravestones still remaining* 
in the church. One at the eastern end of the nave 
is inscribed to the memory of *' Thomas Gorges of 
Hevitree, Esqr- and Rose his wife. Hee departed 
this life 17th Oct. 1670, and Shee the 14th day of 
April 1 67 1." Some quaint lines, commencing "The 

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The Parish of Heavttree, 47 

louinge turtell," have been printed by Jenkins, so 
I need not repeat them. The rather singularly 
arrailged shield of arms may be blazoned : Per 
fesse ; in chief, per chevron engrailed or and sable, 
on three roundels as many fleur-de-lis all counter- 
charged (Mallock of Cockington). In base, lozengfy 
or and azure, a chevron gules (Gorges of Batcombe, 
new coat). Impaling azure (?) on a chevron between 
three talbots' heads erased argent, a crescent, for 
difference (Alexander). 

Rose Alexander married, first, Roger Mallock, 
of Cockington, who died 1657. On the twenty- 
third of March in the same year Mrs. Rose Mallock, 
then the mother of Rawlin Mallock, of Cockington, 
married Thomas Gorges, of Batcombe, Somerset, 
then the father of Susanna Gorges. 

The said Rawlin Mallock became the husband of 
the said Susannah Gorges, and on another grave- 
stone, nearer the north aisle, may be seen Mallock 
impaling Gorges, with an inscription to " Susanna 
wife of Rawlin Mallacke of Cockington and daugh- 
ter of Thomas Gorges, died 17th April, 1673." 

Rawlin Mallock married, secondly, Elizabeth, 
daughter of Sir John Collins. 

The memorial to Sebastian Isaacke, of "Polsloe,** 
already referred to, has his arms : " Sa. a bend or, 
impaling Barry or and gules" (Berry ?). The name 
of his wife is not given in the Visitation Pedigree, 
and the impaled coat points to the conclusion that 
she was Mary, only daughter of the Vicar of 
Heavitree, John Berry, who was deprived by the 
Puritans, and of whom I have spoken previously. 
He was at one time taken prisoner by the rebels. 

Digitized by 


48 The Stiburbs of Exeter. 

but was rescued by a party of Royalist cavalry. 
His sequestration at Heavitree was much alleviated 
by his successor, William Bankes, who supplanted 
him in the vicarage almost immediately, and Bankes 
was regularly instituted as his successor on the 
twenty-fifth of February, 1645. 

Dr. Berry was the principal founder of the old 
workhouse at the bottom of Paris Street, and his 
statue was erected over the front gate there in 
1 68 1. His picture may still be seen in the board- 
room of the present workhouse, and also those of 
his sons, Arthur Berry, D.D., Canon of Exeter, and 
John Berry, who was a colonel in the Parliamentary 

Dr. John Berry held, in addition to the Vicarage 
of Heavitree, the Rectory of Widworthy and that 
of St. Mary Major s,, Exeter; ,he was also a Pre- 
bendary and a Canon Residentiary of Exeter 

He died on the fifth of July, 1667, aged eighty- 
seven, and was buried in the Cathedral. Colonel 
Berry and his brother John were by their father's 
second wife, Agnes, buried near him in the Cathe- 
dral. His first wife, and the mother of Mrs. Isaack, 
was Elizabeth, daughter of Humphry Moore, of 

In the moulding of one of the arches on the 
south side of the church, which can be inspected 
from the gallery, is an ancient shield of the Cour- 
tenay arms. This shield was originally in the 
spandril of the first arch of the north aisle, and 
gave the idea for the modern abominations which 
now accompany it — Crabbe, Atherley, and Phill- 

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The Parish of Heavitree, 49 

The last two shields, intended to commemorate 
the Vicar and the Bishop, at the period of the re- 
building of the church in 1844, might, of course, 
justly claim a place in the new fabric, but hardly 
in the unfortunate position which was then selected 
for them ; besides which their arms are repeated in 
other portions of the structure. 

The late Mr. Crabbe, well known in his genera- 
tion for his love of antiquities, perhaps suggested 
these anachronisms, and he may also have had 
something to do with the erection of a series of 
modern coats of arms emblazoned on corbel shields, 
and which entirely surround the church, and pro- 
fess to be those of the principal benefactors to the 
present building. Some of these shields were 
rightly assigned to the individuals they comme- 
morate; others have been adopted from chance 
similarity of name, and consequently would be out 
of place anywhere, and are more especially so in a 

The Courtenay arms, exhibited without the label, 
prove almost conclusively that the fabric destroyed 
in 1844 must have been erected between the years 
13 15 and 1335. The Perpendicular windows were, 
of course, inserted at some subsequent date, in the 
fifteenth century, when other alterations must also 
have been effected. 

There are also some tablets, interesting to the 
genealogist, of the Rhodes family, of Bellair, a 
well-known residence in this parish. They will be 
found in the south aisle. 

Dr. John Chardon, admitted Vicar of Heavitree 
on the ninth of August, 157 1, was consecrated 


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50 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Bishop of Down and Connor, in Ireland, in 1596. 
He was succeeded by Francis Goodwin, son of Dr. 
Thomas Goodwin, the venerable Bishop of Bath 
and Wells, with whom Queen Elizabeth had a 
bitter quarrel, because he insisted upon taking a 
third wife when he was over seventy years of age. 

Francis Goodwin, who also held the prebendal 
stall of St. Decuman in his father s cathedral, was 
Canon and Sub-Dean of Exeter, and married a 
daughter of the then Bishop of Exeter, Dr. Wool- 
ton. He succeeded to Heavitree Vicarage on the 
resignation of his predecessor, Dr. Chardon, on the 
sixth of October, 1595. He was the author of the 
learned and useful work, "De Prsesulibus Anglise," 
the lives of English bishops, which has ever since 
been the standard authority on this subject, and 
which was written during the period of his resi- 
dence at Heavitree, which benefice he resigned 
upon his promotion to the See of Llandaff in 1601. 
In 161 7 he was translated to Hereford, and died in 
1633, and was buried in the chancel of Whitbom 
Church, in the neighbourhood of Hereford. 

From the time of Dr. Goodwin, down to 1820, all 
the Vicars of Heavitree belonged to the Chapter of 
Exeter Cathedral, save in one instance, that of the 
Rev. Francis Bradsell, 161 9-1 626. This intimate 
connection with the mother church of the Diocese 
during the last seventy years is too well known to 
merit more than passing reference. 

In 1536 the Vicarage of *' Hevytree," with "the 
Chapels of St. Sidwell and St. David annexed to 
the same vicarage," was valued at £i'] los. 2\d, per 
annum. Thomas Valans was then the vicar. 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 5 1 

The parish registers commence — baptisms, 1653 ; 
burials, 1653 ; marriages, 1653-4. 

The Chapel of St. Anne, situated at the head of 
St. Sidwell Street, had been only recently built in 
141 8. This chapel always belonged to the St. 
Sidwell's fee, and the Manor of St. Sidwell has 
from a very early, but uncertain, period belonged 
to the Dean and Chapter of Exeter. Probably it 
was included in the appropriation of Heavitree 
Church to the See of Exeter by Pope Eugenius, 
already referred to. 

As lords of the manor, and therefore owners of 
the Chapel of St. Anne, the capitular body indicted 
for trespass one William Cudmore in the year 1 698. 
He appears to have broken into the grounds of the 
chapel over the garden wall, and to have thrown 
down the chapel bell. 

In the first and second year of Queen Elizabeth, 
Oliver Manwaring and George Manwaring, his 
brother, restored "the house of St. Anne's Chapel" 
— ^which had originally been an hermitage, or 
dwelling for a single recluse — and made out of 
it an alms-house for poor people, which Ralph 
Duckenfield subsequently endowed with a house 
in Preston Street, the rent of which was to be 
applied to the maintenance of the inmates. This 
endowment has been lost. The rent of a meadow 
bequeathed to this charity by Anne, relict of Dr. 
Francis Debina, and, subsequently, wife of Chris- 
topher Manwaring, was long withheld from it, 
Tjut was ultimately recovered and applied to its 
proper uses by order of the Court of Chancery, in 
.the year 1665. 

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52 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

It is unnecessary to speak at length of the 
Churches of St. Sidwell and St. David, since they 
are both included in the accounts of the City 
Churches to be found in the pages of works which 
treat exclusively of the history of the City of 

St. Sidwell's was rebuilt in 1659, but the ancient 
arcading is a portion of the earlier structure. 

St. David's Church is first mentioned by Bishop 
Marshal between the years 1194 and 1206. It was 
rebuilt in 1541, upon the ground to the north of the 
present entrance to the churchyard from St. David's 
Hill, and just inside the gateway. Of the present 
ugly, uninteresting, and unecclesiastical structure, 
the less said the better. It is to be hoped that it 
will soon be replaced, in its turn, by an edifice 
more in consonance with the prevalent ideas as to 
English church architecture. 

The Chapel of St. Clement's, by the river, stood 
under St. David's Church, and close to the Exe. 
It is mentioned as early as the year 1223, and was 
disused in 1536. The ground on which it stood has 
been long alienated firom Heavitree, and now be- 
longs to the feoffees of St. Petrock's. 

The chapel is said to have been dismantled in 
1572, but portions of it were still standing late in 
the seventeenth century. The long and steep lane 
which led to it from St. David's Hill is known as 
« Chapel Lane." 

Until very recent years the Vicar of Heavitree 
always appointed the perpetual curates of these 
two daughter churches. St. Sidwell's is now styled 
a rectory, and is in the patronage of the Bishop. 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 53 

and the Dean and Chapter alternately. St. David's, 
in the gift of the Dean and Chapter, is a titular 

The large Manor of Duryard is in the latter 
parish, and in Saxon times, under the name of 
** Dochorde," was the property of Alfleta, or Alf- 
hilla, the mother of Earl Morcar. At the period 
of the Domesday Survey it was held, with East 
Wonford, by Walter de Osmundville, as sub-tenant 
to Ruald Adobat. 

It was afterwards in the Chiseldon family, pro- 
bably by purchase from Speke, and passed with the 
co-heirs of John Chiseldon to Bluett and Wadham. 

Roger Bluett, of Holcombe Rogus, and John 
Wadham, of Merifield, co. Somerset, are shown by 
an original lease of property within the manor, 
now in my possession, to have been the joint 
owners of Duryard Manor on the thirteenth of 

July, 1554. 

The property was afterwards acquired by a suc- 
cessful Exeter citizen, Thomas Jefford, who was 
knighted by James II. " for his ingenuity in dyeing 
a piece of cloth scarlet on one side and blue on the 
other, and which he presented to the King." So 
says Jenkins, but Sir Thomas Jefford probably 
received his honours for a very different reason. 
By order of Council, dated Whitehall, twenty- 
eighth November, 1687, John Snell was removed 
from the mayoralty (together with other municipal 
officials), and "our trusty and well-beloved Thomas 
Jefford, Esq." was placed in his room, and the usual 
oath was dispensed with. Immediately afterwards 
Jefford received the honour of knighthood. 

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54 The Stihurbs of Exeter. 

Sir Thomas was evidently of King James's way 
of thinking in the matter of his religious convic- 
tions, and hence his advancement. He built the 
present picturesque mansion known as Great Dur- 
yard, and died in 1703. 

Great Duryard was afterwards the property and 
residence of the Cross family. Francis Cross owned 
it in 1822, and after the death of Mr. Coplestone 
Cross, about the year 1 852, the property was divided, 
laid out for building leases, and is now known as 
the " Duryard Estate." 

Whilst treating of Livery Dole, I have remarked 
that the place of execution for the county was 
removed, in or about the year 1532, to Ringswell. 
This spot was used for the infliction of capital 
punishment for more than two centuries after- 
wards, and was situated at the north-eastern end 
of the Parish of Heavitree. It included a grave- 
yard, which was given by the then Mayor of 
Exeter, John Petre, in 1557, and which was in- 
closed with a wall by Joan, widow of John Tuck- 
field, Mayor in 1549. 

The spot was consecrated on the eighth of March, 
i557> ^y Bishop Turbeville, of Exeter. It was 
allowed to be desecrated and built over in 1827. 
The gallows stood on a waste piece of ground 
between the western hedge of the field, still called 
" The Gallows," and the eastern wall of the burial- 
ground. The boundary hedge was thrown down 
by the owner of the adjoining property, the late 
Lord Graves, who extended his field up to the 
boundary wall ; so that it is now difficult to iden- 
tify the place at all. 

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The Parish of Heaviiree. 55 

The first person who suffered here was John 
Waltheman, for treason, in 1532, he having been 
convicted of prophesying evil of the King. 

Here also were hanged William Horsington, Tho- 
mas Hylleard, Thomas Poulton, Richard Reeves, 
Edward Davy (Davies in the Register), Edward 
Willis (Willies in the Register), and John Giles 
{alias Hobbes in the Register). They were all 
buried in St. Sid well's churchyard on the seventh 
of May, 1655, "having been executed at Heavitree." 
John Haynes had also been left for execution, but 
I have no entry of his burial at St. Sidwell's. 

These unfortunate gentlemen had been con- 
demned at Exeter for participation in the rising 
of 1654-5. They were taken prisoners, or rather 
surrendered under promise of safety, at South 
Molton, having just previously proclaimed Charles 
II. at Salisbury, and insulted the judges there. 

Two of the principal leaders, Capt. Hugh Grove 
and Col. John Penruddock, were sentenced to be 
hanged, but the punishment was afterwards changed 
to decapitation. They were both beheaded in the 
Castle Yard on the sixteenth of May, 1655. Grove 
was buried in "St. Sidweirs Chancell," where a 
brass to his memory may still be seen, in the north 
aisle. On the following day Penruddock was in- 
terred in the Church of St. Laurence, in High 

Richard Wilkins, executed for witchcraft, at 
Ringswell, July, 16 10, was also buried at St. Sid- 

Griifith Ameredith, Sheriff of Exeter, 1555, by 
his will, dated January, 1556, left lands at Sidbury, 

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56 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Sidford, and Salcombe, the rents to be applied in 
buying shrouds for prisoners, either of the City or 
County, who might be condemned to suffer death, 
and also towards the maintenance of the wall of 
the burial-ground, and towards the repair of the 
chapel, if any should be ever built at Ringswell. 
Shrouds were always subsequently provided out of 
this fund, at an expense of three-and-sixpence each, 
until the use of the place for executions was finally 
abandoned, when the money was amalgamated 
with other trust funds under the management of 
the Chamber of Exeter. In 1 704 the rental of the 
property amounted to £,\ i8j. per annum. 

By indenture dated the eleventh of September, 
15 16, John Kelly, Esq., lord of the Manor of Heavi- 
tree, granted to Thomas Valans, Clerk, vicar of the 
parish, and others their heirs, etc., a parcel of land 
sixty-six feet by twenty-six, bounded by the King's 
highway leading from Exeter to Wonford on the 
south, as a site for a house to be called the Church 
House — to pray for the souls of the said John, his 
father, and his ancestors. 

This property fell into the hands of the Crown, 
but was subsequently re-purchased, and it was, by 
deed of the twentieth of January, 1573, conveyed 
by John Lee and another to John Isacke and 
others, under the name of the Parish House, to be 
employed "for the benefit, profit, and commodity" 
of the parishioners of Heavitree. 

Ducke's Alms-Houses were originally founded 
by Richard Ducke, on the twenty-fifth of November, 
1603, for "old or poor people not able to get their 
living by labour, and who had spent most of their 

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The Parish of Heavitree. 57 

lives in husbandry labour within the parish of 
Heavitree"; no child to be admitted to participa- 
tion in the charity, and no single woman under the 
age of fifty to be appointed, and any widow under 
the age of fifty to vacate her rooms within twelve 
days of her husband's death. Provision was also 
made for appointments, on a vacancy, to be made in 
twelve days, failing which the right of presentation 
lapsed from the " heirs of Ducke " to the church- 
wardens and sidesmen, and, failing these, to the 
mayor, bailiffs, and commonalty of Exeter. 

The endowment consisted of a yearly rent-charge 
of twenty-six shillings, issuing out of Clist Marsh, 
in the Parish of Clist St. Mary. Out of this the 
alms-people were only entitled to a quarterly pay- 
ment of one shilling each. 

New trustees were appointed for this charity in 
1655, and again in 1686. 

The churchwardens of Heavitree now fill the 
vacancies in the alms-houses as they occur. 

The trustees of the parish lands pay to the alms- 
people the sum of eight shillings a year amongst 
them, being the interest of five pounds, the gift of 
Walter Skinner, 161 5. 

The rent of the *' parish field," contiguous to the 
highway between Exeter and Topsham, and con- 
taining about one and a half acres of land, is 
applicable to the poor of Ducke's alms-houses. 

The poor are entitled to the interest of fifty 
pounds, under the will of Wenman Nut, dated the 
twenty-fourth of December, 1800. 

Ann Searle, by her will, dated the twenty-ninth 
of December, 18 10, gave all her property to Ann 

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58 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

WoUand, in trust, to pay her debts and funeral 
expenses, and to give the surplus to such poor 
people of the Parish of Heavitree, in such sums 
and at such times, as she, the said Ann WoUand, 
should think fitting. The gross amount of the 
estate amounted to ;^868 17^. 4^. 

The gift of part of this estate, which consisted 
of land in Cornwall and seven deed polls in the 
Honiton Turnpike Trust, which realisedj^599 7^. 4^., 
was void by the Statute of Mortmain. 

The debts, funeral expenses, and other costs in 
connection with winding up the estate, amounted 
to ;£6io 13^. 6^., leaving a balance of ;^258 3 J. \od. 

There was a question as to items in the account 
in respect of payments made to a certain Mrs. 
Mitchell, a friend of the testatrix, who had claimed 
and received in all ;^440 18^. 5^., for an alleged 
debt for maintenance, clothes, etc., supplied to 
deceased, and in respect of dilapidations on pro- 
perty of which she had purchased the reversion in 
deceased's lifetime. Litigation ensued, and the 
trust was, I believe, placed in Chancery. 

The poor have now the interest of about ;^i3i 
18^. \od.y derived from the original bequest. They 
have also the interest of Spicer's gift of ;^427 1 1^. 5^., 
and half of the dividends of Collingwood's gift of 
^217 i^. i\d, ; the total income being over twenty- 
one pounds a year. The income of the charity 
land duly vested in trustees is now about fifty 
pounds a year. 

An addition to Heavitree Churchyard, of the 
land lying on its south side, was consecrated by 
the Bishop of Exeter, August the first, 1891. 

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'T'HE Parish of St. Leonard is situated close to 
-■" the City of Exeter, and adjoins Heavitree. It 
includes only 173 acres of land, and is in the 
Deanery of Christianity, or Exeter. 

Like the Parish of St. Thomas, on the other side 
of the Exe, this parish also takes its name from its 
church, which is dedicated to the memory of a 
saint who was, in early youth, a French nobleman 
and a courtier at the court of King Clovis I. 
Towards the close of his life he devoted himself to 
the cloister, was famed for his deeds of charity, 
founded an abbey, to which he gave his name, at 
Limoges, and died in the odour of sanctity on the 
sixth of November, 559, after which he was duly 

The Church of St. Leonard was originally a 
parochial chapelry, formed for the convenience of 
the inhabitants of that portion of the Manor of 
Exminster situated on the eastern side of the 
River Exe, and was connected with the rest of 
the property by the ford, known as Matford, to 
which I have already alluded. 

The church, or rather chapel, was evidently built 
either by Richard de Redvers, first Earl of Devon 

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6o The Suburbs of Exeter. 

of his name, or by Baldwin, the second earl, his 
son, most probably by the latter. 

Baldwin de Redvers succeeded to the earldom 
of Devon in 1107, and probably between the years 
1 138 and 1 141, certainly before 1143, he founded 
the Priory of St. James, as previously stated. The 
site of this priory was nearly on the banks of the 
river, close to the ford over it, and separated only 
by one field or close of land from the south-eastern 
extremity of the Parish of St. Leonard. 

That St. Leonard was a parish at the time the 
priory was founded is sufficiently evident from the 
first of the foundation deeds of the latter, of which 
there are three extant. In this deed, Baldwin, the 
earl, states that he has founded the monastery of 
St. James " for the safety of his soul, and for those 
of his sons and daughters, his parents, and all his 
friends " — through the hand of Robert, Bishop of 
Exeter, on the day that he dedicated the cemetery 
of the monastery. Bishop Robert Chichester occu- 
pied the See of Exeter from 1138, and Robert, 
Abbot of Tavistock, who witnesses one of the 
three deeds, died in 1145, which is ample evidence 
in itself as to the date of St. James's Priory. 

Baldwin endows the priory with certain lands, 
"with the same liberty and fi-ee customs with 
which I held and hold my Manor of Exeministre "; 
and he adds, by the gift, and at the request of 
Avis of St. Leonard's, I have confirmed to them 
"two acres of land in which their mill leat has 
been made, and the use of the water flowing over 
the land of Avis herself." 

To this gift, Stephen of St. Leonard's, son of 

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The Parish of St. Leonard, 6i 

the said Avis, added six acres more, lying* between 
the mill leat and the King's highway—the Topsham 
Road — ^for the safety of his soul, and that of his 
wife Christine, of his mother Avis, his father Nigel, 
and Adam, his son and heir. He, with his said 
wife Christine, and son and heir Adam, confirmed 
this gift by placing it — that is, the "writing" of it 
— on St. James's altar, and upon the Book of the 
Holy Evangelists. Witness, "Augustine," who 
was third Prior of St. James's not long after 1157. 

The mention of "Avis of St. Leonard's," by the 
Earl of Devon, proves that the latter had been 
formed into a distinct parish previously to the 
establishment of St. James's Priory. The deed 
of Baldwin was witnessed by his sons Henry and 
William, and was executed with the consent of his 
eldest son Richard. 

The younger son, William, has always hitherto 
been identified with William de Vernon, sixth Earl 
of Devon, whose daughter Mary married Robert 
Courtenay — a manifest anachronism, occasioned 
by similarity of name, and founded probably upon 
the known fact that "William de Vernon" was 
a younger son of " Baldwin the Earl." But Bald- 
win was succeeded by his eldest son, Richard, as 
third earl, whose son Baldwin, fourth earl, by 
Alice, daughter and heir of Ralph de Dol, of Berry, 
usually asserted to have had no issue, had two 
sons — Richard, fifth earl, who died childless, and 
was succeeded by his brother William de Vernon, 
as sixth earl. 

Had the latter been "son of Baldwin, second 
Earl," as hitherto universally stated, then he must 

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62 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

have married a lady who lived two generations 
after him — Mabel de Mellent — and their daughter 
Mary must have flourished two generations pre- 
viously to her husband, Robert Courtenay; besides 
which, the Courtenays would have had no claim to 
the "blue lion on a golden field" which has always 
been quartered by them in right of Dol. 

Through the marriage of Mary de Red vers, 
daughter of William de Vernon, sixth earl, with 
Robert Courtenay, the whole of the Redvers pro- 
perty eventually came into the hands of the latter 
family, after the death of Isabella de Fortibus in 
1 191, and they thus became patrons of St. James's 
Priory and had also the advowson and right of 
presentation to the Church of St. Leonard's, as 
representatives of the original founder, and their 
right to this patronage was fully established on the 
eleventh of June, 1348, upon an enquiry directed 
by Bishop Grandisson ; consequently Hugh de 
Courtenay, Earl of Devon, presented Walter Power 
to St. Leonard's Rectory on the second of July in 
that year. 

After this, save when the Crown interfered during- 
minority of the true patron, the Courtenays con- 
tinued to present until the property of the earldom 
became divided, through the death of Edward, 
Earl of Devon, at Padua in 1556. 

The Crown presented the following yeaf, then 
the advowson of St. Leonard's was sold to George 
Hull, who presented in 1596, after which the Duckes 
acquired the patronage. Nicholas Ducke presented 
in 1671 ; Elizabeth Ducke, widow, in 1708. 

John Baring, of Larkbeare, purchased the ad- 

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The Parish of St, Leonard. 63 

vowson of the assignees of Andrew Lavington, 
who had acquired it from Ducke in July, 1727, for 
£<^o. It had previously changed hands for ^30, 
and in 1825 it was purchased by Samuel Parr, of 
Dawlish, for ^3,500. 

St. Leonard's was one of the twenty-eight 
chapels to which Peter de Palema, by his will 
dated A.D. 1200, bequeathed an annuity of a penny 
a year. In the "Taxatio" of Pope Nicholas, 1291, 
its poverty is referred to, and its value is set down 
at 6j. %d, per annum. 

In 1536, Charles Pytford, who had been presented 
in 1523, by Henry Courtenay, Earl of Devon and 
Marquess of Exeter, beheaded by Henry VIII., 
was still the Rector, and his preferment was valued 
at;^4 19J. 5^. 

In 1742 an estate in the parish of Crediton, of 
about twenty-five acres, was bought of the Rev. 
John Carwithen for ;^4i5, to augment the living. 
Of the purchase money, ;^200 was subscribed in 
the parish and neighbourhood, ;^200 came from 
the Governors of Queen Anne's Bounty, and the 
remainder was given by the then Rector, the Rev. 
John Weston, who had already subscribed ;^ 1 7 15^. 
to the general fund. 

The tithe-rent charge, as commuted, now stands 
at ;^i64 a year, and there are two and a quarter 
acres of glebe. £^ i a year has been added to the 
Rectory "from other sources," according to the 
Diocesan Calendar. 

The old church of St. Leonard's, which was 
taken down in 1831, consisted of chancel and nave, 
and, originally, of a western tower, as shown by 

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64 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

the remains of the newel staircase which anciently- 
led to it. The drawings of it, which have been 
preserved, show that it retained many Early English 
characteristics, and it had an open and high-pitched 
roof until 1732. 

It had evidently been very much altered by the 
introduction of larger windows, during the thir- 
teenth century, and is said to have been rebuilt in 
the fifteenth, when, however, it can only have been 
extensively repaired : probably the tower was then 
removed, but the window, probably re-inserted in 
the new west wall, was, apparently, of about the 
middle of the thirteenth century, and merely con- 
sisted of two lights divided by a single muUion 
without tracery of any kind. There was a south. 
Perpendicular doorway, and the chancel was sup- 
ported by plain Early English buttresses. 

This interesting old edifice, which had been much 
knocked about and modernised fi-om time to time, 
was altogether removed at the period mentioned 
above, in virtue of a faculty dated the twenty-eighth 
of April, 1 83 1, and a tasteless and incongruous 
modern structure was then erected which has hap- 
pily perished in its turn, and the present handsome 
church succeeded it in 1883. The tower, with its 
beautiful spire, is a still later addition. 

An ancient house, of which there are no existing 
remains, but which is shown by Bishop Stafford's 
Register to have stood in the " Churchyard of St. 
Leonard's," was the abode of a recluse or anchorite. 
In this hermitage a certain woman called " Alice " 
obtained permission to reside, on the eighteenth of 
May, 1397. Again, in 1447, it became the retreat 

Digitized by 


The Parish of St, Leonard. 65 

and refuge of a canoness of the Augustine Priory 
of Kildare, called Christina Holby, Kildare Priory 
having been then lately destroyed by the wild Irish, 
" through the misfortune of war/' 

These recluses are occasionally mentioned in old 
wills preserved at Exeter, amongst the Episcopal 

Larkbeare, in this parish, which stood at the 
bottom of Holloway Street, and on the right-hand 
side of the road going towards Exeter, has been 
recently removed. It was a very ancient and in- 
teresting residence, but it must not be confounded, 
as it has been, with the Manor of "Laurochesbeare" 
mentioned in Domesday, and which is situated in 
the Parish of Tallaton. 

Larkbeare in St. Leonard's, sometimes written 
Leverbeare, Leverkebere, and Lavrockbeare, may 
have derived its name from some early owner who 
had migrated from the Tallaton manor ; it is men- 
tioned in a document amongst the municipal records 
as early as the first half of the thirteenth century, 
when it was "the land of Richard de Leverbeare," 
from whom it probably descended to Adam de 
Leverkbere, whose name occurs a few years later 
as a benefactor to the " Maudlyn Hospital." 

John de Lerkebeare is mentioned in the will of 
Peter Sott, his kinsman, dated 1327. 

From the Larkbeares this property passed to the 
Bowdens, since Nicholas Bowden had a license 
from Bishop Stafford in 141 6 to have Divine offices 
performed within his mansion of Lerkebeare, within 
the Parish of St. Leonard's. 

The Hull family probably succeeded the Bowdens, 

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66 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

and held the property for many descents. John 
Hull of Larkbeare was Recorder of Exeter, with a 
salary of three pounds per annum, from 1379-1404. 
The arms of his descendant, Henry Hull of Lark- 
beare, Mayor of Exeter 1605, are tricked in a MS. 
belonging to the Chapter of Exeter, No. 3532 : 
"Sable, a chevron between three talbots' heads 
erased argent." 

The Heralds' Visitation of 1564 gives six descents 
of this family, and a coat of arms with six quarter- 
ings, viz,^ Marney, Talbott of Exeter, Halwell, and 
D'Albertona (both brought in by Talbott), St. Clere, 
and CoUyn of Cornwall. 

Matthew Hull of Larkbeare, aged 26 in 1550, was 
the last of his name at Larkbeare. His son George 
sold the property to Sir Nicholas Smith, and mi- 
grrated to Dorsetshire, having married Margaret, 
daughter of Walter Ralegh of Fardel, and widow 
of his neighbour Laurence Radford. 

The Hulls are now extinct in the male line. 
Katherine, aunt of George Hull, married Thomas 
Pomfrett of Exeter, and had three sons and a 

Sir Nicholas Smith was the son and heir of Sir 
George Smith, of Madford House, who has been 
already mentioned in connection with Heavitree. 
Larkbeare passed into the hands of the Eastchurch 
family, some time after the death of the son of Sir 
Nicholas Smith. It was afterwards in the Laving- 
tons, and Andrew Lavington owned it in 17 14. 
Two years afterwards he advertised a portion of 
the old house to be let unftirnished. He ulti- 
mately became bankrupt, and then the property 

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The Parish of St. Leonard. 67 

was sold to John Baring, of Palace Street, in 1737. 

John Baring, and his brother Francis, were the 
two sons of Dr. Franz Baring, the Lutheran minister 
at Bremen. John Baring married Miss Vowler, the 
daughter of an opulent Exeter grocer, and had five 
sons and a daughter. 

Two of their sons, John and Francis Baring, laid 
the foundation of the wonderful fortunes of the 
Baring family, when, in extension of the woollen 
manufactory at Larkbeare, they started a business 
in London as wool-importers, in connection with 
the Exeter business. 

Francis Baring, as is tolerably well known, be- 
came a baronet, and was the ancestor of the Baring 
baronets and of the Baring peers. 

His brother John soon returned to Exeter, where 
he acquired a good deal of property at Heavitree, 
as already noticed, and he was also the owner of 
the greater portion of St. Leonard's. He estab- 
lished a firm known as the Pljrmouth Bank, and, 
later on, the Devonshire Bank, which suspended 
payment in 1820, four years after his death. He 
married Anne, daughter of Francis Parker and 
cousin of Lord Boringdon, but both his sons died 
unmarried. His brother Charles was the ancestor 
of the Baring-Goulds. 

Three years before the failure of the bank. Sir 
Thomas Baring bought the St. Leonard's and 
Heavitree property from his cousin John, who 
probably foresaw the clouds which were then 
lowering over the fortunes of the elder branch of 
the house of Baring, and thus endeavoured to 
provide for them. 

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68 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Lower Larkbeare, as it is now called, was orig-i- 
nally rented from the Barings by Charles Bowring-, 
who carried on there the business of a master 
tucker, and in 1822 he purchased the property from 
Sir Thomas Baring. His son, the late Sir John 
Bowring, was born in the old house at Larkbeare 
in 1792. The present mansion, now used as the 
Judges' lodgings, is of course a very modem erec- 

Mount Radford House, which now gives its 
name to a very considerable suburban district, 
stands on the high ground opposite St. Leonard's 

In the time of Edward III. the place was known 
as " St. Leonard's Mount," and the level grounds 
stretching away from the house towards Topsham 
and Heavitree were called " St. Leonard's Down." 

In 1773 there was not a single dwelling between 
Mount Radford House and the residence now 
known as Penrose Villa, nor south-west of the 
latter to Madford House, which is just within the 
limits of the Parish of Heavitree. 

The permanent gallows, where the City prisoners 
were wont to be executed, stood on the left side of 
Magdalen Road, a little above the present turning- 
to College Road, and is the only object marked 
on the old map of the property, of the date referred 

Three pieces of cannon were placed in position 
on Mount Radford for the bombardment of Exeter^ 
when Sir Thomas Fairfax invested the City in 1643. 

Mount Radford House was originally built by 
Laurence Radford, whose name is not included in 

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The Parish of St, Leonard, 69 

the Heralds' Visitation of 1620, but who was, 
without any manner of doubt, a younger son of 
the Radfords of Rockbeare, since he is entered in 
the Inner Temple lists as " Laurence Radford of 

Having purchased St. Leonard's Mount of the 
Hulls, he built thereon a " fayre house and called 
it Mount Radford," as Sir "William Pole tells us, 
and to this '* fayre house," his son Arthur Radford 
succeeded in 1595, his mother having been Marga- 
ret, sister of the great Sir Walter Ralegh, who 
became, as I have already noticed, the second wife 
of her neighbour's son, George Hull. 

Arthur Radford sold his property to the Clerk of 
the Assizes, Edward Hancock, of Combmartin, who 
married Dorothy, daughter of Amyas Bampfylde, 
of Poltimore, and left her the property. 

She married secondly Sir John Doddridge, the 
Judge, who resided a great deal at Mount Radford 
until his wife died, in 1614, when her life-interest 
in Mount Radford expired, and the place had to be 
sold. Lady Doddridge and her husband are both 
buried in Exeter Cathedral, under a grand monu- 
ment in one of the chantries on the north side of 
the Lady Chapel. The Judge died in Surrey in 

Nicholas Duck, Recorder of Exeter, purchased 
Mount Radford in 1614. Although he matriculated 
at Exeter College, Oxford, as " the son of a ple- 
beian," he carefully entered the name of the said 
"plebeian," Richard Duck of Heavitree, and of 
Philip Duck, father of the said Richard, in the 
Heralds' Visitation of 1620. 

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70 The Svhurhs of Exeter. 

His brother, Arthur Duck, bom in 1580 at Heavi- 
tree, was " Fellow of All Souls," Chancellor of the 
Dioceses of London and of Bath and Wells, and 
M.P. for Minehead. He also lent King Charles I. 
;£6,ooo to carry on the "War. 

The portrait of that very worthy man, Nicholas 
Duck, of Mount Radford, may still be seen in the 
Exeter Guildhall. He died in 1628, and was suc- 
ceeded by his son Richard, who, living as he did in 
the suburbs of Exeter, must have had rather a bad 
time of it during the Rebellion, for his house and 
grounds appear usually to have been occupied, for 
offensive purposes, by one party or the other. 

Richard Duck, by the way, matriculated at 
Wadham College as "the son of an esquire." 
Nicholas Duck, before he purchased Mount Rad- 
ford, probably resided in the Parish of St. Mary 
Arches, since Richard, his son, was baptised there 
on the fifth of May, 1603. 

The latter's grandson, Richard Duck, died in 
1695 without issue. His wife Elizabeth, daughter 
and co-heir of John Acland, Mayor of Exeter, sur- 
vived until 1722-3, and she presented to the Rectory 
of St. Leonard's in 1708. 

After her death the house at Mount Radford was 
tenanted by an Exeter merchant called Hansford. 
It was subsequently purchased by an eminent 
Quaker, and merchant, John Colsworthy, who 
became bankrupt. 

In 1755 the property passed into the hands of 
John Baring for the sum of ;^ 2, 100. The property 
now built over, and known as Mount Radford, was 
then turned into a park, and a carriage-drive was 

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The Parish of St. Leonard, 7 1 

made through it, which emerged into the Magdalen 
Road just above the Barnfield. 

For a short time subsequently to the death of 
John Baring, the second, in 1816, Mount Radford 
House was let furnished. After Sir Thomas Baring 
became the owner, the furniture was sold by auc- 
tion in 1825; and in 1832, the Hoopers, who were 
builders, of Exeter, and others, purchased the park 
for the utilisation of their bricks and mortar, and 
thence originated the long terraces of attractive 
and comfortable suburban residences which we see 

Mount Radford House was purchased by a pro- 
prietary college company in 1826, but the scheme 
did not answer. Ultimately it became a private 
school, which was conducted for many years suc- 
cessfully by the late Rev. R. Roper, who was 
succeeded by his son-in-law, the Rev. J. Ingle. 

Shorn of much of its ancient fame, the old 
dwelling is now once again a private residence, 
and the grounds around it are still considerable 
and attractive. 

I have previously had occasion to remark else- 
where that "the custom of giving names to wells 
and fountains is of the most remote antiquity." In 
pre-Reformation times, if a well had a remarkable 
situation, if its waters were bright and clear, or if 
it was considered to possess a medicinal quality, 
then some pious or charitable individual invariably 
went to the expense of enclosing the spring, which 
thereafter was known by the benefactor's name, or, 
more usually, by the appellation of some saint to 
whom the completed work had been dedicated. 

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72 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

An ancient well of this kind exists on the right- 
hand side of the Wonford Lane, just beyond the 
turning from the Topsham Road, and is within the 
Parish of St. Leonard. It is known as " Parker's 
Well,'' and its waters have always been celebrated 
as a certain cure for persons afflicted with sore 

The residence above it, long known as Parker's 
Well House, viras probably erected by Thomas 
" CoUyns," fourth in descent from John Collings, a 
younger son, by his second marriage with Alice 
Eveleigh, of Thomas Collings, of Ottery St. Mary, 
whose pedigree is recorded in the Devonshire Visi- 
tation of 1620. 

Thomas "CoUyns,*' of Parker s Well House, was 
buried at St. Leonard's on the tenth of March, 1752. 
His son, Edward CoUyns, of Parker's Well, sur- 
vived until 1774. 

Parker's Well is chiefly famous as having been 
the property and residence of the first Lord GiiFord, 
who was the youngest son of an Exeter linen- 
draper, a Presbyterian, by his second wife, Dorothy 

Robert Gifford, as an articled clerk in the office 
of Mr. John Jones, an Exeter solicitor, from 1 795, 
attracted the notice of Mr. John Baring, who be- 
friended him, with the result that he was entered 
as a student at the Middle Temple in the first 
year of this century, and was called to the bar in 

As Attorney-General, he was leader of the pro- 
secution in the disgraceful trial of Queen Caroline 
for alleged adultery, and for his services on 

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The Parish of SL Leonard. 73 

that occasion was raised to the peerage as Baron 
GifFord, of Parker's Well, in the Parish of St. 
Leonard, having previously been elevated to the 
bench as Chief Justice of the Common Pleas. 

He at length became Master of the Rolls, and 
died at the early age of forty-seven, having married 
a daughter of the Rev. Edward Drewe, Vicar of 
Broadhembury, and thus allied himself with one of 
our county families. 

Lady GifFord, whose husband had died at Dover, 
rather unex;pectedly, continued to reside at Parker's 
Well House until her own death in 1828, when it 
became the residence of Mr. Wearman GifFord, the 
deceased peer's brother. 

The present Lord GifFord, who is the grandson 
of the first lord, was born in 1849, served for some 
time in the army, with a commission in the 5th 
Regiment, and earned the Victoria Cross for Tiis 
conspicuous gallantry in the Ashantee Campaign. 

The earlier registers of the Parish of St. Leonard 
have been lost ; those that remain commence — 
baptisms, 1713 ; marriages, 1708; burials, 17 10. 
They are none of them originals. 

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TpHp fable as to the " Imperial Origin," Greek or 
"*- Latin, of the Devonshire house of Courtenay, 
cannot even claim a traditional foundation, but it 
has been so frequently asserted of late years, that 
it has almost assumed the character of an estab- 
lished fact. 

The monks of Ford Abbey have stated in their 
chartulary, which was compiled about the middle 
of the fourteenth century, and which has been 
preserved, that Reginald of Courtenay, the first of 
the name in England, was the "son of Prince 
Florus," and therefore the grandson of Louis le 
Gros, King of France from ii 08-1137. But this 
descent has been long repudiated even by the 
Courtenays themselves. 

It is a well-known fact, however, that Prince 
Peter of France, a brother of the said Prince 
Florus, married a certain Elizabeth Courtenay, 
and assumed his wife's name, and that their son, 
Peter Courtenay, took to wife Yolande, sister of 
Baldwin and Henry, Counts of Flanders, and the 
first Latin Emperors of Constantinople. 

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The Earldom of Devon, 75 

Henry died at Thessalonica, in 12 17, when his 
race became extinct in the male line, and therefore 
his brother-in-law, Peter Courtenay, together with 
his wife the Princess Yolande, were invited to 
ascend the vacant throne. 

Two of their sons, Robert and Baldwin Courtenay, 
subsequently reigned at Constantinople, from 1221 
until the latter was ejected by Michael PalaBologus 
in the year 1261. But these circumstances do not 
make our Devonshire Courtenays the descendants 
either of the " Latin Emperors " of their name, or 
of their deadly enemy, the Grreek "Emperor Palae- 
ologiis," as recently asserted more than once by 
writers who can have had but scant knowledge of 
mediaeval history. 

The fabulous descent from Florus, has been most 
unfortunately perpetuated by Camden and Dugdale, 
whilst the modern pedigrees of Courtenay probably 
owe most of their discrepancies, and manifest in- 
accuracies, to the statements and suggestions of 
Ezra Cleveland, who had been tutor to Sir "William 
Courtenay, of Powderham, and whose genealogical 
history of the family consequently appeared with 
some show of authority in 1735 ; since which, the 
old errors, usually associated with fresh ones, have 
been repeated over and over again in local histories 
and periodicals, and even in the columns of daily 
papers. So that, with but passing reference to 
other authors, it will be better to proceed here 
with what is actually known as to the origin of the 
Courtenays of Devonshire, and to deduce from this 
knowledge the possible connection between the 
latter family and the Emperors of Constantinople. 

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76 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

The first Courtenay on record was "Atho," a 
French Knight, universally admitted to have been 
of nameless origin, who built a castle at Courtenay, 
a small town in the Gatenois, sixty miles from 
Paris, early in the eleventh century, and took his 
name from his residence. His elder grandson, 
Milo, was certainly Lord of Courtenay Castle, 
whilst Josceline, the first Count of Edessa, whose 
territory extended on both sides of the Euphrates 
river, was, as certainly, a younger brother of the 
said Milo. 

In the year 1152, one Reginald de Courtenay, a 
widower with two adult sons, came to this country 
in the train of Queen Eleanor, and he was the 
indisputable ancestor of the English Courtenays. 

The usually accepted accounts as to the origin 
and history of this Reginald de Courtenay are 
merely traditional. He is said " to have been the 
son of the aforesaid Milo, grandson of Atho, to 
have married at an early age, Matilda, the sister of 
Guy de Donjon, and by her to have been the father 
of Elizabeth de Courtenay, the wife of Prince Peter 
of France, and therefore the grandfather of the first, 
Courtenay, Emperor of Constantinople.*' He is. also 
said "to have given his said daughter the Castle of 
Courtenay, and the rest of his French possessions, 
as a marriage portion." 

Such being the case, he must have disinherited 
his two sons in order to provide for his daughter ; 
and, even then, it was not from these sons, but from 
the daughter, who remained in France, that the 
Courtenays of Constantinople descended. 

And it must not be forgotten, that Eleanor of 

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The Earldoni of Devon. 77 

Guienne, then the wife of Henry of Anjou, subse- 
quently our Henry II., was the divorced and dis- 
graced wife of Louis VII. of France, the eldest 
brother of Prince Peter. Is it therefore at all 
probable that the near relatives of the latter could 
have been thus associated with her ? 

Still, it is unnecessary to question the tradition 
more closely, since it only leads to the known facts 
—that one Reginald de Courtenay, a widower, 
accompanied by two sons, came to England, to 
seek his fortune, nearly a century after this country 
had been settled by the Normans, and that they 
were of sufficient importance, at all events, to at 
once secure royal protection and patronage, as all 
three of them contracted advantageous matrimonial 
alliances immediately after the accession of Henry 
II., as shown by the Exchequer Rolls, and other 
contemporary documents, by means of which the 
Courtenay history from that period has been 
ascertained step by step. 

Robert de Courtenay, younger son of Reginald, 
who has been usually confounded with his nephew 
of the same name, married Alice de Romele, 
daughter of the north country lord of Skipton, 
was Sheriff of Cumberland, and in the year 1209, 
the said Alice, as his widow, paid a fine to the 
Crown for recovery of her dowry. 

Reginald and his elder son William, married 
two half-sisters, who were wards of the Crown, and 
great Devonshire heiresses, although in recent 
pedigrees of the family each has been given the 
wife who properly belonged to the other. 

Reginald, whose second wife's name is still 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

78 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

preserved in an existing deed, married Matilda, 
younger daughter of Maud, Baroness of Okehamp- 
ton in her own right, by her second marriage with 
Robert Fitz-Ede, a natural son of King Henry I. 

William de Courtenay, as shown by the Ex- 
chequer Rolls, became the husband of his step- 
mother's elder half-sister. Avis, whose father, 
Robert D'Aincourt, had been the first husband of 
the Baroness of Okehampton. 

William de Courtenay and Avis his wife had 
issue Robert, their son and heir, who has been 
usually confounded with his uncle Robert, as 
stated above. 

Avis de Courtenay, being then " widow " of 
William de Courtenay, died in the year 1209, on 
the thirty-first of July, and at her death, Robert de 
Courtenay, her son, inherited the Barony of Oke- 
hampton. She had previously succeeded to her 
half-sister's moiety of the said barony, whose 
husband, Reginald de Courtenay, grandfather of 
the said Robert, had died on the twenty-seventh of 
September, 1194, and thus she was enabled to 
leave the whole barony to her said son. 

Robert at once executed a deed in favour of the 
Okehampton burgesses, which ig still extant, and 
by which their privileges are duly confirmed as 
they had them in the time of "Richard son of 
Baldwin" (De Brion), "Robert son of Reginald" 
(D'Aincourt), "and Maude de Abrincis his wife," 
and " Avis of Courtenay my mother." 

This deed is witnessed by his uncle, Robert de 
Courtenay, Sheriff of Cumberland, who must have 
died very soon after. 

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The Earldom of Devon. 79 

One great point in previous efforts to establish 
the connection between the French and English 
Courtenays has always been the similarity of their 
armorial bearings, which were apparently, but not 
really, identical. 

The former commemorated in their arms the 
current money of old Byzantium (Constantinople), 
for very obvious reasons, and bore "Gules, 3 
bezants"; whilst the English family have invari- 
ably borne " Or, 3 torteaux," a coat which will be 
shown to have been derived at a much later date 
from Redvers, and which is exactly the reverse of 
the Byzantine coat, and constitutes a perfectly 
different bearing, although when carved in stone 
and uncoloured it would appear to be precisely 

The Earldom of Devon was given by Henry I., 
immediately after his accession to the throne, to his 
" trusty friend and counsellor," Richard Fitz- 
Gilbert, brother to that Baldwin de Brion, who had 
married Albreda, niece of William the Conqueror, 
and had received from his successful master the 
rich Barony of Okehampton, and the hereditary 
shrievalty of Devon. 

This Baldwin was the great great grandfather 
of Avis and Maude, ultimately his co-heirs, and 
the respective wives of William and Reginald 

Richard Fitz-Gilbert and his brother Baldwin, 
who were both at Hastings, were the sons of 
Gilbert, Earl of Brion, in Normandy, whose father, 
Godfrey, Earl of Owe, was an illegitimate son of 
Richard Le Bon, Duke of Normandy, and first 

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8o The Suburbs of Exeter, 

cousin of Richard Fitz-Gilbert, son of Gilbert, "" 

officiary Earl of Owe, a natural son of the first 
duke, Richard, " Sans Peur," and this latter 
Richard Fitz-Gilbert was the ancestor of the House 
of Clare. 

Richard Fitz-Gilbert, first Earl of Devon, who 
has been more than once previously confounded 
with his father's kinsman, Richard Fitz-Gilbert of 
Clare, was one of the earliest Norman settlers in 
this country, and although he did not receive at 
first such a large share of the plundered property 
of the Saxons, as fell to the lot of his brother 
Baldwin de Brion, yet he held six manors, as 
sub-tenant to the latter, five under the Earl of \ 
Mortaigne, uterine brother to King William ; two, ■ 

under William the Porter and Ralph de Pomeroy, 
respectively, besides the Manor of Levaton in that 
part of the parish of Ipplepen (now Woodland), 
which was his own demesne in the year 1087. 

He assumed the name of Richard de Ripariis, 
afterwards anglicized into Redvers, or less com- 
monly, Rivers, and, as I have said, King Henry I. 
created him Earl of Devon, conferred upon him the 
lordship of Tiverton, which continued to be the 
principal seat of his descendants until the reign of 
Queen Mary, and also gave him the great barony 
of Plympton. 

He married Adeliza or Alice, daughter and co- 
heir of William Fitz-Osborn, Earl of Hereford, 
and through this marriage he acquired the lord- 
ship of the Isle of Wight, and his successors were 
known as ** Earls of Devon and Lords of the Isle " 
until the Countess Isabella sold the latter lordship 

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The Earldoni of Devon, 8i 

to the Crown, shortly before her death in 1293. 

Richard, first Earl of Devon, died in the year 
1 107 ; he was succeeded by his eldest son Baldwin 
" de Redvers," as second earl. 

The latter, whose wife was also called Adeliza or 
Alice, founded several monasteries, notably those 
of Quarr, in the Isle of Wight, and the Priory of 
St. James, at Exeter. To the latter he gave, with 
other property, the Manor of Cotleigh, which his 
father had held under the Earl of Mortaigne at the 
time of the Domesday Survey. 

He had several children, and one of them, a 
daughter Maud, married Ralph de Avenel, whose 
claim to the Barony of Okehampton was upset 
upon a writ of ejectment. 

This Ralph de Avenel, who has been hitherto 
given a perfectly erroneous descent, was the son 
of William Fitz-Baldwin, son of Baldwin de Brion. 
The latter had three sons and two daughters ; but 
of these, one son and two daughters only, proved 
to have a right to the Barony of Okehampton, and 
it is therefore more than probable that the Con- 
queror settled that property upon his niece Albreda 
and her heirs, and that William Fitz-Baldwin, the 
founder of Cowick Priory, and his brother Robert 
Fitz-Baldwin, Governor of Brion, in Normandy, 
were the sons of Baldwin de Brion, by a second 
miarriage, which he has been always said to have 
contracted, although his second wife's name is still 
a mystery. 

One of the younger sons of Baldwin de Redvers, 
second Earl of Devon, was known as "William 
de Vernon," so called because he was born at 


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82 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Vernon Castle, in Normandy, the seat of his grand- 
father, prior to his arrival in England, and who 
had died in Jioy. He witnesses, as " William son 
of the Earl," his father s deeds in favour of St. 
James' Priory as early as 1143, and has been in- 
variably confounded with " William de Vernon/' 
sixth Earl of Devon, who died in 12 17, and 
whose daughter Mary, married Robert Courtenay. 
This is manifestly absurd for several reasons, chief 
amongst them, that the first William de Vernon 
lived three generations previously to the said 
Robert Courtenay, and it is hardly likely that the 
latter took to wife a lady who was contemporary 
with his grandmother, and if, for any special 
reasons, he had been induced to do so, he would 
have naturally expected a speedy release from his 
matrimonial entanglement. But Sir Robert Cour- 
tenay lived until 1242, whilst his wife survived him 
many years, is believed to have married again, and 
it is certain that in her widowhood she at length 
took the veil and retired to the cloister. 

Baldwin de Redvers, second Earl of Devon, died 
on the fourth of June, 1 155, at Quarr, in the Isle of 
Wight, and was buried there. 

He was succeeded by his eldest son, Richard de 
Redvers, whose wife is called " Dionisia," in a deed 
dated 1157, transcribed by Dugdale, and copied by 
Oliver. This is probably a mistake of the scribe 
for Hawisia, or Avis, since she bore the latter 
name, and was the daughter of Reginald, Earl of 
Cornwall, natural son of Henry I. By this lady 
he had a son and two daughters — Maud, who 
married William de Romara, Earl of Lincoln, and 

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The Earldom of Devon, 83 

Avis, wife of Sir Hugh Worthe, of Worth, in the 
parish of Washfield. 

Amongst the Normans who settled in this 
county immediately after the Conquest, were three 
brothers, Ralph, Reginald, and Robert, who, in all 
probability, first came here with the Conqueror, on 
his march westward in the autumn of 1067, and in 
the immediate train of his trusted follower, William 
de Pollei. 

The Domesday Record shows that, at the period 
of the Survey, 1080- 1086, Ralph and Reginald 
were settled at Witheridge, the latter being lord of 
that manor, under Robert, Earl of Mortaigne, 
whilst Ralph was also lord of the manor of Worth 
in Washfield. 

" Worde," " Weorth," or Worthe, commonly 
written Worth, is an Anglo-Saxon term, which 
signifies an enclosed estate. 

Both Reginald and Robert also acquired property 
in Plymstock, and the greater portion of the lands 
of the three brothers was alike held under De PoUei, 
who had thus alienated, to sub-tenants, eight, of the 
twenty-one Devonshire manors, his royal master 
had given him out of the spoil of the conquered 

Reginald succeeded his brother Ralph at Worth. 
His eldest son, and successor there, was called after 
his other uncle, Robert, of Plymstock, and his 
posterity, at first " De Worthe," or " De la Worthe," 
in reference to their habitation, ultimately became 
known as " Worthe " without the prefix. 

The said Reginald de Worthe received the 
honour of knighthood, and Sir Hugh Worthe of 

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84 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Worth, Kt., was fourth in descent from him. 

Richard, third Earl of Devon, died in 1162, and 
was succeeded by his son, Baldwin de Redvers, as 
fourth earl. 

This Baldwin de Redvers married Adeliza or 
Alice, daughter and ultimate heir of Ralph de 
Doles, sometimes written Dale, of Berry, whose 
arms were, " Or, a lion rampant azure." 

It has been invariably asserted, for some un- 
accountable reason, that he had " no issue by her, 
and that he was succeeded in the title by his 
brother Richard, who also died childless, and thus 
the earldom came to their uncle, William of 
Vernon"; but, in addition to the anachronism I 
have already explained, the existing armorial evi- 
dence assists to refute these statements. It seems 
perfectly clear, upon examination, that the fourth 
earl, who died almost immediately after his acces- 
sion to the title, left two sons, Richard and William, 
and the latter, having been born at Vernon, was 
known as William de Vernon. 

The mention by the latter, in a deed relating to 
Quarr Abbey, of "the Earl Baldwin my father, 
Adeliza my mother, and my senior brother Richard" 
has of course assisted the confusion as to his iden- 
tity, since the William "de Vernon" who witnessed 
the St. James' charter in 1143 (two generations 
previously) was also the son of an Earl Baldwin, 
whose wife was Adeliza or Alice, and he also had 
a senior brother Richard. 

So Richard de Redvers, whose widowed mother 
married secondly Andrew de Chauvens, and died 
between 1 199-12 lO (at Egg Buckland, without 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon. 85 

further issue, when her Manor of King's Carswell, 
granted her upon her second marriage, reverted 
to the Crown), succeeded his father (not brother) 
Baldwin as fifth earl, but only enjoyed his dignity 
for a short period. He died, childless, in 11 66, 
although he had married Emma de Ponte Arche, 
and, perhaps, subsequently, Margaret Bissett ; 
therefore his younger brother (not uncle), William 
de Vernon, came to the title as sixth earl. 

This William de Vernon executed a deed, as 
earl, in favour of his cousin Robert, son of his 
aunt "Avis Worthe," and this deed is sealed with a 
seal of arms precisely similar to that subsequently 
adopted by the Courtenay Earls of Devon, vtz,y 
three roundels, surmounted by a label of three 
points, which have since been invariably blazoned 
** Or, three torteaux, a label of three points azure." 

William de Vernon, sixth earl, married Mabel, 
daughter of the Earl of Mellent, and died on the 
tenth of September, 1217. He had three children — 
Baldwin, who predeceased him on the first of 
September, 12 16; Joan, who married William 
Brewer, of Tor-Brewer, and died without issue; 
and Mary, the wife of Robert Courtenay. 

Baldwin de Redvers, son of a father of the same 
name, by his wife Margaret Fitz-Gerald of Hare- 
wood, succeeded William de Vernon, his grand- 
father, as seventh earl. He married Amicia, 
daughter of Gilbert, Earl of Gloster, and died in 


His son, also called Baldwin, then inherited the 
title, and became the eighth earl of his name. By 
his wife, Avis of Savoy, he had an only child, John 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

86 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

de Redvers, who predeceased him, and the eighth 
earl departed this life in the year 1261. 

His only sister, Isabella de Redvers, had been 
the second wife of William de Fortz (commonly 
called De Fortibus), eighth earl of Albemarle, who 
had died in 1256, leaving issue by her, Thomas de 
Fortibus, his successor, who died unmarried before 
1269 ; Avice, wife of Ingelram de Percy, who died 
a childless widow in her brothers lifetime; and 
Avelina, wife of Edmund Plantagenet, Earl of 
Lancaster, who had no family either, and died in 

At the death of Baldwin, the eighth earl, his 
sister the Countess of Albemarle, became Countess 
of Devon in her own* right, and Lady of the Isle of 

The latter lordship she is said to have ultimately 
sold to the Crown, and its purchase from her, by 
Edward L, was declared to Parliament in 1301. 
The alleged amount of the purchase money was 
six thousand marks, but the claim was not set up 
until after the death of the countess, and there 
have always been strong suspicions that no such 
sale really took place, and that the Crown became 
possessed of this island, which had been the heri- 
tage of the Redvers family, in succession to the 
Fitz-Osborns, since the time of the second earl, by 
fraudulent means. 

The Countess Isabella survived her offspring, and 
as these had all died without children, she was 
the last of the Redvers line who held possession of 
the Earldom of Devon. She departed this life in 
the year 1293. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon. 87 

The Redvers family did not entirely become 
extinct with the death of Isabella de Fortibus. 
One branch of the Avenels, the descendants of 
Maud de Redvers, daughter of the second earl, 
flourished at Loxbeare, in the male line, until the 
reign of Hfenry VI. The posterity of Maud, wife 
of the Earl of Lincoln, failed in or about 1195, but 
that of Avis, the other daughter of the third earl, 
by her husband, Sir Hugh Worthe, of Worth, in 
Washfield, held that same property, in the elder 
male line, until the death, without issue, of the late 
Rev. Reginald Worth, of Worth, on the twelfth of 
March, 1880, and she still has direct male repre- 
sentatives, descended from the Worthes of Compton 
Pole, in the Parish of Marldon, an estate acquired 
by marriage with a co-heir of Sir John Doddes- 
combe, about 1347, and which, with land at Barn- 
staple, derived from Willington, likewise descended 
from Baldwin, second earl, was settled upon a second 
son, already referred to on a previous page. It is 
shown by family evidences and other records, that 
the final " e " was abandoned by the elder line in 
the time of Anthony " Worth " of Worth, 15 17. It 
was continued by the second house, of Compton 
Pole, until long after their migration to Crediton, 
and was ultimately changed into "y" by John, son 
of George Worthe, in the first half of the seven- 
teenth century. This John "Worthy" was a 
Puritan, and one of the Parliamentary Commis- 
sioners for the County of Devon in 1647. 

The Courtenays, as descendants of Mary de 
Redvers, daughter of the sixth earl, naturally laid 
claim to the earldom of Devon, and the whole of 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

88 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

the Redvers property, upon the death of Countess 

Fierce opposition, however, was made to their 
claim. The Bishop of Exeter, Walter Stapledon, 
proved himself their bitter opponent, and for the 
long space of forty-three years the Courtenays 
were not permitted to assume the title, whicli 
remained dormant, until at last, by a peremptory 
order from the Crown, they obtained possession of 
it, on February the twenty-second, 1335. 

It is difficult to understand why the Courtenay 
pretensions should have been so long opposed. 
Since a female had held the earldom, in the 
person of Isabella de Fortibus, the descendants 
of another female would naturally claim to succeed 
her ; but had William de Vernon been the person 
genealogists have hitherto made him, and had the 
third earl left, as asserted hitherto, two issueless 
sons, then Lady Avis Worthe, or her son, Robert, 
would have succeeded the last of these, and 
William de Vernon and his posterity would never 
have inherited at all. 

It was not until the latter portion of the reign of 
Henry III. that heraldry became reduced to a 
science, and prior to this, although armorial ensigns 
were frequently assumed and used, and appear 
upon seals of early date, yet they were generally 
so assumed arbitrarily, and were not of necessity 

In after ages, however, the charges upon old 
seals were very often taken as evidence of ancient 
coat armour, and these charges were attributed, as 
real armorials, to people who had been long dead, 

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The Earldom of Devon, 89 

and the use of them as hereditary armorials was 
confirmed by the heralds to their descendants. 

It is certain, from seals still in existence, that the 
Earls of Devon, from the time of Baldwin de 
Redvers, the second earl, down to William de 
Vernon, the sixth earl, possessed and used a seal 
which bore the device of a griffin trampling upon 
a small animal, like a dog; and the arms, there- 
fore, which were in after years attributed to these 
earls, were founded upon this seal, and have since 
been blazoned " Gules, a griffin segreant or." 

That William de Vernon, Earl of Devon, had a 
seal of his own, with a device similar to the arms 
now borne by the Courtenays, " Or, three torteaux, 
a label of three points azure," is also quite certain, 
as explained above. 

There is no evidence that either of the seals 
I have described were used by their owners for any 
other purpose than to confirm their deeds and 
charters ; but we are told by one old historian that 
Richard de Redvers, the fifth earl, took for arms 
**the blue lion," which was clearly derived from 
*' Doles" or *'Dale," and, as it is sufficiently evident 
now that his mother was " Alice, daughter and heir 
of Ralph de Doles," he very probably may have 
adopted her badge or cognisance, although, accord- 
ing to prevalent heraldic laws, he had no real 
right to do so in his said mother's lifetime. 

According to the "Pedigrees of Nobility" (MS. 
Harl. 1 441), Richard's great-grandson, who sur- 
vived until 1261^ first assumed this coat of Doles, 
" Or, a lion rampant azure " ; and this is very 
probable, because during the latter portion of this 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

go The Suburbs of Exeter, 

earl's lifetime the science of armory was much 
studied, and such ensigns had then become, or 
were fast becoming, hereditary. 

It is possible that William de Vernon adopted 
the seal, similar to the present Courtenay arms, to 
denote his affinity to Geoflry de Bouillon (for which 
reason. Gibbon suggests, the Courtenays themselves 
adopted them), who is said to have borne these arms 
in the Crusade in which he was famous. As for 
the " label," it has been invariably used to dis- 
tinguish the eldest son, or elder line, since the 
fourteenth century, but labels constantly appear, as 
in the case of William de Vernon's seal, early in 
the thirteenth, and in the earliest examples they 
were not intended as a mark of cadency. The label 
is simply a representation of the iron prongs, or 
feet, " lambels," which were attached to the crosses 
carried by pilgrims, that they might erect them in 
the ground without any difficulty at their various 
halting places; and therefore it was naturally 
adopted by the Crusaders as a cognizance, on 
account of its association with the great emblem 
of the faith. 

From the time of William de Vernon, 12 17, we 
hear nothing more of the label on his seal until 
the year 1335. 

Robert Courtenay, grandson of Reginald de 
Courtenay, succeeded, as I have said, to the Barony 
of Okehampton at the death of his mother. Avis, 
widow of William Courtenay, on the thirty-first of 
July, 1209. He used a seal of arms, as shown by 
his charter to the burgesses of Okehampton, already 
referred to, precisely similar to those now borne by 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon. 91 

the municipality of Okehampton, and which have 
been assigned to Baldwin de Brion, the first Baron 
of Okehampton and the great-great-grandfather of 
the said Robert's mother, Avis — "Chequy or and 
azure, over all two bars arg." 

Robert married, as I have said, Mary, youngest 
daughter of William de Redvers, of Vernon, sixth 
Earl of Devon, and the arms of his mother's family 
— his assumption of which clearly shows that in 
1209 he had no knowledge of any armorials to 
which he was entitled on his father's side, that is, 
in right of Courtenay — are on the right, or dexter 
side of the seal, space being left on the sinister 
side for his wife's arms, the marshalling of which 
should at that period have been effected by " dimi- 
diation." But the sinister side of the shield on 
this seal is left perfectly blank, which proves 
further, that his wife, Mary, had not then adopted 
any device, heraldic or otherwise, although a seal of 
her mother-in-law, Avis de Courtenay, exhibits the 
figure of a woman standing, which, however, has 
no armorial significance. 

Robert Courtenay had two brothers, William 
and Reginald. He served the office of Sheriff of 
Devon in 1232, and was also Sheriff of Oxford. 
He died at his Manor of Iwerne Courtenay, County 
Dorset, on the twenty-sixth of July, 1242, and his 
body was brought to Devonshire and was interred 
at Ford Abbey. 

His widow, who ultimately inherited the property 
of her sister, Joan de Briwere, is said to have 
married a second husband, Peter Prous, Lord of 
Gidleigh, but there is no absolute evidence of this. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

92 The Stiburbs of Exeter. 

It is certain, however, that she was for many years 
a widow, professed as a nun, and became Abbess 
of Quarr, in the Isle of Wight, which had, at first, 
a nunnery adjacent to the abbey. She was sub- 
sequently Abbess of Pratelles, in Normandy, with 
which her mother's family, the Mellents, were con- 

Sir Robert Courtenay left very little personal 
property. By Mary, his wife, he had two sons 
and a daughter ; the latter, called Avis, after her 
grandmother, was married to John Neville. He was 
succeeded in the Barony of Okehampton by his 
eldest son, John Courtenay, who married Isabella, 
daughter of Hugh de Vere, Earl of Oxford, died in i 
1273, and was buried at Ford Abbey. 

Sir Hugh Courtenay, Knight, their son and heir, 
born 1250, took to wife Eleanor, daughter of Hugfh ^ 
De Spencer. She died in i2iB^ ndJherh\isband i^>-i 
was laid by her side in the conventual church of 
Cowick, February, 1291, just previously to the 
death of Isabella de Fortibus, Countess of Devon 
and Albemarle. 

Hugh de Courtenay, his eldest son, had been 
born in 1275, and duly succeeded to the Barony of 
Okehampton, and, immediately upon the death of 
the said Isabella de Fortibus, he took possession of 
Tiverton Castle and of the rest of the Redvers 
property, as heir of his great-grandmother, Mary, 
he being then, through her, the representative of 
William Redvers, of Vernon, sixth Earl of Devon; 
and he also laid claim to the earldom. 

But, as I have said already, his claim to 
this dignity met with much opposition, and the ^ 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon. 93 

authorities, both in this county and elsewhere, 
distinctly declined either to pay him the "dues," 
or to recognize the title of Earl of Devon, which he 
had ventured to assume, so the dignity was virtually 
dormant for more than forty years. 

By his wife Agnes, daughter of Lord St. John, 
he had four sons and two daughters, and the 
second of his sons, Sir Hugh Courtenay, married 
Margaret de Bohun, daughter of Humphry, Earl of 
Hereford, and granddaughter, through her mother 
Elizabeth Plantagenet, of King Edward I. 

This marriage naturally increased the Courtenay 
influence at Court, so on the twenty-second of 
February, 1335, the aforesaid Hugh Courtenay, 
Baron of Okehampton, became Earl of Devon, by 
virtue of a peremptory order from the King, 
Edward III., and which was addressed to the 
Sheriff" of Devon, from the Court then at Newcastle- 
upon-Tyne. He died in 1340. 

His eldest son John Courtenay had been admitted 
into Holy Orders at Crediton, on the twenty-third 
of March, 13 13, although his reasons for having 
adopted the clerical profession have always been 
incomprehensible. He had become Abbot of 
Tavistock in 1334, but he is described as having 
been throughout his career, " very vain and much 
addicted to dress," and to some other more repre- 
hensible " pomps and vanities of this wicked 

He permitted " feasting and revelry " in the 
private chambers of the Abbey, and, as shown by 
our Episcopal Registers, he was more than once 
censured by the Bishop of Exeter, for riotous 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

94 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

living, and he involved the community over whicli 
he presided, to the extent of over ;£ 1,300, an 
enormous amount in those days. 

He survived until 1349, and upon his father's 
death, he succeeded, nominally, to the Barony of 
Okehampton, but he was passed over in the suc- 
cession to the Earldom, which was conferred upon 
his brother Hugh, whose wife. Lady Elizabeth 
Bohun, was the king's cousin. 

This illustrious Peer, one of the original Knights 
of the Garter, had a large family. 

His sixth son. Sir Philip Courtenay, was seated 
at Powderham, which estate had been his mother's 
dowry. He built the castle there, early in the 
reign of Richard II. 

Another of the sons, William, became Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury. 

Another, Sir Peter, was Constable of Windsor, 
grand standard bearer, and chamberlain. He died 
in 1405, and lies buried in Exeter Cathedral. 

The Earl's eldest son, Sir Hugh Courtenay, bom 
1327, was summoned to Parliament, as Baron 
Courtenay, in 1371. He left a son Hugh, who 
married Matilda, daughter of Joan Plantagenet, 
daughter of Edmund, Earl of Kent, by her second 
husband, Thomas Holland. Her third husband 
was the Black Prince. 

But both Lord Courtenay, and his only son, 
predeceased the earl, who, in consequence of the 
failure of his grandson's issue, was succeeded at 
his death, in 1377, by another grandson, Edward 
Courtenay, elder brother of Sir Hugh Courtenay, 
of Haccombe and Boconnoc, and son of Edward 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon. 95 

Courtenay, of Godlington, who had also died in his 
father's lifetime. 

This Edward, bom in 1357, was Admiral of the 
King's Fleet, and some time Earl Marshal of 
England. He subsequently had the misfortune to 
lose his eyesight, and is known in history as the 
" blind earl." 

Genealogists have held divided opinions as to 
the mother of his children, since Mills has stated 
that his wife was Eleanor, daughter of the Earl of 
March ; and Brooke, York Herald (than whom there 
cannot be a more untrustworthy authority, since he 
would have said or written anything that first oc- 
curred to him in opposition to Vincent or Camden), 
agrees with Mills. 

But the Roll of Parliament, first Edward IV., 
shows conclusively that "Eleanor, second daughter 
of Roger Mortimer, died childless," and other 
evidence, of equal value, goes to prove that she 
was never the wife of the earl, who was two gene- 
rations her senior, but of his young son Edward, 
who predeceased him. 

There was once armorial evidence at Tiverton, 
which confirmed the marriage of the earl, as set 
down in most of the pedigrees of his family, to 
Matilda, daughter of Thomas Lord Camoys, but 
she can hardly have been the mother of his 
children, since the eldest of these, Edward, was 
knighted in 1399, and the second of them, Hugh, 
who succeeded to the earldom, was "aged thirty 
at his father's death," and must therefore have 
been born in 1389. 

Matilda Camoys, without any doubt a second 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

96 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

wife, and very much her husband's junior, survived 
the earl forty-eight years, and died in 1467, as 
proved by the " Inquisition " taken after her 
decease — seventh Edward iV., No. 4. 

The second son of the " blind earl," Hugh Cour- 
tenay, succeeded his father on the fifth of December, 
14 19. He was also a distinguished naval officer, 
and Lord High Steward of England. He married 
a daughter of the Lord Talbot, and was followed 
by his son, Thomas, in 1422, who married Margaret 

Up to this time, through all the long period of 
two hundred and seventy years, the English Cour- 
tenays had been uniformly fortunate, whilst those 
of their name in France had been equally notorious 
for their miseries and troubles. 

Peter of Courtenay had, as we have seen, ascended 
the throne of Constantinople in 12 17, but two years 
later he had died in captivity, and during the suc- 
ceeding years, and until their final expulsion in 
1 261, his sons had certainly done nothing to redeem 
the prestige of their family. 

The short reign of Robert de Courtenay, the 
eldest of these, was little but a record of calamity 
and disgrace. 

His brother Baldwin, associated during his 
minority with John of Brienne, ruled alone after 
the year 1237, ^.nd then immediately commenced 
that "remarkable series of mendicant progresses" 
which have rendered his name memorable. He 
came to England on two occasions, but on his 
first visit he was stopped at Dover, and received a 
present of seven hundred marks, on condition of 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon, 97 

his immediate departure from these shores. 

During the whole of the twenty-five years of his 
reign he was reduced to the direst extremities for 
want of money. He dissipated the whole of the 
residue of his grandmother's dowry, which had 
come into his hands, until he had literally nothing 
left but the Marquisate of Ndmur, and the Lord- 
ship of Courtenay, both of which he endeavoured 
to alienate. 

But Louis IX. objected very strongly to the sale 
of Courtenay Castle, and it was ultimately annexed 
to the royal demesne. Baldwin, however, contrived 
to obtain a considerable sum from his royal kins- 
man, which he frittered away in useless expeditions. 

When in his palace at Constantinople, he tore 
down neighbouring houses, in order that he might 
use their materials for winter-fuel ; and he stripped 
the lead from the roofs of the churches, in order to 
provide for his daily expenses. 

He at length raised some small loans, at usuri- 
ous interest, from the Italian merchants, and at 
that time "pledged'' his son and heir Philip, who 
was left at Venice as security for the debt. 

Constantinople was rich in "relics," and, after 
one or two previous redemptions, the "Holy Crown 
of Thorns " was finally sent to Paris in exchange 
for a sum of ten thousand silver marks. 

"A large and authentic portion of the true Cross; 
the baby-linen of the Son of God ; the lance, 
sponge, and other instruments of the Passion ; 
the rod of Moses, and a portion of the skull of 
St. John the Baptist," soon rejoined their ancient 
companion, the "Crown of Thorns," in its new 


Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

98 The Suiurbs of Exeter. 

resting-place in the Gallic capital ; and the money 
received for them was unfortunately quickly spent. 

Such a state of things could not last for ever: 
the Latins were encompassed on every side, and in 
1 26 1 Michael Palaeologus marched into Constanti- 
nople, and the Emperor Baldwin de Courtenay 
fled to Italy, where he died in 1274. 

The line of the Counts of Edessa had failed with 
that Joscelin de Courtenay, who had ** vanished" in 
the fall of Jerusalem, and his name, as Gibbon 
tells us, had been lost by the marriages of his two 
daughters "with a French and a German baron." 

As for the many younger descendants of Prince 
Peter and Elizabeth Courtenay, his wife, they all 
sank lower and lower in the social scale, and after 
the death of Robert, Great Butler of France, they 
passed, from princes, to barons. 

The next generations were amalgamated with 
the simple gentry of Tanlay and of Champignelles. 
Some were soldiers, and some, those of the branch 
of Dreux, were merely of the condition of husband- 
men or paupers. 

They kept up their traditions, however, in one or 
other of their branches, and on the accession of the 
Bourbons these strenuously asserted the royalty 
of their descent, and, one of them having been 
accused of murder, in 1616, claimed to be tried as 
a "prince of the blood." 

All their petitions, however, were scornfully re- 
jected, one after the other, by the French govern- 
ment, and their " hopeless pursuit of modem 
honours" was terminated by the decease of the 
last male of their name, Charles Roger de Cour- 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon, 99 

tenay, in 1730; and the title of "Princess of the 
Blood Royal," which had been assumed by Hel6ne 
de Courtenay, Marchioness de Beaufremont, was 
suppressed by an edict of the Parliament of Paris, 
on the seventh of February, 1737. 

And these reverses of the French Courtenays 
had long -cast a sort of melancholy halo around 
their name, when Thomas, Earl of Devon, suc- 
ceeded his father at Tiverton in 1422, and with him 
began a succession of misfortunes for the English 
house, which may indeed be said to have lingered 
with it ever since, and which supports the prevalent 
idea as to the repetition of history. 

This Thomas, Earl of Devon, being allied to the 
family of Beaufort, was naturally devoted to the 
interests of the house of Lancaster. He died at 
the Abbey of Abingdon, from the effects, as it is 
believed, of poison, whilst in attendance on Henry 
VI., on the third of February, 1458, at a meeting 
which had been arranged in the vain hope of 
eflfecting a reconciliation between the adverse 

His eldest son, also called Thomas, held the 
earldom but three years. He was taken prisoner 
at the bloody battle of Towton, and was immedi- 
ately afterwards attainted and executed, his head 
being set over the gates of York. 

His brother, Henry, never succeeded to the title, 
as the attainder was not removed, yet Edward IV. 
permitted him to enjoy a portion of the family 
property, as a means of procuring his adherence 
to the Yorkist cause. But Henry retained the 
principles of his father and brother, engaged in a 



loo The Suburbs of Exeter, 

conspiracy against the King, and was beheaded at 
Salisbury, on the fourth of March, 1466. 

Then Tiverton Castle was given to Humphry 
Stafford, of Southwick, who was created Earl of 
Devon on the seventeenth of May, 1470, but he 
was beheaded by his own party for desertion, three 
months subsequently. 

John Courtenay, youngest brother of Henry, 
regained possession of the earldom, and estates 
pertaining to it, during the temporary restoration 
of the Lancastrians, but he fell, sword in hand, at 
Tewkesbury, together with his kinsman, the second 
Courtenay of Boconnoc, on the fourteenth of May, 
147 1. Thus the three brothers and their cousin 
sealed their fidelity to the Red Rose, and thus 
expired the line of Edward Courtenay, " the Blind 

Immediately after the Battle of Bosworth, Henry 
VII. restored the estates to Edward, grandson of 
Sir Hugh Courtenay, of Haccombe and Boconnoc, 
brother of the blind earl, and who was therefore 
heir-at-law. He was created Earl of Devon by 
patent, "to him and the heirs male of his body,'* on 
the twenty-sixth of October, 1485. 

This earl married his cousin, Elizabeth, daughter 
of Sir Philip Courtenay, of MoUand, and w^as the 
father of Sir William Courtenay, created a Knight 
of the Bath at the coronation of Henry VII. 

This Sir William Courtenay took to wife Katherine 
Plantagenet, daughter of King Edward IV. and 
youngest sister of Elizabeth, King Henry's queen. 

It was a most unfortunate marriage ; Henry VII. 
soon became jealous of his brother-in-law, and 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Earldom of Devon. loi 

shut him up in the Tower, "to keep him out of 
harm's way," and in the Tower he, and his son 
and grandson, practically resided, as prisoners. 

For although the Princess Katherine, or, as 
princesses were called in those days, the Lady 
Katherine, was the youngest sister, yet, as the 
intermediate sisters had no children, the Cour- 
tenays came very near to the succession to the 
Crown. So in the Tower Sir William remained, 
all through the reign of the first Tudor monarch. 

Henry VIII. released his uncle from captivity, 
and intended to restore him to the earldom, which 
he had forfeited by his attainder. The letters 
patent were made out for this purpose on the tenth 
of May, 151 1, but he was never " invested," and he 
died at Greenwich, of pleurisy, within a month of 
that date. 

By the express commands of the King, he was 
buried with the honours of an earl, to which 
dignity his son Henry, the King's first cousin, suc- 
ceeded, and the latter was further elevated to the 
Marquessate of Exeter, on the eighteenth of June, 
1525. Fourteen years afterwards he was attainted, 
imprisoned in the Tower, and beheaded on the 
ninth of June, 1539. 

His mother, the Princess Katherine, usually re- 
sided either at Colcombe Castle, in the Parish of 
Colyton, or else at Tiverton Castle, often in great 
poverty. There are still traditions in Devonshire 
as to the " quiet, proud, gentle lady," who used to 
walk about Tiverton with her little daughter Mar- 
garet, who, folks say, was choked by a fishbone in 
15 1 2, and lies buried at Colyton. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

I02 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

This tradition is supported by an inscription on 
the tomb at Colyton, of much later date, which 
sets forth that the said "Margaret was the daughter 
of William Courtenay, Earl of Devon, and the 
Princess Katherine, and that she died at Colcombe, 
choked by a fishbone, A.D. 15 12. 

But Margaret Courtenay is mentioned in the will 
of her grandfather, which was proved in the Pre- 
rogative Court of Canterbury on the eleventh of 
July, 1509, and this lady is also mentioned by her 
mother in a document dated 151 1 (3rd Henry 
VIII.), and signed " Kath. Devonshire," in which 
she states that Margaret, her daughter, is now 
above thirteen years of age, and that she proposes 
" to procure for her a fitting marriage/' 

This was found for her, in the person of Henry, 
Lord Herbert, eldest son of Charles Somerset, Earl 
of Worcester ; and she was living at Richmond, in 
attendance on the infant Princess Mary, on the 
second of July, 1520. She died before her husband, 
who married, secondly, Elizabeth, daughter of Sir 
Anthony Browne. 

So we can only conclude that the inscription at 
Colyton is a mendacious inscription, and was in- 
vented to support the tradition about "little choke- 
bone," as the "natives" call her, and which, like 
many other traditions about the Courtenays, can 
have had no foundation in fact. 

Edward Courtenay, the only surviving son of the 
Marquess of Exeter, by his second wife, Gertrude 
Blount, daughter of the Lord Mountjoy, was only 
twelve years old at the time of his father s execu- 
tion. The King kept him in the Tower, a close 

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The Earldom of Devon, 103 

prisoner, during the remainder of his reign, and 
there he continued all through that of Edward VI. 

When Mary came to the throne she was at once 
attracted by the personal appearance of her young 
kinsman, then twenty-six years old. The portraits 
of him still extant show that he must have been of 
tall and slight figure, with a typical Gourtenay 
face, and that he had a very plentiful supply of 
natural light brown hair. 

During the whole of his unhappy life, he had 
scarcely enjoyed two years of liberty, until the 
Queen first saw, and loved him ; but Mary was 
eleven years his senior, whilst her sister, who came 
with her to the Tower, was then only twenty years 
of age ; it can scarcely be wondered at that Gour- 
tenay, whilst paying, as in duty bound, the greatest 
deference to the Queen, secretly preferred Elizabeth. 

So that, although Mary at once restored him to 
his estates and created him Earl of Devon, "to 
him and his heirs male for ever," on the third of 
September, 1553, he seems to have carried on a 
private flirtation with Elizabeth, and to have actu- 
ally pledged his faith to her. 

Mary was indeed angry when she heard of this 
intrigue with her sister : had she not been, she 
could scarcely have been her father's daughter; 
and her indignation was increased by the rising 
of the Garews in Devonshire, and by the accusa- 
tions of Sir Thomas Wyat. 

So Gourtenay and Elizabeth were both com- 
mitted to the Tower, and the earl saved himself 
by repudiating any idea of serious intentions to- 
wards the princess'. 

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I04 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Mary never disgraced him, but she declined to 
see him again ; and Elizabeth detested the very 
name of Courtenay ever afterwards. 

The unfortunate youth asked permission to travel, 
and this was accorded him by the Queen. He went 
through France to Italy, and ultimately arrived at 
Padua, where he died, on the fourth of October, 
1556. It has been always believed that he was 
poisoned on suspicion of being a Lutheran. 

At his death, the estates at Tiverton, Okehamp- 
ton, and elsewhere, w-ere divided amongst the 
representatives of the four daughters of Sir Hugh 
Courtenay, of Haccombe and Boconnoc, the nieces 
of Edward, the '* Blind Earl." 

By an Inq. P.M., 3rd and 4th Philip and Mary, 
these were found to be "Reginald Mohun, Alexan- 
der Arundell, John Vivian the younger, Margaret, 
wife of Richard Buller, and John Trelawny." 

"Reginald Mohun" was great-great-grandson of 
William Mohun, of Hall, and of his wife, Isabell 
Courtenay. In the partition of property he acquired 
Okehampton Castle, and two-fourths of its manor. 
He was created a baronet in 161 2, and his son, Sir 
John Mohun, was raised to the peerage, as Baron 
Mohun of Okehampton, on the fifteenth of April, 

The fifth Lord Mohun was killed in a duel with 
the Duke of Hamilton, in 17 12. He left an only 
daughter, Mary, who married the second Lord 
Doneraile, and was ancestress of the present peer. 

" Alexander Arundell," of Talverne, was great- 
grandson of Sir John Arundell, and of Maud 
Courtenay. His grandson, Sir Thomas Arundell, 

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The Earldom of Devon, 105 

married Bridget, niece of the aforesaid Sir Regi- 
nald Mohun, Bart., and their great-grandson, 
Robert Arundell, was the last male of this branch 
of the Arundell family. His representative, Eliza- 
beth Lydia, wife of Mr. W. H. Shippard, declared 
herself to be the "senior co-heir of the line of 
Edward, Earl of Devon." 

" John Vivian the younger " was the son of John 
Vivian and of Elizabeth, eldest daughter and co- 
heir of Thomas Tretherffe, who was the grandson 
of John Tretherffe and of his wife, Elizabeth Cour- 
tenay. The latter is called, in a pedigree entered, 
at Heralds' College, 1531, "first daughter of Hugh 
Courtenay." John Vivian was the ancestor of Sir 
V. D. Vyvian, Bart., of Trelowarren. 

"Margaret, wife of Richard Buller," was younger 
sister of Elizabeth Vivian, and therefore the other 
co-heir of Thomas Tretherffe. She married, first, 
Edward Courtenay, of Wotton, by whom she had 
a son Peter, ancestor of the Courtenays long of 
Landrake. Through her second marriage with 
"Richard BuUer," of Tregarrick, she became the 
ancestress of the Bullers of Shillingham and 
Downes ; and General Sir Redvers H. Buller, v.C, 
K.C.B., of Downes, is tenth in direct descent from 

"John Trelawny'' was the great-grandson of a 
Trelawny of the same name, by his wife Florence 
Courtenay ; their marriage settlement is dated 
1468 (8th Edward IV.). He married Anne Resky- 
• mer, and was the grandfather of John Trelawny, of 
Trelawne, created a baronet on the first of July, 
1628. The present baronet is thirteenth in descent 

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io6 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

from Florence Courtenay, and is now the only 
direct male heir of either of the four daughters of 
Sir Hugh Courtenay, of Boconnoc, the grandson 
of an elder brother of Sir Philip Courtenay. 

But the male descendants of that Sir Philip 
Courtenay, of Powderham and Moreton Hamp- 
stead, sixth son of Hugh, Earl of Devon, and Lady 
Margaret Bohun, the first King Edward's grand- 
daughter, were still flourishing in the riverside 
home of their ancestors in 1556. 

During the preceding one hundred and sixty-five 
years they had preserved their estates and local 
position. They had intermarried with the Hunger- 
fords, the Bonvilles, the Edgcumbes, and the Pou- 
letts, and with many of the most popular West 
Country families besides. 

They had given sheriffs to Devonshire, knights 
to the Wars and to Parliament, bishops to Exeter 
and Norwich, and still occupied the social position 
to which their ancestry entitled them; their con- 
nection, moreover, with the elder line had been 
always remembered, and there had been constant 
intercourse between them and their kinsfolk at 
Tiverton ; and when the news of the Earl's death 
came home from Italy, Sir William Courtenay, of 
Powderham, was "heir male" to Edward, his far- 
away kinsman, and the rightfiil inheritor of the 

But Sir William was killed at the siege of St* 
Quentin in the following year, 1557, and his son 
and successor, also called William, was at that 
time only four years old. 

He grew up to man's estate, was High Sheriff of 

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The Earldom of Devon, 107 

Devon, and he it was who is said to have drawn 
his sword upon the judge at Exeter, and to have 
threatened to " make his Lordship's body as red as 
his scarlet gown." 

His first wife, and the mother of his family, was 
Elizabeth, daughter of Henry, Earl of Rutland ; 
and he lived all through the reigns of Elizabeth 
and James, and far into that of Charles I. 

For a good many years of his life he resided in 
Ireland, as one of the "undertakers" for the settle- 
ment of that country. He obtained a grant of 
Newcastle, with a large quantity of the confiscated 
land of the Earl of Desmond, and thus laid the 
foundation of the great Limerick property which 
has since been enjoyed by his descendants. 

He died in 1630, and never made any attempt to 
recover the earldom. It is not clear that he knew 
anything about his right to it. The estates, which 
had descended with it from the commencement of 
the twelfth century, had been dispersed, as I have 
shown, amongst Mohuns, Arundells, Tretherffes, 
and Trelawnys, and their descendants ; and Eliza- 
beth had a rancorous hatred for the memory of the 
last earl. 

It is true that the Powderham property and its 
dependencies would have amply supported the 
dignity of the ancient title, had Powderham's lord 
acquired it ; but this he failed to do, and James L, 
upon his accession, made Charles Blount, Lord 
Mountjoy, Earl of Devon, by patent, on the tw^enty- 
first of July, 1603. This creation, ho^vever, fortu- 
nately became extinct again in 1606. 

Sir William's son, Francis, predeceased him. 

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io8 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

His grandson, Sir William Courtenay, was created 
a baronet in 1644, but is reported to have "dis- 
dained the title"; at all events, he never assumed 
it. He married Margaret, daughter of Sir William 
Waller, the Parliamentary general, by his wife, the 
heiress of Reynell of Ford ; and thus acquired the 
Wolborough estates, which have since been de- 
veloped into the extremely valuable property at 
Newton Abbot. 

His grandson, however, styled himself " second 
baronet"; he was also Member of Parliament for 
Devon. By his wife, Lady Ann Bertie, he had 
two surviving sons, William, and Henry Reginald. 

The first of these becanie Viscount Courtenay 
ten days only before his death, by patent dated the 
sixth of May, 1762. 

The viscounty expired with his grandson, who 
never married, but whose claim to the Earldom of 
Devon, created by Queen Mary, was admitted by 
the House of Lords on the fifteenth of March, 1831, 
and it was found then that all his predecessors, 
from the time of Sir William, the hero of St. 
Quentin, had been really Earls of Devon, although 
the title had been dormant for the long period of 
two hundred and seventy-five years. 

The earl died in May, 1835, when, although the 
viscounty became extinct, the greater honour, to- 
gether with the baronetcy, passed to William 
Courtenay, his second cousin, son of Henry Regi- 
nald Courtenay, Bishop of Exeter, and grandson 
of Henry Reginald Courtenay, M.P., brother of the 
first viscount. 

And thus this ancient earldom has fallen into 

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The Earldom of Devon, 109 

the possession of its present owners ; and nothing- 
can be more singular than have been the vicissi- 
tudes of the Courtenay race, in its three lines 
of Edessa, of Constantinople, and of England. 
Whether the latter branch has any real connection 
with the two former, matters little now; the English 
Courtenays do not require the proof of such a con- 
nection to add lustre to their name, which long 
since became identified with the history of England, 
first as Barons of Okehampton, then as Earls of 
Devon, and as soldiers, as statesmen, as Royal 
councillors, as prelates, and as mates for the 
daughters of our proudest English nobles and for 
Royalty as well. 

The fortunes and misfortunes of the English 
Courtenays are equalled only by those of their 
French namesakes ; but, unlike the latter, the 
former have always been enabled to stem the tide 
of adversity, and to keep themselves on the sur- 
face of the most troubled waters. Often indeed 
have they been made to realise the signification of 
their famous motto, ^'^ Ubi lapsus quid feci?' but 
their falls have hitherto been invariably the pre- 
cursors of fresh splendour, and, like Phoenix, they 
have "revived fi-om their ashes" to continue the 
nobility of their illustrious name. 

And they have always been popular with their 
fellow-men, always easy and light-hearted under 
the most depressing conditions of their varied 
fortunes; ever given, each in his generation, to 
hospitality and to acts of neighbourly kindness. 
" Truest fi"iend and noblest foe.*' 

To their most recent troubles it is unnecessary to 

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no The Suburbs of Exeter^ 

do more than refer. The causes of them are well 
known and widely regretted, and they sadly em- 
bittered the lives of the last two peers. Let us 
hope that brighter days are in store for their suc- 
cessors, and that Powderham Castle, the ancient 
dowry of a king s grand-daughter, will long con- 
tinue to be the home of a Courtenay Earl of Devon. 

The arms of the Courtenays, as at present borne 
by them, should be thus blazoned: "Quarterly ist 
and 4th Or, 3 torteaux," assumed to be for Cour- 
tenay ; " 2nd and 3rd Or, a lion rampant azure," 
assumed to be for Redvers. 

A few further remarks as to these arms appear 
to be absolutely necessary. 

The primitive bearing of the Courtenays is known 
to have been "Gules, 3 bezants," and these were 
evidently borne by the Courtenay emperors in 
virtue of their connection with old Byzantium, 
afterwards known as Constantinople. 

But it has, I think, been conclusively shown that 
the English Courtenays could not have inherited 
arms from their French namesakes, even if Eliza- . 
beth Courtenay was really the daughter of Reginald, 
as she is supposed to have been, because it was 
Elizabeth Courtenay's son who was the first Cour- 
tenay Emperor of Constantinople,, and assumed 
these arms as Emperor, and the Devonshire Cour- 
tenays are certainly not descended from Elizabeth 
Courtenay's son. 

Moreover, we have seen that Robert Courtenay, 
the husband of Mary Redvers, was ignorant of his 
claim to any arms of this description, and that he 
sealed with armorials which have been ascribed 

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The Earldom of Devon, 1 1 1 

invariably to his mother's ancestor, Baldwin of 

And we have also seen that William de Vernon, 
sixth Earl of Devon, was the son of the lady who 
brought in the "blue lion," and that he sealed with 
a seal of arms precisely similar in appearance to the 
arms of the French Courtenays, save for the label, 
although in reality it was quite dissimilar ; but in 
those days no means had been invented to express 
tinctures otherwise than by the use of actual colours, 
and the latter could not be shown upon a seal. 

Moreover, the seal of William de Vernon, which 
he. used as Earl of Devon, had, in addition to the 
three roundels, a label of three points. 

So that the seal of William de Vernon may be 
blazoned, as the arms of the DevonshireCourtenays 
were afterwards emblazoned. 

William de Vernon's elder brother, Richard, is 
said to have been the first to use the "blue lion." 
According to modern heraldic ideas, he had no 
right to do so, without special license, and merely 
because his mother was an heiress, since he pre- 
deceased her. William de Vernon himself only 
survived his mother about twelve months, and his 
eldest son predeceased him. 

But if the seventh earl had inherited, or adopted, 
his grandfather's seal, he would, according to mo- 
dem usage, have borne, " Quarterly i and 4, Or, 3 
torteaux, a label of three points azure — Redvers ; 
2 and 3, Or, a lion ramp, azure — Doles. 

The griffin, long used by the Redvers family on 
their seals, was merely a device, and it was aban- 
doned entirely about the end of the reign of King 

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1 1 2 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

John ; and although the griffin seal may have 
passed from father to son, yet it disappeared so 
soon, that it is improbable that it was ever looked 
upon as an hereditary armorial ensign. The state- 
ment of the heralds of a much later date, that it 
was so used, was merely an heraldic assertion, 
founded upon the device on the seals which are 
still extant ; and similar assertions, as to the arms 
borne by Edward the Confessor, and other illus- 
trious people who flourished at a very much earlier 
period than he did, and at a later period also, may 
most of them be traced to a similar origin. 

It is very improbable that Robert de Courtenay 
or his immediate posterity ever used the arms now 
borne by his descendants ; and his wife was not an 
heiress, but merely what is known to genealogists 
as an " eventual heir." 

The high tomb in Exeter Cathedral has a series 
of coats of arms, which surround its base, and 
which exemplify the usually received account of 
the descent of the English Courtenays from the 
French knight, Atho. This tomb, however, is 
quite valueless for all purposes of real evidence, as 
it was not erected until after the death of Hugh 
Courtenay, the second earl of his name, and was 
dedicated in 1381. His wife, Margaret (De Bohun), 
died at Powderham, on the sixteenth of December, 

The tomb originally stood in the nave, but has 
now been removed to the south transept. The row 
of shields commences on the north side, and runs 
from east to west. The first ten shields alike bear 
" Or, J torteauXy' for Courtenayy tinctured in the 
proper colours. 

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The Earldoni of Devon, 1 13 

First — ^Atho, the French knight, founder, and 
seneschal, of Courtenay Castle, impaling a blank 

Second — ^Josceline, son of Atho, impaling Mont- 

Third — Milo de Courtenay, son of Josceline, im- 
paling Nevers. 

Fourth — Reginald de Courtenay, the asserted son 
of Milo, impaling a blank shield for Donjon, his 
first wife. 

Fifth — ^The same Reginald de Courtenay, im- 
paling Arg. five chevronels gules (D'Abrincis), for 
his second wife, Matilda Fitz-Ede, daughter and 
co-heir of Maud D'Abrincis. 

Sixth — France, within a bordure engrailed gules, 
impaling Elizabeth Courtenay, asserted daughter 
of Reginald. As they now appear, the arms of 
Peter of France are emblazoned. Azure, 3 fleurs de 
lys or, a bordure engrailed gules. 

These, the bordure excepted, are the modern 
arms of France, which were not used by the French 
monarchs, prior to the second half of the fourteenth 
century, when Charles V. thus limited the number 
of the lilies. Their limit in the present instance, 
however, may have been intended as a mark of 
cadency, which was occasionally effected by a 
similar suppression, although, more usually, by an 
addition, of charges. The bordure is an undoubted 
indication of cadency, but the tincture, gules, with 
the field azure, is unusual, although the rule that 
interdicted ** colour upon colour," was not invari- 
ably followed by foreign heralds ; but on the whole 
I think that Prince Peters shield has suflFered 

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114 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

considerably from more than one "restoration." 

Seventh — William Courtenay, son of Reginald, 
impaling three (should be five) chevronels gules, 
for Avis, daughter and co-heir of Maud D'Abrincis 
and half-sister to the aforesaid Matilda Fitz-Ede. 

Eighth — Robert Courtenay, impaling " Or, a lion 
ramp, azure," in supposed right of Redvers. 

Ninth — ^John Courtenay, son of Robert, quar- 
tering the blue lion, and impaling Vere. John 
Courtenay died in 1273, and, to say nothing of 
the fact, that the system of " quartering," was un- 
known in his time, he had no right to quarter his 
mother s coat, for she was not "ultimate heir" to 
the Redvers property in her own lifetime, or until 
twenty years after his death, and this shield is 
alone sufficient to cast a fair amount of suspicion 
upon the authenticity of the whole series. 

Tenth — Sir Hugh Courtenay, son of John, again 
incorrectly quartering the blue lion, and impaling 

Eleventh — Or, 3 torteaux, a label of 3 points 
azure, quartering the blue lion, and impaling St. 
John — Hugh Courtenay, son of Hugh. This Hugh 
Courtenay inherited the estates of the Redvers earls 
in 1293, and was created Earl of Devon in 1335. 
With him the label re-appears for the very first 
time since the death of William de Vernon in 12 17, 
and the arms are now borne exactly as they appear 
on William de Vernon's seal. 

The inference is, I think, plain. When Hugh 
Courtenay succeeded to the Redvers heritage, at 
the death of Isabella de Fortibus, he assumed the 
Redvers arms, just as anyone might assume in- 

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The Earldom of Devon. 115 

herited arms, by royal license, at the present day ; 
and the arms thus assumed were, " Or, 3 torteaux, 
a label of 3 points azure," for RedverSy sixth Earl 
of Devon, and "Or, a lion ramp, azure," for Doles, 
brought in by Redvers. 

The armorials on the tomb, shown previously to 
his, were, perhaps, originally " Gules, 3 bezants." 
If so, they were the arms of Courtenay of Con- 
stantinople, and are now wrongly tinctured, and 
although it is most improbable that they ever 
rightly belonged to Reginald Courtenay and to his 
male descendants, yet they support assertions, 
evidently founded upon the untrustworthy monastic 
chronicle, which was probably devised to give the 
Courtenays a more than customary illustrious 
origin, that Reginald de Courtenay "must have 
stood high in his own estimation and in that of 
the world, since he could impose on the son of a 
King the obligation of adopting for himself, and all 
his children, the name and arms of his daughter." 

The twelfth shield on the tomb is that of Bohun, 
impaling the royal arms of Edward I. 

The thirteenth, that of Hugh, second Earl of 
Devon, similar to that of his father, and impaling 

The fourteenth, that of Hugh de Courtenay, 
eldest son and heir-apparent (who, with his son 
and heir, died in the earl's lifetime), impaling Brion, 

The fifteenth displays the arms of Sir Edward 
Courtenay, the earl's second son, whose posterity 
carried on the line^ and impales Dawney. Sir 
Edward's arms are differenced with a bend arg., 
which should be, a bend compony arg. and azure. 

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ii6 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

These arms, differenced in accordance with one of 
the then prevailing methods, by the omission of 
one charge, the label, and by the insertion of a 
bend, in place thereof, and tinctured, **arg. and 
azure," were in stained glass in a window of the 
south aisle of the Cathedral nave, which stood 
opposite the original position of the tomb, and 
was contemporary with it. They were seen and 
" tricked " by Richard Symonds, on the twentieth 
of September, 1644, «^^d l^is manuscript, in which 
they occur, is preserved amongst the Harleian 
MSS., No. 939, fo. 25D. 

The sixteenth shield is on the south side of the 
foot of the tomb, and shows Canterbury impaling 
Courtenay. It commemorates William Courtenay, 
Archbishop of Canterbury, who, as Bishop of Lon- 
don, consecrated this, his father's resting-place, in 
1 38 1. He was overseer of his mother's will. 

The seventeenth shield is that of his brother, Sir 
Philip Courtenay, and impales Wake. The Powder- 
ham estate was settled upon this Sir Philip and his 
heirs, and he was the direct ancestor of the present 
Earl of Devon, and executor of his mother's will. 

The eighteenth, and last, shield contains the 
arms of Sir Peter Courtenay, Kt., brother to Hugh, 
Edward, William, and Philip, and the other exe- 
cutor of his mother's will. He died unmarried. 
Archbishop Courtenay and his brothers, Philip and 
Peter, all difference the label with nine plates, 
three on each point. 

It will be seen that Hugh de Courtenay, the first 
of his name who was Earl of Devon, was the first 
of the Courtenays who used the exact device which 

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The Earldom of Devon. 117 

is found on the seal of the sixth earl, William 
Redvers de Vernon; and it is perfectly certain, I 
think, that the former assumed these arms with the 
Redvers title and estates^ and that the label was not 
taken as a distinctive mark of cadency y but as an 
essential part of the arms. 

The earls of Devon continued to use the label 
down to the death of Queen Mary's earl at Padua, 
in 1556. The younger branches of the family, at 
Powderham, Haccombe, and Boconnoc, also con- 
tinued to use it, and duly differenced it to show 
their cadency, but, in process of time, the label was 
so universally looked upon, by people generally, as 
a distinct indication of the elder son, and to be 
borne only during the father s lifetime, that the 
younger Courtenays ultimately discarded it alto- 
gether, and the Powderham branch have long 
ceased to use it, but their abandonment of it was 
very ill advised, for the reasons I have adduced, 
and it is just as much a portion of their arms, as 
are the three torteaux. Each individual Courtenay 
who can show a descent from Robert, and his wife 
Mary Redvers, is entitled to use the label, of course 
duly marked for cadency. 

Lord Courtenay, during his fathers lifetime, 
might surmount it with another, a smaller, label of 
metal [arg. or or^ 

The earl's second son should charge it with a 
crescent, of metal, but in the latter case the crescent 
would become an inherent part of the arms of the 
second house, and would be itself charged with a 
label, of colour, by the eldest son, of the said second 
son, as long as his father was alive. 

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1 18 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Or, to sum up the matter shortly, the Courtenay 
label should at once be restored to its proper place . 
in the Courtenay arms, and should simply be 
duly differenced, by the various members of the 
family, in accordance with the customary laws of 

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piNHOE, which includes the hamlets, or bartons, 
^ of Monkaton, Pinpound, Langerton, Herring- 
ton, and Wotton, is in the Deanery of Aylesbeare, 
and about two and a half miles distant from Exeter, 
with which it is connected by rail. In 1881 it 
possessed only one hundred and twenty houses, 
scattered over seventeen hundred and thirty-five 
acres of land, with a population of five hundred 
and ten inhabitants. 

During the last decade, however, many conve- 
nient and handsome residences have been erected 
at Pinhoe, more especially upon the commanding 
acclivity above the Church, and it is now, as it 
deserves to be, one of the most popular suburbs of 
the " ever-faithful city.'' 

But despite its natural advantages of situation, 
Pinhoe possesses an unusually attractive history, 
since this little village has been rendered memo- 
rable, in all succeeding ages, by the great battle 
fought within its limits nearly nine hundred years 
ago, and sixty-five years before the Norman Con- 

It was in the days of Ethelred the second, whose 
dilatory disposition has handed him down to pos- 

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I20 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

terity as " the unready," and in the year of Grace 
looi, that the Vikings' ships, which had periodically 
invaded and ravaged the country for more than 
two hundred years, returned again to this neigh- 
bourhood, where they had more. than once expe- 
rienced disastrous repulses at the hands of the men 
of Devon. 

At one time the " Dubhgalls,'* the dark strangers, 
otherwise the Danes, contracted an alliance with 
the Comu-Britons, landed in Cornwall, and made 
inroads into Devonshire, in 806, but King Egbert 
himself then met them, and totally defeated their 
savage hordes ; still they combined to keep our 
Saxon forefathers in a constant state of anxiety, 
and the land of the West was never safe from their 
incursions, and consequently never at rest. 

In 851, they were again defeated in Devonshire 
and driven back to their ships, which were sub- 
sequently dispersed at Sandwich by King Athel- 
stan in person, and again twenty-five years later, 
these Northern pirates wasted Northumbria, and 
made their way from thence to our coast, and in 
defiance of their solemn oath, to observe the treaty 
of peace they had made with King Alfi-ed, and in 
violation of their promise to leave the country, 
they descended treacherously upon Exeter and took 
possession of the city, but they left it again at 
"harvest time" in the following year, and in 878, 
Hubba, the brother of Halfdane, landed in Devon- 
shire, and was defeated and killed. And then was 
taken the Danish ensign, known as the raven, and 
to which magical powers were ascribed, and this 
celebrated flag must have been of a somewhat 

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The Parish of Pinhoe. 1 2 1 

similar nature to subsequent heraldic achievements, 
for it is said to have been "a small triangular 
banner, fringed, bearing a black raven on a blood 
red field." 

It is almost certain that the scene of most of the 
early fights to which I have briefly referred may be 
discerned from the high ground which surmounts 
and surrounds Pinhoe Churchyard. Thence may 
be seen Woodbury Common, and the white houses 
of the seaport of " Pratteshide," now Exmouth, with 
the surf breaking over Exmouth bar; the dark ridge 
of Haldon forming a sombre background to the 
extensive panorama, the scene of King Athelstan's 
victory in 85 1 ; and all around the spot on which 
we stand was fought the great fight of the first 
year of the eleventh century, to which I must now 

Sweyn, Swegen, surnamed "Tveskjoeg" or the 
" forked beard," was the father of Cnut, who sub- 
sequently dominated the whole of England, and 
reigned as King Canute. Sweyn has been gener- 
ally believed to have led the army which arrived 
in Devonshire in looi, and which burnt Teignton 
and the villages in that neighbourhood, landed at 
" Pratteshide," and marched to besiege Exeter. 

According to recent authorities, however, the 
real commander appears to have been Pallig, 
Sweyn's brother-in-law, who had actually em- 
braced Christianity, but had turned traitor to his 

The city of Exeter was successfully defended 
from this onslaught, but the country around suffered 
very considerably. Cola, the English general, and 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

122 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Edsy, the sheriff, with the men of Devon and 
Somerset, followed up the invaders, who retreated 
upon Pinhoe. There a desperate battle was fought,, 
which raged from " early morning until eventide," 
and, although the hardy sons of the Western shires, 
engaged the enemy with determined valour, yet 
they had to succumb to the skilled tactics of the 
veteran barbarians ; they were defeated with great 
loss, Pinhoe, Broadclist, and the hamlets and cot- 
tages in the immediate neighbourhood were looted 
and burnt, the simple country folk were put to the 
sword, and their wives and daughters were insulted 
and violated. 

Laden with spoil, the Danes abandoned for the 
time any further attempt on Exeter, and, content 
with their devastation of its suburbs, retired to 
their ships at " Pratteshide," from whence they 
sailed to the Isle of Wight. 

There were reprisals, naturally, as soon as the 
opportunity for them occurred. By order of Ethel- 
red, a massacre of all the Danes in England was 
commenced upon St. Brice's day (November i3th> 
1002) ; then neither age nor sex was spared, and 
Pallig and his children were butchered before the 
face of his wife, Gunhilda, sister of King Sweyn, 
who was herself also put to death. But the King 
returned the next year to revenge his sister's death, 
and this massacre led up to the intermittent rule of 
our Danish kings, from 1013 to 1042. 

A small sum of sixteen shillings per annufti 
which the Vicar of Pinhoe receives, as of ancient 
custom, probably originated in a provision for 
perpetual masses to be said by the parish priest 

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The Parish of Pinhoe. 123 

for the souls of the victims of the battle of Pinhoe. 
Chappie, in his "Collections," mentions an untrust- 
worthy but interesting tradition, that it was settled 
for ever upon the then parish priest and his suc- 
cessors, to commemorate his military services upon 
that memorable occasion ; for, the gallant Church- 
man, is said to have saddled his ass, and to have 
kept his countrymen supplied with " sheaves of 
arrows" from Exeter, at a critical period of the 
fight. Traces of the " barrows," under which the 
dead were buried, may yet be found on the high 
ground above the village, and the actual scene of 
the action may still be ascertained from these. 

Amongst those who distinguished themselves for 
their fidelity to King Cnut was a certain Godwin, 
M^hose military services to that monarch were of 
the highest value, and who consequently treated 
him with the utmost regard and confidence. 

Hume says that he "bestowed his daughter upon 
him in marriage," but it is well known that Gun- 
hilda, King Cnut's daughter, was the wife of the 
Emperor Henry HI. of Germany. Godwin's wife — 
he is said to have married her secondly — was 
Githa, sister of King Sweyn, and therefore an 
aunt of Cnut's. This powerful personage, generally 
known in history as Earl of Kent, and who has 
left his name to that dangerous part of the coast 
known as " the Goodwyn Sands," ruled the whole 
of the south and west of England, and was Earl of 
Devon, Dorset, Sussex, Hampshire, and Cornwall 
in the time of Edward the Confessor, who, for 
political reasons, married his daughter Editha. 

Other children of Godwyn were the Earls Harold, 

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124 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

who succeeded his brother-in-law Edward as King 
of England, Sweyn, Tosti, and Leofwin ; and the 
last, at the death of King Edward, was the owner 
of the soil of Pinhoe. This is conclusively proved 
by the entry in the Exeter Domesday, which states 
that the King has a manor called Pinnoc (in the 
Exchequer record it is written " Pinnoch," and is a 
word of Keltic derivation, descriptive of an elevated 
situation), which Earl Leofwine held on the day on 
which King Edward died. It was taxed at two 
hides, less one virgate of land, and could be worked 
with ten ploughs. King William held three vir- 
gates of this estate in demesne, and upon the 
residue of the property there were resident eight 
villeins, six bordarii, or cottagers, and one serf. 
The wood there extended to one hundred acres, 
with a similar amount of pasture land, and twenty 
acres of meadow. In 1086 it rendered yearly £t 
by weight. 

The same authority tells us that " the Abbot of 
Battle holds the Church of this Manor, and there 
is annexed to it one virgate of the aforesaid land, 
which is worth yearly five shillings." 

King William having thus wrested the Manor of 
Pinhoe from the brother of the unfortunate Harold, 
the Crown continued to hold it until the reign 
of Henry III., when it was given, we are rather 
carelessly told by Lysons, " Magna Britannia," 
vol. ii., p. 390, "to Robert de Vallibus, or De Vaux, 
whose heiress brought it to Sir Robert Multon." 

In the time of the Conqueror, the north country 
Barony of Gillesland was conveyed by Randolph de 
Meschines to a certain individual called " Hubert." 

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The Parish of Ptnhoe, 125 

^* Gill," in the Cumbrian dialect, signifies a dale 
or valley, and, from the period of his acquisition of 
this property, Hubert and his descendants adopted 
the Norman name of Vaulx or VauXy in Latin, " De 

This Hubert de Vaux had a son, Robert, who 
married Ada D'Engaine, widow of Simon de Mor- 
ville, and had two sons, Robert and Ralph. 

Failing the issue of his elder brother, Ralph de 
Vaux succeeded to the property in Cumberland, 
and had a son Robert, a powerful nobleman, and 
one of the barons in arms against the tyranny of 
King John. 

But, this Robert de Vaux of Gillesland, was 
much in favour with Henry III., who gave him 
great addition to his original inheritance out of 
the Crown manors, and amongst these manors he 
seems to have included the Devonshire one of 

And this Robert, had a son Hubert, and it was 
the daughter of the latter, instead of the former, 
Maud de Vaux, who carried the Pinhoe property 
and the rest of her estates to her kinsman and 
husband, Thomas de Molton, or Multon, son of 
Thomas de Molton by his second wife Ada, daughter 
and co-heir of, the archiepiscopal assassin, Hugh 
de Morville. 

From a note appended to the Heralds' Visitation 
of this county, 1564, it appears that "in the time 
of Henry III., * Robert de Vallibus' was the chief 
Lord of the Manor of Pinhawe, otherwise Pynhoe, 
and that * Edward de Pinhoe' a copy -holder 
(* Chartilarius sive liber tenens ') lived there. In 

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126 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

the time of Edward II., Sir Thomas Molton was 
the Lord of Pinhoe, and lived there." 

It is certain that John de Molton, as Lysons 
says, inherited the Manor of Pinhoe. He is stated, 
in the Visitation record referred to above, to have 
been a Knight, a son of Sir Thomas Molton, Lord 
of Pinhoe, temp. Edward II. 

But Sir Thomas Molton, great grandson of 
Maud de Vallibus, of Pinhoe, who probably died 
soon after the year 13 13, since he received no 
summons to Parliament subsequently to the 
seventh of Edward IL, could have left no male 
legitimate issue, because his daughter Margery, by 
his wife, also called " Margery," was his heir^ and 
carried the Barony of Gillesland to her husband 
Ralph Dacre ; and her descendant, in the fourth 
generation, Humphry Dacre, was declared by 
Edward IV. to be, by right of inheritance, Baron 
Dacre of Gillesland. 

This Humphry Dacre, third son of Thomas, Lord 
Dacre, had become possessed of Gillesland, and 
other manors, by virtue of a " fine," levied by his 
father, who had died in 1457. 

So that we can only suppose that Sir Thomas 
Molton, whose wife, " Margery," was the daughter 
and co-heir of Sir Edward Hereward, must have 
left the Pinhoe property to his natural son, Sir 
John de Molton. 

This Sir John de Molton, whose wife's name is 
uncertain, left an only daughter, Maud, who 
married Sir John Stretche. 

Sir John Stretche had an only son, Thomas, who 
died without issue, and two daughters, co-heirs to 

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The Parish of Pinhoe, 127 

their brother, viz., Elizabeth, who married Thomas 
Beauchamp, and Cecilia, or Cicely, who took the 
Pinhoe property for her portion, and whose second 
husband, William Cheney, was Lord of Pinhoe in 
her right, 14th Richard II., 1390. 

The Cheney family continued to reside at Pinhoe 
until the death of John Cheney, who was Sheriff of 
Devon, 32nd Henry VI., and in 2nd, 3rd, and 13th 
of Edward IV., he is called " Joseph Chidley," in 
Risdon's list. His father. Sir John Cheney, of 
Pinhoe, who married Elizabeth, daughter and 
eventual heir of John Hill, of Spaxton, had filled 
the same office in 1443. 

A more detailed account of this family will be 
found in my " Devonshire Parishes," Vol. ii., pp. 
59-61, so T need not repeat what I have said of 
them there in connection with other property they 
held at Littlehempston in this county. 

Lysons says, that Pinhoe Manor "passed by 
successive marriages to Cheney and Walgrave. 
The latter statement, however, is hardly correct. 
The last John Cheney, who, as I have said above, 
was thrice Sheriff of Devon, left four daughters, 
co-heirs; the sons of the three eldest of these, 
Thomas, son of Anne Hussey; William, son of 
Elizabeth and William Clopton ; and John, son of 
Isabella and Edward Walgrave, together with their 
aunt, Ellen, wife of George Babington, divided the 
Pinhoe property in the reign of Henry VIII., as 
shown by an inquisition dated 1531, which explains 
the statement of Sir William Pole, also quoted 
by Lysons, that " the Manor had lately been sold 

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128 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Lysons adds that "In 1655 the Barton belonged 
to William Kirkham, Esq., was afterwards a seat 
of the Elwills, Baronets, and is now, 1822, the 
property of Mrs. Freemantle, daughter of the last 
Baronet of that family.*' 

The Barton of Pinhoe belonged to the Kirkhams 
long before 1655, since it was the property and 
residence of Richard Kirkham, second son of Sir 
John Kirkham, Kt., Sheriff of Devon, 1523. 

His son. Sir William Kirkham, of Blackdon and 
Pinhoe, married into the Hampshire family of 
Tichborne, and had eight sons and four daughters. 

The eldest of these, Richard Kirkham, "aged 
30" in 1620, died without issue, and was succeeded 
by his next brother, Francis, who married Elizabeth, 
one of the daughters and co-heirs of Edward Roope, 
of Bidwell. This " Francis Kirkham, of Pinhoe, 
Esq.," and Elizabeth his wife, were presented as 
"Recusants," eleventh of April, 1639, but they 
had previously obtained letters of dispensation 
from Charles I., under the great seal, dated the 
twenty-first of April, 1638, which protected them 
from the pains and penalties then attached to those 
who declined to attend the Parish Church and to 
communicate at regular periods. 

This Francis Kirkham had an eldest son William, 
who must have been the "William Kirkham, Esq." 
referred to by Lysons, as dying possessed of Pinhoe 
in 1659. He was "aged 3 years" in 1620, and 
appears to have been subsequently knighted. The 
Lysons' remark (vol. i., page 203), that they are 
unable to "carry the descent lower than this 
William," so, it may as well be added, that the 

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The Parish of Ptnhoe. 129 

latter had a son Francis, whose son and heir 
Francis, resided at Bidwell, in the parish of Newton 
St. Cyres, an estate derived from his great grand- 
mother, Elizabeth Roope. 

Sir John Elwill, of Exeter, Knight, created a 
baronet in 1709, probably purchased Pinhoe from 
the latter ; it could not have descended to him by 
inheritance. He resided at Pincourt. His mother 
was of the family of Pole of Exeter, and heir to 
her father. 

The second Sir John Elwill, although he retained 
the Pinhoe property, acquired the Langley estate, 
in the county of Kent, by marriage with " Style," 
and settled there. 

He died without issue, and was succeeded in the 
baronetcy by his younger brother Edmund, whose 
son. Sir John Elwill, fourth baronet, died in 1778, 
when the title became extinct. He left, however, 
an only daughter, who married, first, Mr. Felton 
Harvey, and secondly, Mr. William Freemantle, 
and she was therefore the Mrs. Freemantle who, as 
stated by Lysons, owned the property in 1822. 

Lord Poltimore now owns the Manor of Pinhoe. 

The entry in Domesday Book conclusively proves 
that Pinhoe possessed a church twenty-one years 
after the Norman Conquest, and we may safely 
assume that this church had then existed for some 
years, and on its present site, although there are 
no visible remains of the original fabric. 

The font is certainly Norman, but a late example 
of that style, which prevailed from the reign of 
Edward the Confessor, some think even earlier, 
down to the close of the twelfth century. It is 


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130 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

possible, and even probable, that this font may- 
have been provided for a new church built after the 
Battle of Pinhoe, when the original structure was 
very probably burnt or destroyed, but the existence 
of a church here prior to the Norman Conquest can 
only be a matter of conjecture, supported merely 
by the improbable tradition of the services ren- 
dered by the parish priest on the occasion of the 
memorable contest with the Danes. 

The present structure is of rather early Perpen- 
dicular date, and appears to have been either 
completely rebuilt, or else so altered as to destroy 
every trace of the preceding edifice, at the end of 
the fourteenth or commencement of the fifteenth 

It consists of chancel and nave, opening into a 
north aisle beneath four arches supported upon 
third pointed columns ; a south porch ; and a 
western tower, containing four bells. 

The church is seventy feet long by about twenty- 
eight broad. It was restored in 1880, at an expense 
of ;£ 1 600, and will accommodate about two hundred 

The screen, a more than usually perfect example 
of Perpendicular carving, with the projection of 
the rood loft remaining, has a rich cornice of vine 
leaves and grapes ; the pulpit is of the same 
character, and both appear to be of early fifteenth 
century date and coeval with the present structure. 

One or two ancient benches, of the same period, 
remain, and are still utilised ; others have disap- 
peared within the memory of the present generation. 

The nodi and bosses in the roof — some of them 

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The Parish of Ptnhoe. 131 

are " grotesques " — are also of fifteenth century 
date, and have been well restored. The first bell 
is ancient, the second is dated 1691, the third 1695, 
and the tenor bell has the inscription, " Pres 
[prais] not thyself." 

The old alms-box at the south-western end of 
the building is surmounted by a curious statuette, 
about twenty-four inches high, representing an 
"alms-man" in the costume of Queen Anne's days, 
and can hardly be of earlier date than 1700. It is 
carved in elm. I do not know of a similar instance 
of such a figure in this diocese, and they are ex- 
tremely rare in any part of the country. 

The alms-box itself has the inscription, "Remem- 
ber Ye Poor." Both box and figure were carefully 
restored eleven years ago by Mr. Hems, of Exeter. 

The ancient lock of the south door is also in- 
teresting, contained, as it is, in a case of rough oak. 

The churchyard cross of granite, and of mediaeval 
date, is on the south side of the church. It was 
long buried in the ground, probably to prevent 
desecration, but was discovered some years since, 
disinterred, and re-erected in its present position. 
Near it is a memorial to Edward Wease, yeoman, 
who died "last of Decbr 1584." 

We have seen that Norman William gave the 
<* Church of the Manor of Pinhoe," together with a 
virgate of land, to the "Church of Battle," and 
this virgate of land is still represented by the acre 
and a half of glebe which belongs to the vicar. 

Battle Abbey, as most people know, was the 
stately ecclesiastical foundation established by the 
Conqueror to commemorate his victory at Senlac, 

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132 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

and the Priory or " CeW of St. Nicholas at Exeter 
was appendant to that abbey, since it was formed 
and endowed out of the Devonshire property which 
the founder had given to the Sussex house. 

Consequently the Church of Pinhoe was soon 
transferred to St. Nicholas Priory, and was con- 
firmed to it by the authority of Hubert, Primate of 
Canterbury, and John, Bishop of Exeter, in the 
reign of Richard Coeur de Lion. 

The archiepiscopal confirmation must have been 
later than that by the Bishop of Exeter, since 
Bishop John died in 1191, and Hubert did not 
succeed to the See of Canterbury until 1 193. 

The payment of the annual pension to the Vicar 
of Pinhoe of sixteen shillings, already referred to, 
is shown by the rent-roll of St. Nicholas Priory, 
and amongst the entries of qv^irterly payments 
from Pinhoe to the priory, in the year 1476, occur 
the items, "fi-om Johanne Elyot of Pynne 7/6"; 
likewise "from William Legh two shillings, and 
Joan Page two shillings," which the monks had not 
received, " because it had been paid to the Vicar." 

The "Leghs" (or Lees), must have been long 
resident at Pinhoe, since there is a memorial in the 
chancel in memory of " William and Jane Lee, the 
Sonne and daughter of William Lee, Gentleman, 
who departed this life 165 1." 

The annuity of sixteen shillings (anciently, as I 
have shown, paid quarterly by the priory) is still 
received by the Vicar of Pinhoe. In August, 1269, 
Bishop Bronescombe assigned to the Vicarage 
the sum of five marks fi-om the tithes, and the 
remainder of the profits were given to the rectors. 

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The Parish of Pinhoe. 133 

that is, to the convent, as rectors and patrons of 
the living. 

In the "Taxatio" of 129 1, the Church of "Pynho" 
is valued at ;^3 10^. per annum, and the tenths 
amounted to seven shillings. 

The first recorded vicar is Richard de BoUegh, 
admitted on the third of December, 13 13, to the 
vicarage, which had been then void fi-om the Monday 
after St. Luke's Festival. It is singular to note 
that, according to the Episcopal Registers, the 
Prior and Convent of St. Nicholas, who had pre- 
sented Richard de BoUegh, continued to present 
until sixteen months after their actual suppression, 
since Michael Reynolds was admitted upon their 
nomination to the vicarage, " vacant by the resig- 
nation of the last incumbent," on the sixteenth of 
December, 1537. The last Prior of St. Nicholas 
was William of CuUompton, who surrendered his 
house to the king, on September the eighteenth, 


The "Valor Ecclesiasticus " compiled by order 
of King Henry VIIL, dated the third of November, 
1536, shows that "Thomas Reynolds" was then the 
Vicar of Pinhoe, and that his vicarage was valued 
at;^i4 13^. \d, per annum. 

In 1734, on the eighteenth of December, the Rev. 
Charles Strong being then vicar, the Bishop of 
Exeter, Stephen Weston, granted a license, or 
faculty, for a seat or pew in Pinhoe Church, to 
Mr. Charles Webber, gentleman, as the possessor 
of an estate in the said parish, " called Stoije 
Barton." I presume that Monkeston Barton, other- 
wise Monkaton, is meant. 

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134 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Pinhoe Church is dedicated to St. Michael, and 
the usual tradition relative to churches on high 
ground, and dedicated to this particular saint, is 
current in respect of it, viz,y that eflforts were at 
first made to erect the church in the valley, but 
that his Satanic majesty removed every night the 
stones which had been placed in position during 
the day. At last, in despair, the Lord of the Manor 
sanctioned the erection on the present site on the 
hill, and the labourers were then left to finish their 
work in peace. 

The church is certainly somewhat unfortunately 
situated for the majority of the parishioners, but 
our earliest ancestors frequently preferred to place 
their churches in similar positions as being Tuarer 
to heaven. Not so the Monks, who usually courted 
the shelter of secluded valleys. 

A funeral "hatchment" is, or was, in the church, 
with the arms of the Rev. Joseph Hayne, who 
succeeded George Reynell as vicar of Pinhoe, on 
the first of March, 1662-3. The date of death, as 
noted by Dr. Oliver, is incorrect; he was buried on 
the twentieth of February, 169 1-2, aged eighty. 
He had resigned the living seven years previously. 

The rectorial tithes of Pinhoe are appropriated 
to the Dean and Chapter, and are leased, but the 
patronage is with the Bishop of Exeter, by grant 
fix)m the Crown, and appears to have been con- 
ferred on Bishop Turbeville, by Queen Mary, with 
whom he was a favourite. He collated Philip 
Pawe to the vicarage, on the eleventh of July, 1556, 
on the cession of Michael Reynolds. 

Bishop Hall granted — that is, sold — the presenta- 

Digitized by 


The Parish of Pinhoe. 135 

tion for one turn to John Hayne, merchant, of 
Exeter, who duly presented Roger Jennings, on 
the sixth of August, 1 640. 

Edward Grove is said to have succeeded Richard 
Breerclyffe as vicar, in 1643, and to have been 
deprived, but as he is not mentioned by Walker, in 
the "Sufferings of the Clergy," who had special 
knowledge of this neighbourhood, and died Rector 
of the neighbouring parish of Upton Pyne, I am 
disposed to doubt whether Mr. Grove was ever 
properly instituted. 

After his disappearance there was no fresh col- 
lation until the twenty-fifth of November, 1662, 
when George Reynell succeeded. 

Ezekiel, son of John Hopkins, was baptized at 
Pinhoe, on the fourteenth of December, 1634. He 
took orders, and was Rector of St. Mary Arches, 
Exeter, on the fifteenth of January, 1665-6, and was 
consecrated Bishop of Raphoe in 1674, and sub- 
sequently translated to Deny. He died in the 
parish of St. Mary Aldermanbury, City of London, 
on the nineteenth of June, 1690. 

The parish registers commence — ^burials, twenty- 
fourth of June; baptisms, twenty-seventh of August; 
weddings, twenty-third of November, 1561. The 
earliest are copies of those of his predecessors, 
made by the Rev. Jerome Cheriton, vicar between 
1578 and 1640. 

A license was granted by Bishop Stafford, on the 
twenty-seventh of January, 1400, to Sir William 
Cheney and Cecilia his wife, to have divine service 
performed in the chapel within their manor of Pynho. 
" Episcopal Registers, Stafford," vol. i., fol. 54. 

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136 The Stiburhs of Exeter, 

The Rev. Thomas Reynolds, S.T.P., Vicar of 
Pinhoe from 1530 to 1537, was a Canon of Exeter, 
Warden of Merton College, Oxford, and held other 
important preferments. He was Dean of Bristol 
in 1553, and resigned it for the Deanery of Exeter, 
on the ninth of February, 1554. Queen Mary 
nominated him in 1558 to the See of Hereford, but 
the nomination was cancelled by Queen Elizabeth, 
and Dr. Reynolds was never consecrated. He 
refused to submit to the change of religion, and 
was committed to the Marshalsea, where he died, 
on the twenty-fourth of November, 1559. 

I may mention that King Henry VIII. presented 
him to the Rectory of " Pitt Portion," in Tiverton 
Church, on the ninth of April, 1541, but his name 
is not included in the list of rectors printed in the 
late Col. Harding's "History of Tiverton." He 
was a son of Richard Reynolds or Rainolds, of 
Pinhoe, whose ancestors had long resided in the 

Dr. Reynolds had resigned Pinhoe in favour of 
the Rev. " Michael Reynolds," who I presume was 
a brother, in 1537, when the living had been 
charged in his favour with an annuity of £,\ per 

The dean's undoubted younger brother, Richard 
Reynolds, was " a substantial farmer " of Pinhoe, 
where his six sons were bom. 

Hierom, the eldest of them, was Fellow and 
Tutor of Corpus Christi College, Oxford. 

William, the second, was educated at Winchester, 
and was subsequently Fellow of New College. 

Of John, the third, I shall speak presently. 

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The Parish of Ptnhoe, 137 

Edmund, the fourth, was also a Fellow of Corpus, 
but retired to Gloucester Hall, on account of his 
religious convictions, where he was some time 

James, the fifth son, was a Fellow of Exeter 
College ; whilst Nicholas, the youngest son, re- 
mained at Pinhoe and farmed the land he lived on, 
as his ancestors had done. 

His son William, however, left this county, and 
settled at Cassington, near Woodstock, where I 
find him described as a "gentleman." He probably 
inherited the money of his unmarried University 
uncles. Of these, Edmund is especially mentioned 
as having died a wealthy man. 

John Reynolds, third son of Richard, and nephew 
of the Dean of Exeter, was born at Pinhoe in 1549. 
He was entered at Merton in 1562, aged thirteen, 
and obtained a scholarship at Corpus in the follow- 
ing year. In 1598 he became Dean of Lincoln, 
which he subsequently resigned to become Presi- 
dent of Corpus. Queen Elizabeth offered him a 
bishopric, which he declined. 

He was at first ardently devoted to the Romish 
doctrine, whilst his brother William was as great 
a Reformer, and the two argued the differences 
between them so strenuously that the position was 
completely changed. Some say that the argument 
was not with William, but with Edmund Reynolds, 
who resigned his fellowship at Corpus in conse- 
quence of his change of views. 

Anyway, it is certain that Dr. John Reynolds 
abandoned his early views and became one of the 
leading Puritans of his time. Some consider that 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

138 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

he was for years the actual leader of the " Puritan 

He distinguished himself g^reatly at the Hampton 
Court Conference in 1603, where he suggested the 
necessity of the new translation of the Bible, in 
which he was afterwards actively engaged. He 
died on the twenty-first of May, 1603, and was 
buried in the inner chapel of Corpus, where a 
monument, surmounted by his bust, was erected to 
his memory. 

The Rev. John Conybeare became Vicar of 
Pinhoe on the seventeenth of November, 1684, and 
held the living until his death, on the twenty-ninth 
of November, 1 706. Dr. Oliver notes (Ecc. Antiq., 
ii., 128) that "A tomb-stone in the churchyard 
informs us that Revd John Conybeare was Chaplain 
to the Earl of Essex and died in 1740, aged 72." 
He wonders if this " can be his son r" 

It is rather extraordinary that the learned doctor, 
should have overlooked the career of the vicar's 
undoubted son John, as it is clear he must have 
done, when he asked such a question. For even 
supposing that the Vicar of Pinhoe had two sons 
who were both called John — a by no means unusual 
occurrence — it is singular that Dr. Oliver did not 
remark upon the fact that one of these sons was a 

I do not pretend to say who the "Chaplain to the 
Earl of Essex" may have been — possibly a nephew 
of the vicar's, whose son John was born at Pinhoe 
on the thirty-first of January, 1691-2, and was 
educated at Tiverton. He was subsequently Rector 
of Exeter College, which he resigned for the Dean- 

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The Parish of Pinhoe, 139 

ery of Christchurch on the twenty-ninth of January, 
1732-3. Previously to this he had been Rector of 
St. Clement's, Oxford, and one of His Majesty's 
preachers at Whitehall. In 1750, upon the trans- 
lation of Dr. Butler to Durham, he became Bishop 
of Bristol. Whilst at Oxford he was tutor to 
Thomas Seeker, afterwards Archbishop of Canter- 
bury. He died on the thirteenth of July, 1755, a 
poor man, for his elevation to the Episcopate of 
Bristol had injured rather than improved his posi- 

Two volumes of his sermons were published 
after his death, and 4,600 copies were subscribed 
for by his friends, as an attempted provision for his 

The Parish of Pinhoe has participation in the 
gift of Grace Bamfield, who, by her will, dated the 
twenty-seventh of February, 1652, gave ;£i2o. To 
this bequest William Lee added £20^ and James 
Taylor another ;^20, which was fiirther augmented 
by the contributions of William Lee, deceased, ;£io, 
Richard Lee, ;^5, and by a sum of ;^5 added by the 

With this money an estate in the Parish of 
Broadclist was purchased, the rents of which, 
according to the will of the donor, were to be ex- 
pended in clothing, to be distributed, five-ninths to 
the poor of Pinhoe, and the remainder, in equal por- 
tions, to the poor of Stoke Canon and Thorverton. 

Grace Bamfield was, I believe, a daughter of 
William Lee, of Pinhoe, whose daughter Jane was 
buried there in 1651. She was the widow of 
Edward Bamfield, of Stoke Canon, whose will was 

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I40 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

proved at Exeter on the eighteenth of April, 1645, 
and he was the fifth son of Richard Bamfield, of 
Poltimore, whose name is frequently thus written. 

Humphry Wilcocks, by will dated the third of 
January, 1686, gave to the feoffees of the above 
lands two fields in Pinhoe, which he had purchased 
of Dorothy and Peter Bigglestone, the rents to be 
distributed yearly amongst poor people of sixty 
years of age or upwards. 

John Sanders, by will dated in 1729, gave to the 
feoffees of the above lands thirty shillings a year, 
payable out of " The Downs," to be distributed in 
bread on the first Sunday in every month, to six 
poor people having no parochial relief. 

Sir John Elwill, Bart., gave forty shillings a year, 
to issue from his estates in Pinhoe, for teaching 
eight poor children of the parish to read. 

John Land, innkeeper, of Exeter, by his will 
dated the eighth of January, 181 7, gave ;^200 to 
the vicar and churchwardens, to be laid out in the 
purchase of stock, the interest to be divided annu- 
ally amongst the poor generally, at the discretion 
of the vicar and churchwardens. 

In conclusion, I may add a few words as to the 
funeral of this popular and venerable Exeter citi- 
zen, who had been the landlord of the London Inn 
at Exeter for more than half a century. He was 
buried at Pinhoe but a few days after he had dated 
his will, in 181 7. 

His inn had been long the rendezvous of the 
several coaches which then formed the only means 
of communication between London and Plymouth. 
The funeral procession of the old landlord was 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Pinhoe. 141 

nearly a quarter of a mile in length, and included 
eight stage-coaches, fully horsed and equipped, 
over twenty post-chaises, and some two hundred 
mourners, who followed on horseback. 

Probably the inhabitants of this usually quiet 
village had never had such an excitement, as 
this funeral afforded them, since the date of that 
memorable incident with which I commenced my 
account of their pleasant little parish, when — 

" All day long the tide of battle rolled." 

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T^HE Parish of St. Thomas the Apostle, as it is 
^ usually but incorrectly designated, the Church 
having been dedicated in memory of St. Thomas k 
Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, ought more 
properly to be known as the Parish of Cowick. 

It is situated in the ancient Deanery of Kenne, 
but was transferred by the last Bishop of Exeter 
(now Bishop of London), to that of " Christianity," 
for the sake of convenience. 

It included the villages of Exwick and Oldridge, 
but the first has of late years been separated firom 
it, and forms a distinct parish. 

St. Thomas is so close to Exeter, from which it 
is only divided by Exe Bridge, that it seems to 
form a portion of the city, but it is, and always 
has been, quite outside the city government, is 
strictly a suburban parish, and a portion of the 
County of Devon. It now includes two thousand 
nine hundred and twenty one acres of land, and 
had, in 1881, five thousand five hundred and forty- 
one parishioners. 

. When Edward the Confessor ruled over England, 
the manor of " Coic " was the property of the 
Saxon Ailmar. At the Conquest, it passed into 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of St. Thomas. 143 

the hands of Baldwin, Sheriff of Devon, and 
brother of Richard de Redvers, first Earl of Devon 
under Norman rule. 

I have so fiilly referred previously to these 
powerful personages, that I need not repeat any 
particulars as to their descent or history. It will 
be sufficient for me to say that when Baldwin 
became the owner of " Coic " or Cowick, it paid 
tax for one hide of land. 

Of this, Baldwin had half a hide in demesne, and 
two ploughs, and the villeins had another half 
hide, and six ploughs. 

There were resident on the manor, eight villeins, 
three cottagers, and two serfs; and the lord had 
there one pack-horse, three beasts, and forty sheep. 

There was a mill which rendered ten shillings 
yearly, three acres of wood, and three acres of 
meadow, and it was worth annually forty shillings 
(in the Exchequer Domesday, thirty shillings), and 
in 1066, the property appears to have been worth 
only twenty shillings. 

The above description of the property is, of 
course, from Domesday, but it is shown by another 
record that in the reign of Edward II., two centuries 
later, the Manor of Cowick included seventy acres 
of arable land, twelve of meadow, and six of wood, 
two of garden, and two mills, one of the latter 
being at Exwick. 

The rent roll from this property at the Refor- 
mation, as shown by the "Valor" of 1534, amounted 
to ;^39 5^. M. a year. 

The Manors of Cowick and "Essoic" (Exwick) 
— the latter had been in Saxon times owned by 

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144 The Svburbs of Exeter, 

Eurenacre, and had been taxed for one hide of 
land, three acres of meadow, three acres of coppice, 
fifty acres of pasture, and a mill, in all worth 
thirty shillings per annum — ^were given by Baldwin, 
the Sheriff, to his son William. 

Nothing can be more complicated or contradictory 
than the hitherto published statements as to this 
William. By some, under the name of William of 
Avenel, he has been made the husband of his own 
sister, Emma ; by others, his son Ralph, has been 
declared to have been married to Alice, daughter of 
another of his sisters, Adelicia, who, it has been 
conclusively ascertained, never had a daughter 
at all. 

A reference to the pedigrees as put forth by 
Dugdale and his copyistSy and which had their origin 
in the mendacious records of the Monks of Ford, 
will explain the discrepancies in the descent. I 
can only submit the facts I have myself ascertained, 
and which, I believe, I can clearly substantiate. 

This William, "son of Baldwin," at one time 
filled the office of Sheriff of Devon, probably only 
in an acting capacity (since his brother Richard 
and his sister Adeliza, both held it successively, as 
of hereditary right), in the reign of William Rufus. 

This is shown by a deed of that monarch in 
connection with the Church of St. Olave, Exeter, 
addressed to "William, the Sheriff, son of Baldwin, 
and to all his barons, servants, etc., in Devenescire, 
greeting," etc. 

That William Fitz-Baldwin was identical with 
the William of Avenel, who has been said over 
and over again to have married Emma, youngest 

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The Parish of St. Thomas. 145 

daughter of Baldwin, the sheriff, and that he was 
the father of Ralph Avenel, is abundantly proved 
by the deed of his grandson William Avenel, 
executed between the years 1142 and 1155, and to 
which I shall have to refer more particularly in my 
account of the parish of Alphington. 

He there mentions certain land which had been 
given by "Ralph his father," and by "Adeliza" 
"his fathers aunt on the father's side'* The said 
Adeliza having been elder sister of Emma, and* 
also sister of the said William Fitz-Baldwin de 

There was naturally litigation before these Ave- 
nels submitted quietly to the descent of the Barony 
of Okehampton in the family of Abrincis, but the 
various accounts and explanations of that litiga- 
tion, hitherto, have been ridiculously fabulous. 

William Fitz-Baldwin de Avenel gave his manors 
of Cowick and Exwick, probably between the years 
1087 and 1 100, to the Abbot and Convent of Bee, 
in Normandy, which had been founded by Herlouin, 
the son of Ansgot and Heloysa his wife, upon his 
own estate, near the little rivers Bee and La Rive, 
eighteen miles south-west of Rouen. 

The gift of this Devonshire property to the 
Norman abbey is proved by the confirmation of it 
to them by King Henry II. : " In England Cuwic 
and Exewic by gift of William Fitz-Baldwin." 

The first Abbot of Bee, who was the founder 
himself, died in August, 1073. His Prior had been 
Lanfranc, subsequently Abbot of St. Stephen's, 
Caen, and who was consecrated Archbishop of 
Canterbury \% 1070. 


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146 The Suhtirhs of Exeter. 

Herlouin was succeeded in the Abbey of Bee by 
(St.) Anselme, who was also in later times the 
English Primate at Canterbury, and occupied the 
archiepiscopal throne from 1093 to 1109. 

So we need not go far for a reason, to account for 
the erection of Cowick Priory, which was simply a 
dependency of the Norman Abbey of Bee, '* a 
separate, but subordinate " foundation. 

Cowick Priory occupied the ground between the 
river and Okehampton Street, and stood directly 
opposite the Bonhay, on about two acres of land. 
A portion of the boundary wall is still standing*, 
close to the river. 

Many misleading statements have been put for- 
ward in print, especially in recent years, as to the 
exact situation of this venerable establishment. 
Jenkins, I fear, is originally responsible for most 
of them, since he states positively (" History of 
Exeter," p. 430) that the priory stood " south-west 
from Bowhill," by which he evidently means 
Cowick Barton, as he goes on to describe the 

The situation of the priory (which by an in- 
quisition as to its extents, dated Tuesday after the 
Feast of the Epiphany, 1324-5, is shown " to have 
stood in the sanctuary of its church, and to have 
extended beyond the church'') is abundantly proved 
by a brief of King Henry VI., addressed to the 
Bishop of Exeter, Edmund Lacy, and dated Reading 
Abbey, January the twentieth, 1439-40, in which it 
is stated that "a large portion of the possessions 
of the priory is close to a certain great river called 
Exe, and has been inundated by the heavy floods 

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The Parish of SL Thomas. 147 

which have come down of late years, and the 
Church and Cloister of the Priory and the greater 
part of the dwellings are so weak and damp that 
most of them will very likely fall, unless immediate 
action is taken to repair them." 

The priory had then been seized by the Crown 
as alien, and the prior, William Donnebant, whose 
revenues had been suspended, had been charged 
with neglect, " by permitting the priory church, 
the chancel, the cloisters, the principal chamber, 
the kitchen, the great gateway, the grange, and 
the bakehouse, to go to decay." 

His predecessor had been similarly accused of 
** waste " in his priory, by permitting a certain 
chamber called "ye Erles Chamber" to be ruinous; 
and at Exwick, "parcel of the same priory," he 
had allowed a chamber, a grange, and a mill, to 
go to decay through defective roofs. 

The Crown so constantly assumed and leased the 
property during wars with France, that the priors 
of Cowick had very frequently no income whatever 
with which to execute necessary repairs to their 
extensive buildings, not only on the banks of the 
Exe, but also at Exwick and Cowick, where their 
"Barton house" stood, as its successor does now. 

King Henry VI., however, was pleased to restore 
the income, to prevent the ruin of the monastic 
buildings, but two years afterwards, on Palm 
Sunday, 1442, a disastrous fire occurred, which 
destroyed buildings and ftimiture to the extent of 
over £iT]y a very large sum in those days. 

From this last blow Cowick Priory appears never 
to have recovered. The community struggled on 

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148 The Stiburbs of Exeter, 

for a year or two, but in 1451, the then Prior, 
Robert de Rouen, apparently in despair of wit- 
nessing "better times," surrendered his house to 
the same King, Henry VI., who at once left the 
buildings* to their fate, and appropriated the reve- 
nues towards the maintenance of his new foundation 
at Eton. It is therefore not at all wonderful that 
but very few and unsatisfactory vestiges of Cowick 
Priory are to be found to-day. 

A list of the Priors of Cowick, from Walter, who 
occurs in the time of Bishop John (the Chaunter) 
of Exeter, 1186-1191, may be found in .Oliver's 
" Monasticon of the Diocese." 

That the Courtenays for many generations were 
patrons and benefactors of Cowick Priory is quite 
certain ; indeed, the lands were actually held from 
them in alms, as parcel of the Barony of Okehamp- 
ton, as shown by the "Hundred Roll." That they 
had accommodation within its walls seems also to 
be proved by the reference to "ye Erles Chamber," 
which had been permitted at one time "to go to 

They were not, however, descendants of the 
original founder, but of his sister Emma, through 
her marriage with William de Abrincis. Adeliza, 
"Lady of Okehampton," is said to have nominated 
"her nephew," Ralph Avenel, to succeed her in 
that barony. This is more than probable, but he 
was not her nephew through her sister Emma, but 
through her brother William, as I have explained 

He seems, however, to have been turned out of 
the Okehampton property upon a writ of eject- 

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The Parish of St Thomas. 149 

ment, and thus that barony came to the house of 
Abrincis ; but the Avenels long flourished at 
Sheepwash, and latteriy at Loxbeare, where the 
name did not finally become extinct until the reign 
of Henry VI., when a daughter brought the Manor 
of Loxbeare to Trowbridge. 

Emma, sister of William Fitz-Baldwin, de Ave- 
nel (founder of Co wick Priory), was the great- 
grandmother of Avis D'Aincourt, wife of William, 
son of Reginald Courtenay by his first wife, 
Matilda de Donjon. 

William and Avis were the father and mother 
of Robert Courtenay, who of late years, as I have 
already stated, has been erroneously considered to 
have been the son, instead of grandson, of Regi- 
nald Courtenay. 

But Avis DAincourt is actually mentioned in 
the Exchequer Rolls as " widow of William Cour- 
tenay," and Robert Courtenay refers to his mother 
" Avis " in his deed to the burgesses of Okehamp- 
ton, dated in 1209. 

A "lying" inscription by the careless or unscru- 
pulous monks of " Ford " may have originated 
this extraordinary blunder, which seems to have 
been too readily adopted by Ezra Cleaveland, and 
has been universally followed since his time. 

Robert Courtenay was Lord of Okehampton in 
right of his mother Avis, and he married Mary, 
daughter of William de Vernon, sixth Earl of 
Devon of the Redvers family, who, by the way, 
according to the generally received but untrust- 
worthy pedigree of Redvers, would have lived two 
generations before him. 

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150 The Stiburhs of Exeter. 

When it is remembered how very easily ana- 
chronisms of this nature may be exposed and 
refuted by a little careful examination of dates or 
contemporary records, it seems wonderful that such 
errors should have prevailed so long, or that they 
should have been ever perpetrated at all. Sir 
William Dugdale was a very celebrated man in 
his day, but, like many others, he attempted too 
mucky and is consequently responsible for many 
errors which he was never able to rectify, and to 
which his copyists, and their plagiarists, have 
added many more. 

Robert Courtenay's grandson. Sir Hugh de 
Courtenay, was buried in the priory church. He 
resided at Colcombe Castle, but, having quarrelled 
with the monks of Ford, chose Cowick for his place 
of interment. 

His death occurred on the twenty-eighth of 
February, 1291, and his actual burial is proved by 
the fact that an indulgence of forty days was 
granted. by Bishop Bitton of Exeter, by his deed 
dated at Clist, fourth of the Kalends of November, 
1300 (twenty-ninth of October), for prayers recited 
" for the soul of Sir Hugh Courtenay, formerly 
Knight, whose body is buried in the priory of 
Cowick, and for his children John, Alice, and 
Robert, who are interred at Colyton." 

Sir Hugh Courtenay's widow, Alianore, daughter 
of Hugh, Lord Despenser, died in I-ondon on the 
twenty-sixth of September, 1328, and her body is 
said to have been brought down to Exeter and 
placed by that of her husband. 

Agnes, daughter of Lord St. John of Basing, 

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The Parish of St, Thomas. 151 

and first Countess of Devon of the Courtenay line, 
was buried "near" her husband's relatives. She 
died at Tiverton, on the eleventh of June, 1340. 

Her husband only survived her for the short 
space of six months. The long litigation, which, 
since the death of Isabella de Fortibus, in 1283, had 
been maintained by the other kinsfolk of the 
Redvers family as to the right of succession to the 
title, had been terminated in his favour on the 
twenty-second of February, 1335, by virtue of a 
peremptory order from the Crown, he having 
claimed the Earldom as right heir of line of 
William de Vernon de Redvers, sixth Earl, whose 
daughter and co-heir, Mary de Redvers, had been 
his great-grandmother. 

His lordship died at Tiverton Castle on Decem- 
ber the twenty-third, 1340, and was buried on 
the following fifth of February. The corpse was 
lodged in Exeter Cathedral the night previously, 
where a service was first performed, and, after mass 
on the following morning, the long procession 
wended its way through Fore Street, and the west 
quarter, and emerging through the western gate of 
the city, crossed Exe river, and proceeded to the 
old Priory, on its further bank. 

There the deceased nobleman was laid, by his 
wife Agnes, and by his father, and, possibly, by his 
mother, '* In the Choir of the Conventual Church," 
and Bishop Grandisson said the funeral service, 
and preached from the text. First Book of Chroni- 
cles, xxix. 2% — " He died in a good old age, full of 
riches and honour." He was the last of the Cour- 
tenays who was buried at Cowick. 

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152 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

As we read in the "Monasticon of the Diocese" — 
"Until October the fifteenth, 1261, the inhabitants 
of Cowick had no parish priest to officiate for them, 
but used to attend Divine service in the nave of the 
Conventual Church of St. Andrew." 

On the date mentioned by Dr. Oliver, the Prior 
of Cowick appears to have presented a certain 
priest, called " Henry," for institution by Bishop 
Bronescombe, because the rapidly increasing popu- 
lation then required constant and special clerical 

The chapel in which the new parish priest was to 
officiate was then completed, but it is certain that its 
construction had been undertaken at least two years 
previously, because in a deed dated February the 
fourteenth, 1259, there is mention of " a light for the 
Blessed Mary in the Chapel of St. Thomas, the 
Martyr," which is described, in another document 
of the same date, as being situated at the end of 
Exe Bridge. 

In this chapel, Henry, and his successors, con- 
tinued to minister for the long period of one hundred 
and fifty-one years, all parochial privileges being- 
attached to it, excepting the right of burial, which 
the situation of the chapel, on the bridge, the sur- 
rounding ground being quite close to the river, 
rendered impossible. 

Burials were to take place, as heretofore, in the 
cemetery attached to the Chapel of St. Michael, 
situated without the boundaries of the Priory. 

The chapel on Exe Bridge was at last swept away 
by a flood, and, as shewn by Bishop Stafford's 
Register, was entirely destroyed, so then by the 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of St. Thomas, 153 

joint efforts of the Prior of Cowick, and of such 
notable parishioners as Holland, Floyer, and others, 
together with the vicar, John Alkebarwe, a fresh site 
was procured from the monks, called "Pyryhay," 
''far distant from the river and its inundations," and 
there a new church was erected in honour of God, and 
in memory of the same saint to which its predecessor 
had been dedicated, St. Thomas, Archbishop of Can- 
terbury, and it was consecrated on the fourteenth of 
October, 141 2. 

A burial-ground was attached to the new church, 
and by the covenant with the bishop, the parish- 
ioners in future were to be interred in it, or else, for 
special reasons, within the church, unless any, from 
time to time particularly desired to be buried in 
the ancient cemetery of St. Michael, where their 
ancestors had been laid from time immemorial, and 
the parishioners were enjoined to keep up the graves, 
ditches, and walls of the old chapel and graveyard. 

The church built in Pyryhay, and consecrated, 
as we have seen, in 141 2, originally appears to 
have consisted of chancel, nave, aisle, and western 
tower. It was practically rebuilt in 1656, when, 
from its situation so close to the city, it had natu- 
rally become dilapidated during the great rebellion, 
since it had more than once accommodated the 
troops of either side ; but it was at last almost com- 
pletely ruined by fire. At the commencement of 
this century it consisted of chancel, nave, north and 
south aisles, and the tower was crowned with a 
spire and contained six bells, all cast in 1789 out 
of a former peal of five. 

The church was again enlarged and repaired 

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154 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

between the years 1821-29, and was re-seated and 
restored internally some twenty years ago. 

After the siege of Exeter in 1549, consequent 
upon the rebellion of that year in connection with 
the change of ritual, Lord Russell, the King's 
general, and patron of St. Thomas, hanged the 
Rev. John Welsh, the Vicar, upon the tower of his 
church. The execution was entrusted to Bernard 
Duffield, Lord Russell's steward. The vicar, having 
been brought to the foot of the tower, was drawn 
to the top by a rope, and there hanged in chains 
upon a gallows which had been erected on its 
summit. He was arrayed in his vestments, and a 
holy-water bucket, a sprinkle, a sacring bell, and 
a pair of beads, were suspended around him. 
According to the barbarous custom of those days,, 
the body was tarred over, and remained suspended 
from the gallows during the remainder of the reign 
of Edward VI., and until the accession of Queen 

This vicar seems to have taken a very active 
part in the rebellion, although his worst enemies 
admit that he was possessed of many amiable 
qualities, and seems to have used his influence 
with the rebels to prevent the burning of the city, 
which they wished much to attempt ; however, he 
seems to have assented to the execution of a 
Protestant called Kingwell, who was hanged upon 
a tree in Exe Island, and the vicar, therefore, was 
put to death in retaliation. 

The Barton of Cowick, which was the farm of 
the priory, was and is situated at the top of the 
fields still known as Cowick Fields, and on high 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of St. Thomas. 155 

ground overlooking the city. It is close to the 
lane which leads from Alphington Cross to the 
head of Cowick Street; and the "easements" or 
paths which lead from Cowick Street through the 
fields to this property are more than once men- 
tioned in ancient records, and until a comparatively 
recent period were known as " The Monks' Walk/* 

The "barton" itself is referred to in the "Valor 
Ecclesiasticus " of Henry VIII., and the then value 
of this estate was £t,<^ 5^. 2>d. per annum, a very 
considerable sum, but, as may still be seen by 
anyone acquainted with the character of the pro- 
perty, the ground must have always commanded a 
high rental. 

Eastward of the present house stood the ancient 
chapel of St. Michael, and below this chapel, on 
the ground sloping towards Exeter, was the old 
cemetery attached to this chapel, in which the 
inhabitants of the parish had been buried from 
"time immemorial" up to the dedication of the 
new church and churchyard in Pyryhay, in 141 2. 

I have been the more particular as to this de- 
scription, because it has been recently suggested 
that the priory itself stood here — an evident im- 
possibility, in the face of the existing original 
records I have referred to above, and which prove 
conclusively that the latter was " close to the river." 

The existence of a large graveyard at Cowick 
Barton — all traditions as to the origin of which 
had been long lost — was amply proved many years 
ago ; numbers of bones and skeletons were then 
turned up there, and although various theories were 
adduced to account for these remains, all were very 

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156 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

wide of the mark. It was at length admitted that 
they indicated the existence of a cemetery there at 
a period " anterior, at all events, to the reign of 
Charles II." 

But all reasonable doubts were set at rest in 
1887, when, at the top of this cemetery, the founda- 
tions of the old Chapel of St. Michael, on the hill 
— as chapels dedicated to this saint usually stood — 
were discovered and laid open. On the ninth of 
Augnst, 1887, some workmen were taking a drain, 
from Cowick Barton House, across the field, when 
they lighted upon a stone coffin, the cover coped 
and ornamented with an early type of cross, known 
in heraldry as a cross recercel6e, extending the 
whole length of it. Upon being opened it was 
found to contain a skeleton, the general form of 
which disappeared upon exposure to the air, leav- 
ing only a few bones. 

The architect engaged in the operations which 
led to the discovery, and with whom I at once 
placed myself in communication, Mr. Fellowes 
Prynne, at once caused a careful examination to be 
made of the surrounding ground, when he found 
that his labourers had actually come upon the site 
of a small ancient ecclesiastical building, and that 
they had lighted upon a spot which must have 
been almost the centre of the sanctuary, the floor of 
which was discovered two feet two inches below the 
present surface. 

The architect considers the date of the coffin to 
be of the second half of the thirteenth century. 
Directly eastward of the walled grave which con- 
tained this coffin was another walled grave, with 

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The Parish of St Thomas, 157 

similar vaults on either side ; all three of these con- 
tained skeletons, and in the grave on the south side 
a chalice was found. There were also the remains 
of graves, with bones in them, on the north and 
south western sides of the stone coffin, which there- 
fore appears, as I have said, to have been laid in 
the centre of the chancel. 

So that, in all, six graves were opened, one of 
these contained a coffin inscribed with a cross, 
another a chalice. The Priors of Cowick, would 
have been buried in their conventual church, as it 
is known their patrons, the Courtenays, were, con- 
sequently it may be assumed that these graves were 
the last resting places of the ancient priests of the 
Chapel of St. Thomas on the bridge, in which, as 
we have seen, it was not only impossible, but 
illegal, to bury, and the parochial clergy were 
usually buried in their chancels. 

I may say, that in addition to the old cemetery, 
which extends around this curiously discovered site, 
the excavators proved that the building could not 
have been a church of any importance, since there 
were no traces of arcading, or of any elaborate 
details, save the rich tiled flooring, of which many 
fragments have been preserved. The only piece of 
stone moulding that was unearthed, was a small 
piece of string course a few inches long. The tiles, 
although very fragmentary, had been once exces- 
sively handsome ; on one of these are the five 
chevronels, similar to those on the Courtenay tomb 
in Exeter Cathedral, and which indicate the second 
marriage of Reginald de Courtenay, with Matilda 
Fitz-Ede, otherwise Abrincis. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

158 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Then there are the Three Lions of England on 
another, which refer to the marriage of Hugh de 
Courtenay, son of the Earl buried at Cowick, with 
Margaret de Bohun. This marriage took place on 
the last day of August, 1325, and the Earl died in 
1377. The existence of these arms, and the piece 
of string course, which is of the fourteenth century 
type, would point to the conclusion that the Chapel 
of St. Michael was "re-edified" by the second Earl 
of Devon, perhaps in memory of his father and 

Upon the surrender of Cowick Priory to Henry 
VI., that King appropriated the revenues, as I 
have said, to Eton College. A few years afterwards 
Edward IV. cancelled this donation, and gave all 
the property to the Abbey of Tavistock, and with 
that wealthy community it remained until the 

Subsequently to its union with Tavistock, Cowick 
Priory ceased to be of any importance in a monastic 
sense. Dr. Oliver considers that a few religious 
men may have resided amidst its ruins, but there 
were no further admissions of any Priors, as proved 
by the silence, about such, of the Episcopal Regis- 
ters. The Abbot of Tavistock may, however, have 
appointed " Superiors" from time to time, removable 
at his will, and Browne Willis says that "John 
Carter was the last Prior of Cowick, a cell to 

After the dissolution, Henry VIII. included the 
whole of the Cowick property in his very liberal 
grant to Lord Russell. "Cowick, with its members, 
Exwyck, Barley, Olderiggs, Cobelynche, Whympell 

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The Parish of SL Thomas, 159 

(which had been the gift to Co wick of the Courtenays) 
and Woodemarston, then produced an inclusive 
rental of £^^ i6s. j^d. per annum. 

The present house at Cowick Barton, which is a 
typical Tudor residence, appears to have been 
erected by Lord Russell, who was the fourth of 
the sixteen guardians of Edward VI., during his 
minority. The house must have been erected 
between the years 1539 and 1547. That is to say, 
between the time Lord Russell became the owner 
of the property, and the death of Henry VIII. , 
because the Arms of Edward VI. as Prince of 
Wales — the ostrich feather, badge, and the initial 
letters " E. P." — still remain there in stained glass. 

Cowick remained in the Russell family for some 
generations, until, in 1630, Francis, Earl of Bedford, 
became the principal undertaker in the work of 
draining the Fen lands in Northampton, and the 
adjoining counties, usually known as " The Bedford 
Levels," and, perhaps to raise money for this 
expensive work, the St. Thomas, or Cowick, pro- 
perty was sold in or about 1641, when Barley and 
Franklyn changed hands. 

The Pate family seem to have become the owners 
of Cowick Barton, with its interesting archaeologi- 
cal remains, above referred to. Robert Pate was 
certainly its owner on February the eighth, 1677, 
when he made his will. He left a son, Robert Pate, 
of the Middle Temple, Barrister-at-law, Susannah, 
and Mary, who married Mr. Brooking. 

Robert Pate, the younger, describes himself as of 
" Cowick House " in his own will, the sixteenth of 
May, 1687. He gives his messuages, lands, and 

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i6o The Stdmrbs of Exeter. 

tenements to his sisters, above mentioned, in equal 

The whole subsequently passed to Mrs. Prideaux, 
the daughter of Mary Brooking, who left it to her 
daughter, Mrs. Speke, and her daughter devised it to 
Mr. James White, who was the owner in 1830, and 
from him it has descended to the present owner, 
Mr. White-Abbott, of Exmouth, who has recently 
had this interesting old Barton, or rather. Manor, 
house carefully repaired and restored. It extends 
around three sides of a quadrangle, and, from its 
arrangement and general appearance, it was 
doubtless an occasional residence of the first Lord 
Russell, as it was evidently erected with that object. 

The Manor of Cowick was purchased of the 
Earl of Bedford, in 1639, by William Gould, grand- 
son of Edward Gould, of Staverton, in this county. 

This William Gould was baptized in the parish 
church of St. Thomas, on the fourteenth of Sep- 
tember, 1 615. He was a Colonel of Horse during 
the Civil War, and Governor of Plymouth, where 
he was buried on the ninth of July, 1644. 

His great-grandson, William Gould, of Downes, 
in the parish of Crediton, left two daughters, 
co-heirs, and the eldest of these, Elizabeth, brought 
the Manor of Cowick into the family of BuUer by 
her marriage with James BuUer, of Morval. 

Sir Redvers BuUer, v.C, k.c.b., is now Lord of 
the Manor of Cowick, and patron of the Vicarage of 
St. Thomas. 

The Ancient Priory of St. Mary De Marisco, 
situated partly in St. Thomas, will be noticed sub- 
sequently in the history of the parish of Alphington. 

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The Parish of St. 'Ihomas. i6i 

Hayes Barton was purchased by John Petre, 
Collector of Customs, of Exeter, second son of 
John Petre, of Tor-Bryan, and the brother of Sir 
William Petre, " Principal Secretary of State," the 
ancestor of Lord Petre. 

John Petre left this property to his son, William 
Petre, who devised it to his son. Sir George Petre, 
of Tor Newton, in the said parish of Tor Bryan, 
Kt., by whom it was sold in the reign of James I., 
to William Gould, son and heir of Edward Gould, 
of Staverton, already mentioned, and from him it 
descended, with Cowick, to the BuUers. 

Floyer Hayes, the ancient residence of the 
family of Floyer, is referred to in a Latin note to 
the Heralds' Visitation of Devon of 1564, preserved 
at the College of Arms: "The Manor of Hayes 
lies on the west side of the River Exe, and is held 
from the Earl of Devon by service, that whenever 
the Earl may come to Exe Island to fish, or other- 
wise enjoy himself, then the lord, or proprietor, of 
this manor, in decent habit or apparel, should 
attend him, with a mantle upon his shoulders, and 
a silver cup filled with wine in his hands, and 
should offer the same to the said Earl to drink/' 

This ancient mansion, long since destroyed, is 
shown in the old map of the City of Exeter, 
reproduced in Lysons' " Magna Britannia," Vol. ii., 
p. 178. It stood nearly in a line with "Snayle 
Tower," and on the west side of the river, and 
must have been very near the ancient priory of 
Cowick, but a little to the south-west of it. 

The house appears as a building of very con- 
siderable size, and is surrounded by a strong wall, 



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1 62 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

entered beneath a massive circular arched gate- 

The first of the Floyers, mentioned in their pedi- 
grees, is Richard, who was lord of this manor, 
temp. Henry II. 

From him, the line is continued to "Anthony 
Floyer, of Floyer Hayes," who died on the twenty- 
eighth of November, 1608. His son and heir, 
Anthony Floyer, shown by the Inquisition after his 
father s death, to have been then twelve years old, 
sold " Floyer Hayes " to Henry Gould, brother of 
the aforesaid Edward Gould, of Staverton, and who 
afterwards purchased Lew Trenchard. 

The Floyers then removed into Dorsetshire, the 
said Anthony having acquired property there in 
right of his mother, Anne, daughter and co-heir of 
Nicholas Martyn of Athelhampton. 

Anthony's descendant, William Floyer, of Athel- 
hampton, Dorsetshire, baptized at Trusham, in this 
county, in 1726, was the father of John Gould Floyer, 
of Kelsby, Lincolnshire, who died in 1841, and the 
latter was the grandfather of Augustus Wadhara 
Floyer, of Martyn Hall, county Lincoln, whose 
children are Eric, George, and Sydenham Floyer, 
the last born in 1864. So that this ancient family 
still flourishes. 

The original grant of the Manor of Floyer Hayes, 
which was parcel of the Barony of Okehampton, 
was confirmed by Robert Fitz-Ede, natural son 
of Henry I., and second husband of Matilda 
D' Aincourt, nee Abrincis, Baroness of Okehampton 
in her own right, to Richard, the son of Nicholas 
Floyer, whose grandfather, "Richard, the son of 

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The Parish of St. Thomas, 163 

Floier," had held it long before, by knight's service, 
and by the above recited obligation. 

It is of course well known that the Barony of 
Okehampton came to the Courtenays, Earls of 
Devon, in right of descent from Matilda D' Abrincis. 

Prince, in the "Worthies of Devon," has given 
us an account of William Floyer, of Floyer Hayes, 
the fourteenth in the pedigree, who went to France 
in the retinue of the Duke of Clarence, in 1474 — 
having agreed to serve for one whole year, "with 
three archers, he to have twelve pence a day, and 
the archers sixpence each." The agreement is dated 
the fourteenth of December, 14th Edward IV. 

The Goulds ultimately sold this property to the 
Templars, who divided it, and destroyed the 
ancient house. 

The Manor of Bowhill at one time belonged to the 
Hollands, and passed to John Carew, of Anthony, 
by marriage with Thomasine Holland, daughter 
of Roger Holland, Sheriff of Devon, 1494, and 
became forfeited by the attainder of John Carew, 
whose signature is attached to the death warrant 
of King Charles I. 

However, King Charles IL, graciously restored 
the property, together with Higher Barley, to 
Thomas Carew, and with a co-heir of Carew, these 
estates went to the Sawles, and ultimately became 
the property of Elizabeth Sawle, the wife of Admiral 
Graves, and hence the family of " Graves-Sawle." 

There was an ancient domestic chapel at Bowhill, 
long used as a barn. 

Barley House was garrisoned by Sir Thomas 
Fairfax in February, 1646. 

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1 64 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

Cleave House was purchased by the Northmores, 
of South Tawton, in the reign of Charles II., and 
was long a seat of that family; in 1822 it was the 
residence of Thomas Northmore, and still belongs 
to his descendant, Mr. Northmore, of Ceylon. 

Franklands belonged to the Seales, of Mount 
Boone. Anna Maria, daughter of John Seale, 
married Mr. Charles Fanshawe; their son sold it 
to the late John Jones, the antiquarian friend of 
the late Dr. Oliver, who long resided there. 

It now belongs to the Snows. Simon Snow, 
a benefactor to the City of Exeter, was Mayor of 
the city in 1653. His mother was Grace, sister of 
Dr. Vilvayne, the founder of the exhibition at 
Exeter School which bears his name, and who was 
in other ways eminent as a philanthropist. 

They were the children of Peter, son of Stephen, 
son of John Vilvayne. The will of Peter Vilvayne, 
who resided in the parish of AUhallows, Goldsmith 
Street, was proved in 1602. 

The Old Bridewell of the County of Devon 
(which stood nearly opposite the Sheriffs Ward, 
now converted into "Artisans' Dwellings"), is said 
to have been an ancient residence of the Hollands, 
Dukes of Exeter, by whom it was originally erected. 
It was very strong and massive in its character, 
and was converted into a house of detention in the 
reign of Queen Elizabeth. 

The Manor of Exwick passed from the 
Russells to the family of Oliver, who long resided 
there. Sir Benjamin Oliver, Mayor of Exeter, 
1670-71, was knighted by King, Charles II. during 
his visit to Exeter in the latter year. He resided 

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The Parish of St. Thomas. 165 

on Fore Street Hill, but his country house was at 
Exwick. He was an Exeter merchant. At this time 
Alexander and Francis Worth, two of the younger 
sons of Henry Worth, then head of the ancient 
house of Worth in Washfield, settled in Exeter as 
merchants. Their mother was Dorothy, daughter 
of John Bampfylde, of Poltimore. It was probably 
due to the intimacy of these young men with the 
Olivers that Benjamin, son of Sir Benjamin Oliver, 
married their fifth sister, Elizabeth Worth, who is 
mentioned as his wife in her father's will, proved 
on the nineteenth of May, 1680. 

Benjamin Oliver and his wife Elizabeth appear 
to have had four children, vtz.y Benjamin, who died 
in 1668, aged six and a half years; Francis, called 
after his uncle, Francis Worth, and his great uncle, 
Francis Bampfylde ; Jane, who died in infancy, 
1667 ; and Joseph. Francis Oliver, who was 
deputy-registrar of the Consistory Court at Exeter, 
is said to have " owned Cleave," and to have left 
it, in 1725, to his grandson, Francis Oliver. But 
he can only have had a leasehold interest in the 
property, and the said grandson must have died 
without issue, as Elizabeth, widow of William 
Williams, M.D., and daughter of Joseph Oliver, the 
brother of Francis Oliver the elder, is described in 
her memorial inscription as "the last of that 
respectable family." She died on the twenty-fifth 
of June, 1776, aged 77. 

Thomas Northmore, the purchaser of Cleave, 
who was M.P. for Okehampton, had no son, and 
settled Cleave upon two nephews. The elder of 
these, William Northmore, married his cousin 

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1 66 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Anne, the said Thomas Northmore's only daugh- 
ter. She died in 17 17. 

Cleave passed, under the entail, to the younger 
nephew, John, son of JefFery Northmore, the ances- 
tor of the present owner. 

The "heirs of Williams'* sold Exwick House, with 
the barton, to Edmund Granger and Samuel Ban- 
fill, the then owners of the woollen manufactory 
which took the place of the ancient Exwick mill. 
Sir Redvers BuUer is now the lord of the manor. 

Exwick was formed into an ecclesiastical district 
in 1872. A chapel-of-ease to St. Thomas, dedi- 
cated to St. Andrew, had been erected there in 
1 84 1, and this was enlarged in 1873, at the expense 
of Mr. William Gibbs, of Tyntesfield, who endowed 
it with a yearly income of ^£200. It is now a vicar- 
age, of the yearly value of £2*1*1 with residence, 
and in the patronage of Mr. Gibbs. 

In the Church of St. Thomas there is a very 
handsome canopied tomb, with a recumbent statue, 
by Bacon, of the late Mrs. Medley, wife of the 
venerable Metropolitan of Canada, who was for 
some years the vicar of the parish. 

Oldridge, which is distant about six miles from 
St. Thomas, and is in the neighbourhood of 
Crediton, has been identified as the " Olperige " of 
Domesday, which, at the period of the Survey, was 
held by Rainald, under the Earl of Mortain. 

Robert, Earl of Mortain, was the Conqueror's 
uterine brother, and the larger portion of his pos- 
sessions, together with the Earldom of Cornwall, 
ultimately passed into the hands of Reginald de 
Dunstanville, an illegitimate son of King Henry I. 

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The Parish of St, Thomas, 167 

The daughter of this Reginald, Avis, was the 
wife of Richard de Redvers, third Earl of Devon, 
so that Oldridge may probably have passed 
through the latter family into the hands of the 
Courtenays, and may have been one of their several 
gifts to Cowick Priory ,v subsequently to the death 
of Isabella de Fortibus. 

This theory is supported by the fact, that there is 
no mention of Oldridge in the earliest records of 
the Priory, nor is the chapel referred to in the 
"Taxatio" of 1291. 

At the dissolution it had passed with Cowick 
into the hands of the Abbot of Tavistock, and it 
is included with the rest of the possessions of 
Tavistock Abbey in the "Valor" of 1535. 

There were anciently five separate estates in 
Oldridge, which extended, in all, to about four 
hundred and fifty acres of land. The ancient chapel, 
which had been maintained from time immemorial 
for the use of the inhabitants, was conveyed to 
John Lord Russell, with the rest of the property, 
and remained for some time in the Russell family, 
until it was at length purchased by the Trowbridges' 
of Trowbridge. 

George Trowbridge pulled down the old chapel, 
and used the stones to repair a portion of his own 
residence (the communion table was long used as a 
part of the fiirniture of the village ale-house), and, 
it is said, that prosperity deserted his family and 
himself from that period, and that " all those con- 
cerned in the desecration, especially one, who 
appropriated the chapel bell for his trouble, died 

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1 68 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

Trowbridge House was soon in the market, and 
was purchased by Samuel Strode, who sold it, 
together with Oldridge, to Giles, son of Gilbert 
Yarde, of Bradley. 

Mr; Giles Yarde gave the timber for a new chapel, 
which was erected at the expense of Mr. James 
BuUer, the patron, in 1789. In 1791 the executors 
of Mr. Yarde sold the lands in parcels. Oldridge 
is still a chapel ry, dependent upon the Vicarage of 
St. Thomas. 

Eustace Budgell, one of the contributors to the 
Spectator y is said to have been born in the parish of 
St. Thomas, in 1685, although his name does not 
occur in the parochial registers, which commence, 
baptisms, 1541, burials, 1554, and marriages, 1576. 
Chapel says that "Budgell was bom in Exeter 
about 1680." 

By indenture, on the twentieth of November, 
1564, William Harris and John Jake granted to 
William Floyer, and others, a messuage and a 
garden in " Co wick Street," lately the property of 
Walter Battyn, formerly vicar of the parish, in 
trust for the repairs and maintenance of the parish 
church. The deed recites that the said property 
was the gift of the said deceasied vicar. 

These premises were demolished during the Civil 
War, but were re-built by the parishioners prior to 
the year 1672, in which year it was agreed that the 
then vicar. Rev. John Reynolds, should inhabit 
this house during his tenure of the Vicarage, sub- 
ject to a yearly rent of ten shillings, to be em- 
ployed by the churchwardens in accordance with 
the intentions of the original donor. 

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The Parish of St, Thomas. 169 

The succeeding Vicars of St. Thomas continued 
to reside in this house until 1781, when the then 
Vicar, the Rev. J. B. Coplestone, agitated for a new 
dwelling, upon the plea, that the old one " was ex- 
posed to floods." It was therefore determined that 
the premises should be leased for the largest fine 
that could be obtained, subject to an annual rent of 
ten shillings, reserved by the lessors. 

The tenement was let, on the fourth of December, 
1806, for ninety-nine years, determinable on three 
lives, at the above-mentioned rent, which does not 
seem to have been subsequently enforced, and in 
consideration of a fine of £,2^0. 

The latter sum, together with ;^i05 raised by a 
rate, was paid to Mr. Coplestone in aid of the 
expense of building a new vicarage upon a small 
piece of glebe-land near the church, and this house 
w^as built at an expense of ;^ 1,000. 

The poor of the parish participate in the " bread 
charities" of Lawrence Seldon and Sir John 

Bartholomew Berry, of Barley, gave by deed 
on the second of July, 1635, a plot of land "lying 
near the pound," out of the profits of which a sum 
of twenty shillings per annum was to be paid to the 
^* minister" for preaching sermons on Good Friday 
and Ascension Day, and the remainder was to be 
distributed to the poor " for ever." 

William Floyer was one of the original trustees. 
Mr. Berry seems really to have given instead of a 
specified sum, " all his orchards, houses, and gar- 
dens in Cowick Street," and the houses were 
demolished in the Civil War. The premises, sub- 

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170 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

sequently rebuilt, were used as the parish poor- 

Two houses adjoining the churchyard represent 
the ancient " church house," and it is shown by a 
lease, on the thirtieth of April, 1674, from Thomas 
Reynell and others, executors of the will of William 
Gould, to Sir Thomas Carew, that the " church of 
St. Thomas had been burned during the Civil War," 
and that the chest containing the parish deeds and 
writings had been then also destroyed, and that 
nothing of the house was remaining, at the above 
date, but " old ruinous walls." 

The present houses were therefore built by the 
parishioners, and were long kept in repair out of 
the rates, and occupied, rent free, by paupers. 
They were demised by Gould's executors to Sir 
Thomas Carew and others, parishioners, for two 
hundred years, subject to a yearly rental of one 
shilling. The lease expired on the thirtieth of 
April, 1874. 

William Gould, in 1637, gave a rent-charge of 
eight pounds per annum, to which his son, William 
Gould, added two pounds in 1642, for the purposes 
of a parish school. Robert Pate, of Cowick Barton, 
gave thirty pounds in 1687, the interest to be em* 
ployed for the instruction of the children of poor 
people in reading and writing. 

Robert Pate, sen., in 1677 gave an annuity of 
twenty shillings out of Cowick; John Peter, in 
1570, twenty shillings per annum out of the sheaf 
of Cornworthy ; Nicholas Evans, twenty shillings 
a year for ever, in 1618 ; and Elizabeth Painter, in 
181 2, the interest of one hundred pounds; — all 

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The Parish of St, Thomas, 1 7 1 

these gifts to be devoted to the relief of the poor 
of the parish* 

Finally, William Gould, sen., by will, on the 
twentieth of May, 1632, gave four pounds yearly, 
to issue out of Hayes, at least twenty days before 
Christmas, and to be spent by the vicar, church- 
wardens, and overseers "in grey frieze, or watchet 
blue cloth, to make jerkins and hose, for men and 
boys, and gowns for women and maids," to be 
given to those in " most need." 

He also left £20^ "to be lent out gratis, on bond, 
to such men as would set the wandering poor on 
work, and that for a year or more " ; and by codicil 
he gave an additional eight pounds, "yearly for 
ever," "to be disposed of at the discretion of his 
heirs and the minister of the parish for the time 
being, to the use of the poor." 

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A LPHINGTON, in the Deanery of Kenne, is 
'^^^ about two miles distant from Exeter, on the 
road to Plymouth. 

This village takes its name from the little stream- 
let called the Alphin, anciently the "Alfrain," 
which flows through the village. The short account 
of this parish given by the Lysons' "Magna 
Britannia," Vol. 2, pp. 8-9, is very incorrect and 

These authors appear to have confounded the 
manor with that of East AUington, and the Matford 
property, partially, with the estate of the same 
name, situated in the Parish of Heavitree. 

Alphington formed a portion of the great Barony 
of Okehampton, and belonged to Baldwin de Brion, 
Sheriff of Devon. Almar held it under the name 
of " Alfreincombe," in the reign of Edward the 
Confessor. It paid tax for one hide, which could 
be worked by nine ploughs. 

At the period of the Survey, "Robert" held it 
under Baldwin, and had in demesne one virgate, 
and two ploughs. There were then upon the manor 
twelve villeins, twelve bordarii, or cottagers, five 
serfs, one pack horse, five head of cattle, fifteen 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Alphington, 175 

swine, one hundred and thirty-three sheep, five 
acres of meadow, and a hundred acres of pasture,, 
and it was worth yearly ;^4, and had not increased 
in value since Saxon times. 

This " Robert," the sub-tenant under Baldwin, 
was probably one of the two younger sons of the 
latter, and, presumably, died without issue ; he was 
for some time Governor of Brion, in Normandy, 
of which town his grandfather, Gilbert, had been 

Robert had a brother, William of Avenel, usually 
stated to have been the husband of his own sister 
Emma, as already noticed in the account of Cowick 
Priory, and this William, or his son, Ralph, would 
appear to have succeeded ultimately to the Alph- 
ington property, since by deed, executed, as shown 
by internal evidence, after 1142, and before March,. 
1 155, William Avenel, son of Ralph, son of William, 
brother to "Adeliza," Baroness of Okehampton,. 
and therefore to the other children of Baldwin 
de Brion, viz.y Richard and Emma, gave to the 
Monks of Plympton, " The Chapel of Exeter 
Castle, and the four Prebends, the Churches of St. 
Michael, Alphington, and St. Andrew of Kenne 
(Chen), which Ranulphus, my father, and Adeliza, 
his aunt, on the father's side (^ ejus amtta' ) 'gave 
them' originally." 

It will be seen by reference to my notice of 
William of Avenel, in connection with Cowick, what 
very valuable evidence this document affords, the 
original of which is preserved in the College of 

Possibly by gift on the part of William of Avenel,. 

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174 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

the younger, or of his father, Ralph, the next 
owner of the Manor of Alphington was Anianus, 
alias Eneon, Archdeacon of Anglesey, and Bishop 
of Bangor, from 1267 to 1306, and after him it was 
owned by Sir John de Neville. 

The Priory of Plympton do not seem to have 
long retained the patronage of the Church, since 
Bishop Bronescombe collated Hugh de Staneway, 
Dean of Exeter, to the Rectory, in July, 1263, and, 
his successor, " John of Excester," afterwards Trea- 
surer of the Cathedral, was presented by Sir John 
de Neville on the twenty-ninth of June, 1278. 

The Nevilles seem to have obtained the manor in 
exchange with the diocese of Bangor. It was their 
property until 1349, when Sir Hugh de Neville 
presented. Soon after it became the property of 
Hugh de Segrave, probably by purchase. 

Sir John de Neville was a Church benefactor, 
and founded a religious establishment at Stoke- 
Courcy, in Somerset ; but I have found no evidence 
of any marriage with the Segraves, which would 
account for the descent of the Alphington property. 
However, James de Cobham exchanged Alphington 
Rectory for Sampford Courtenay, with the consent 
of his patron, Hugh de Segrave, in 136 1-2, and 
shortly after the year 1382, Hugh de Segrave ex- 
changed the Manor of Alphington for that of 
Newenham Courcy, in Oxfordshire, with Sir Philip 
Courtenay, of Powderham. The advowson of the 
Rectory soon after, however, became the property 
of the Earl of Devon. 

The Manors of Nuneham Iweme, Co. Dorset, and 
Nuneham Courcy, in Oxfordshire, were Redvers 

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The Parish of Alphtngton. 175 

property, and seem to have passed in marriage 
with Mary de Redvers to Robert Courtenay, who 
was at one time Sheriff of Oxfordshire, and died 
whilst staying at his Manor House at Nuneham 
Iwerne, then written " Ywren," in 1242. 

Nuneham Courcy, afterwards known as Nune- 
ham Courtenay, had been, immediately after the 
Conquest, the property of Richard, son of Robert 
de Courcy, who was the brother of Richard de 
Neville, ancestor of that noble family, and this 
recollection may have had something to do with the 
exchange of the Manor of Alphington for that of 
Nuneham, although, as I have already remarked, I 
have not found any evidence that the Nevilles and 
Segraves were in any way related to each other. 

The first Patron of Alphington after the 
Courtenays became the owners, was Sir Peter 
Courtenay, who presented his nephew, Richard, 
eldest son of Sir Philip Courtenay, by his wife, Ann 
Wake, to the Rectory, on the sixth of April, 1403. 
This Rector became Bishop of Norwich on Sep- 
tember the twenty-seventh, 14 13, but died two 
years subsequently. 

The Bishop only held Alphington a few months, 
since Sir Peter presented his successor, John 
Plaistowe, on the twenty-eighth of December, 1403. 

In 14 19, Sir Peter, who had died unmarried, in 
1405, was succeeded in the patronage of this living 
by his nephew, and heir, Edward Courtenay, Earl 
of Devon. 

The Courtenay Earls continued to present to 
Alphington until the division of the property 
amongst the co-heirs of Edward, Earl of Devon, 

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176 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

who died at Padua, in 1556. The last Courtenay 
who exercised the right of patronage was the said 
Earl Edward's father, Henry, Marquess of Exeter, 
Earl of Devon, and Lord of Okehampton, who 
was beheaded by Henry VIII., in 1539. 

William Oldreve "occurs as Rector" in 1536. 
He was the incumbent of the living at the time of 
the Ecclesiastical Survey in that year, when his 
benefice was valued at £1^ 6s. 8d. per annum. By 
his will, dated August the eleventh, 1558, he desires 
a requiem mass for the repose of his soul. He 
gives forty shillings for the repair of the fabric. 

Four poor women were to attend the " requiem " 
with tapers in their hands, and to have five pence 
each for their trouble ; twenty of the poorest 
inhabitants were to receive twenty pence each. 
The will was proved at the Principal Registry, 
Exeter, on the tenth of June, 1559. 

Upon the death of Edward Courtenay, at Padua, 
in 1556, the estates belonging to the Earldom were 
divided amongst the representatives of his great 
g^eat aunts, the four daughters of the second 
Sir Hugh Courtenay, of Bocconoc and Haccombe. 

The " Inquisition," taken after the death of the 
Earl (who in consequence of his father s attainder, 
had been so created by Queen Mary, in 1553, with 
remainder to his heirs male, for ever), proved that 
the descendants of these ladies were Reginald 
Mohun, Alexander Arundell, John Vivian, the 
younger, Margaret, wife of Richard Buller, and 
John Trelawny. The Manor of Alphington, had 
always descended in the Powderham branch of 
the Courtenays, and with them it has since 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Alphington, 177 

remained, and the then owner was Sir William 
Courtenay, of Powderham, who, de jurCy succeeded 
to the earldom, although he died without claiming 
it, soon after the decease of his kinsman. He met 
his death at the siege of St. Quentin, on the twenty- 
sixth of September, 1557. 

But a great deal of the property belonging to the 
elder branch of the Courtenays, was dispersed by 
the co-heirs, for the purposes of division, and the 
advowson of the Rectory of Alphington, became 
the property of John Bourchier, Earl of Bath. 

William, third Earl of Bath, sold several pre- 
sentations, and Bartholomew Parr, Rector of Clist 
St. Mary, presented on the tenth of February, 
1637-38, the right having been assigned to him by 
the then late Rector of Alphington, John Doughty, 
who had acquired it from Lord Bath. 

Rachel, Countess of Bath, presented to Alph- 
ington, as late as 1677. She was the widow of Sir 
Henry Bourchier, who had succeeded his nephew 
as fifth Earl of Bath, in 1636. 

With the death of the fifth Earl, the title of Bath, 
in the Bourchier family, became extinct, and the 
advowson of Alphington was again sold, and the 
purchasers were the Pitman family. The first of 
them is described as "John Pitman, of Kenton, 

Three of the Pitmans held this Rectory between 
the years 17 12 and 1768, with an interval of a year 
or two, between September, 1739, and March, 1742, 
and the presentation remained with their family 
for several years subsequently, until it passed into 
the hands of the EUicombes. The patronage is 


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178 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

now with the Rector, the Rev. E. J. G. Dupuis. 

After an abeyance of two hundred and seventy- 
five years, the lord of the Manor of Alphington, the 
third Viscount Courtenay of Powderham, estab- 
lished his claim to the Earldom of Devon on the 
fifteenth of March, 1831, and then succeeded as 
the ninth earl of the creation of 1553. He died 
unmarried, on the twenty-sixth of May, 1835, when 
the baronetcy, and the earldom, with its property, 
including the Manor of Alphington, passed to his 
second cousin, William Courtenay (son of Dr. H. R 
Courtenay, Lord Bishop of Exeter), father of the 
present earl. 

Sir William Courtenay, of Powderham, bom 1553, 
and who should have been third Earl of Devon, of 
Queen Mary's creation, was, as previously stated, 
one of the undertakers for the Settlement of Ireland, 
and " laid the foundation of that vast property in 
Limerick, which has since been enjoyed by his 

The following copy of a letter written by his 
grandson. Sir William Courtenay, during a sojourn 
in Ireland, and addressed to Mr. Gilbert Yarde, of 
Bradley, is still preserved at Powderham. Sir 
William died on the twenty-eighth of July, 1702. 
The copy is undated. 

"Sir, — I have so reall and entire affection for 
yrselfe and family, yj neither distance of place, 
seas, rockes, mountains, nor boggis, could hinder 
me fi'om sending you my faithfuU service, and wish 
both you and yrs all happinisse imaginable. 85 
since my landing in this kingdom, I have traveled 
some hundreds of miles, but a richer soyle (for the 

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The Parish of Alphington. 179 

g-enerallity), never eyes beheld, and I find nothing 
so ill heere as ye natives, wch are y« worst genera- 
tion of people y« world affords. I shall onle 
instance one thing as to ye excellence of ye land, 
because ye messenger's haste will permit me no 
longer time. I have here about my old castle, 
some 5 or 6 and thirty thousand acres of land, 
most of wch are as good as any land in my mannor 
of Alphtngtofiy and better naturally, yet I am forct 
to sett ym for lesse at twelve pence an acre, wch 
goes to ye heart of mee, yet it cannot be helped. 
If ever God Almighty punish Ireland again, 'twill 
be for their excesse in eating and' drinking, which 
far exceeds England, though I thought in those 
vertues we could not be outdone, till I had ex- 
perimented it here. Pardon this hasty incoherent 
scribble, and a better and perfecte account of this 
kingdome shall be given you in my next, by. Sir, 
Your faithful Servant, 

William Courtenay." 

Alphington Church is dedicated in memory of 
St. Michael, and comprehends chancel, nave, north 
and south aisles, a western tower, and a south 
porch. The church is about ninety feet long, in- 
clusive of the tower, which is over seventy feet high. 
The breadth of the nave and aisles, which latter 
open into the nave under an arcade of five bays, is 
over forty feet. 

There is an aspersorium, or holy water stoup, 
in the porch, and the font is of Norman date and 
peculiarly rich in style. It is of circular form, 
and round the top is a representation of the combat 
of St. Michael with the Great Dragon, who is 

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i8o The Suburbs of Exeter. 

thrusting his lance into the monster's mouth ; 
behind the Saint is the figure of his dog. The 
sculpture is in bold relief, so also is the ornamenta- 
tion of the lower part, which consists of a Norman 
arcading, the points of the arches intersecting one 
another, a style which is considered to have 
heralded the introduction of the pointed arch, 
which commenced to supersede the circular towards 
the end of the twelfth century. 

One of the piers which support the arcading- 
between the nave and aisles, had a double capital, 
^ a rather unusual feature ; the lower one, however, 
was cut away in 1827, as noted by Dr. Oliver. 
The remains of piscinae at the east ends of the aisles 
denote the site of chantry altars. 

The church generally is of perpendicular, or 
third pointed date, and was probably extensively 
altered and added to in the fourteenth century, in 
common with most of our Devonshire churches. 
It is certain, as shown by inequalities in the 
masonry, that the original structure was, at some 
time, considerably lengthened. 

The church was extensively restored in 1878 at 
an expense of about ;£3,ooo, and the ancient rood 
screen was then repaired at the cost of the Earl of 
Devon, brother of the present Earl. 

The Prior and Convent of St. Nicholas, at Exeter, 
had an annual pension from the church of two 
shillings, and proved their right to it in 1330. On 
one or two occasions the Prior presented to the 
rectory, in 13 10, and again in 1390, probably by 
concession of the true patrons. 

The tower and church suffered from a severe 

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The Parish of Alphington. i8i 

thunderstorm in 1826. On this occasion four of 
the ringers were struck by lightning, and the 
sexton's son, George Coles, was killed. There are 
eight bells in the tower. 

The rectory was valued at ;^8 per annum in 1291. 

Judging from the font, it is probable that this 
church was built by Ralph Avenel, with the con- 
sent of his aunt Adeliza, Lady of Okehampton, 
and that they immediately handed it over to Plymp- 
ton Priory. This must have been previously to 
1 142, as Adeliza died in that year. 

Richard succeeded his father, Baldwin, in the 
Barony of Okehampton, and died in 1137, when 
he was followed by his sister, Adeliza, these two 
being the children of Baldwin de Brion, by 
Albreda, niece of William the Conqueror. Robert 
de Brion, William Fitz-Baldwin de Avenel, and, it 
has also been believed, Emma, were children of 
Baldwin de Brion by a second marriage, and 
therefore the barony was inherited by Adeliza 
instead of by her two half-brothers. 

But from the ultimate judicial exclusion of the 
Avenels from the succession to the barony, in 
favour of the descendants of " Emma," it would 
appear almost certain that this lady, the wife of 
William de Abrincis, must have been the issue of 
Baldwin de Brion' s first marriage, and whole, 
instead of half-sister to Adeliza. 

It will give some idea, as to the difference in the 
relative value of money, to remark that Alphington 
Rectory, which was worth £^ per annum in 1291, 
had increased in value to the amount of ;^34 6^. 8rf. 
in 1536. The tithe rent charge is now ;^794 per 

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1 82 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

annum, and there are twenty-six acres of glebe. 

The parish registers commence alike in 1663 : the 
earlier ones have been lost. 

The ancient cross may be seen on the high road, 
near the entrance to the village. 

There were fairs at Alphington on the first 
Wednesday after the twentieth of June, and in the 
week after Michaelmas, but they have been dis- 
continued since 1870. It is unlikely that they were 
of any great age, as they are not mentioned in the 
Hundred Rolls. The entry in these of a market and 
fair for Alphington, at Michaelmas, evidently refers 
to West Alvington, as noted by Lysons. 

Risdon tells us of a man who died at Alphington 
in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, aged 120; he was 
called Stone, and held ofiice in the Chapel Royal. 

Westcote, by the way, furnishes a touching story 
about a lady, of the parish of St. Thomas, who had 
a dog which was so much affected by its mistress's 
death, that it afterwards declined food, escaped to 
the churchyard, and died on the good lady's 

The father of the late Charles Dickens resided 
for some time at Alphington, but the great novelist 
was born at Portsmouth, in 181 2. 

Matford, in this parish, was an ancient seat of 
the Dinham family, and was thence known as 
Matford Dinham. It was subsequently the pro- 
perty of a younger branch of the Northleigh family, 
who ultimately acquired Peamore by marriage with 
the heiress of Tothill. 

Robert Northleigh, of Matford Dinham, was 
bijfied at Alphington, in 1639. 

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The Parish of Alphington, 183 

The last of the Northleighs, Stephen, married a 
co-heiress of Davey, and died in 1713. 

His heiress married Hippisley Coxe, and Henry 
H. Coxe sold Matford to Sir Laurence Vaughan 
Palk, Baronet, the ancestor of Lord Haldon. 

Almost immediately opposite to this estate, but 
on the other side of the river, is another property 
also called Matford, but situated in the parish of 
Heavitree, to which I have referred previously. 

Lysons has confused the two Matfords, as I 
have already noticed, and has seated " Sir George 
Smith " in Alphington instead of Heavitree. Be- 
tween the two estates, however, there is a ford 
across the river which forms the continuation of a 
road between Alphington and Heavitree; it crosses 
the water just below " Salmon Pool.'' 

This road must have afforded a very short cut 
between the London road at Heavitree, and the 
Plymouth road at Alphington, and the two Mat- 
fords doubtless took name from the ford, which 
was probably artificial, and therefore known as 
" Maad-ford," i,e,. Made-ford, or " Mad-ford." 

It has been suggested recently that the names 
bear reference to the ford, but that they are 
derived from "Mate or Maetan Ford, that is, the 
beaten track across the stream." This would be, I 
think, a plausible interpretation, if any such signi- 
fication could be found for the Anglo-Saxon word 
"MaBtan," which is usually translated "Somniare," 
to dream. Gower applies this word to the eflFects of 
drunkenness, and it is written by Douglas, "Mait" 
and " Mate." Dr. Richardson gives the meaning 
of the word, " to be, or cause to be, insensate." 

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1 84 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

The other Anglo-Saxon verb, "Metan," from 
which " Mate," that is, one of a pair, is derived, 
signifies to meet, whilst " beaten " comes from the 
Anglo-Saxon, Beatatiy not Mcetan, 

There is another place in this county known as 
" Matford," in the parish of Hemlock, and which 
probably owes its name to a similar ford across the 

The ancient Priory of " St. Mary de Marisco," 
long known as MARSH Barton, which was a cell 
to Plympton Priory, is chiefly situated in the parish 
of Alphington, although it extends into that of St. 
Thomas, as previously noticed. 

According to Dr. Oliver, Marsh Barton is men- 
tioned in a letter of Ralph Avenel's, addressed to 
Robert Warelwast, Bishop of Exeter, between the 
years 1155 and 1160. But this letter was of 
earlier date than he supposed, and was really ad- 
dressed to Bishop Chichester, 11 38-1 155, instead of 
Bishop Warelwast. 

Because Ralph Avenel was dead when his son 
confirmed" his father s previous gift of the Church 
of Alphington, and this confirmation must have 
been in, or previously, to the year 1155, since it 
is addressed to Robert, Bishop of Exeter, to 
Baldwin the Earl, and to Richard, son of the Earl. 
Bishop Robert Chichester died in March, 1155; 
Baldwin, Earl of Devon, on the fourth of June, the 
same year ; and Bishop Robert Warelwast was not 
consecrated until the day after the Earl's death, 
vtz.y on the fifth of June, 1 155. 

Marsh Barton seems to have been a very small 
foundation, and only the names of four Superiors, 

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The Parish of Alphtngton, 185 

or " Custodes," have been recovered. Of the first 
of these, Thomas Cryer, the following anecdote has 
been preserved. 

The cook of the priory assaulted him with a 
drawn dagger, and Cryer knocked him down with 
a stick, and inflicted a severe wound on his head, 
from the effects of which he died three days after- 

Bishop Stafford on September fifth, 1409, pro- 
nounced Cryer free from censure in this matter, and 
permitted him to resume the exercise of his office, 
and his priestly duties. 

The Cell of St. Mary de Marisco had a consider- 
able amount of property in Exeter, and the suburbs, 
viz,^ land and tenements in the parishes of St. Sid- 
well, St. Stephen, AUhallows, Goldsmith Street, 
St. Paul, St. Pancras, St. Martin, St. Petrock (two 
tenements and four shops in High Street), St. 
Kerrian (two tenements, a stable and garden), St. 
Olave (two tenements and four shops), St. Mary 
Arches, " Coke Rew," St. Mary Major, Holy 
Trinity, St. George, and St. Mary Steps. 

The houses, shops, and small pieces of land in 
these parishes, and in ** Coke Rew," near the Con- 
duit, produced an annual income oi £21 \2S, ']d. 

In Alphington the monks had about seventeen 
acres of land, land beyond Exminster, and several 
houses and gardens, worth, inclusively, £1 %s, ^d. a 

In Heavitree they had four acres of land, near 
the road, towards the village, "between the Granary 
of Henry Hule and that of the Prior of St. James', 
near the Marsh." 

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1 86 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

And, in the immediate neighbourhood of the last, 
they had another four acres.* The total rental of 
** Marescombe, nigh the city of Exeter," was, 
according to the Valor Ecclesiasticus, ;^ 28 8^. \\d. 
clear of all deductions. 

In 1546, King Henry VIII. granted the site of 
Marsh Barton Cell to James Coffin and Thomas 

Coffin seems to have built a " mansion " there, 
or else he converted the priory into a residence ; in 
1562, he sold to John Hoker, the City Chamberlain, 
all the trees, oak, ash, elm, &c., &c., standing, in 
the grove at the south side of "Marsh mansion 
house," between the running water on the south, 
and the open pasture, adjoining the said mansion, 
on the north, the great pool on the west, and a 
ditch on the east. For these, and some other oak 
trees, standing on the south-east of the mansion, 
Hoker paid £21 , 

James Coffin, of Marsh Barton, was the third son 
of Richard Coffin, of Portledge; he died in 1566, 
and was buried at Monkleigh. He left four 
daughters, co-heirs ; three of them married Wye, 
Gere, and Mallett. 

So that James Coffin was not, as Lysons says, 
the ancestor of Mr. Richard Pyne-Coffin, of Port- 
ledge, who was, however, the owner of Marsh 
Barton in 1822. 

James Coffin was married on the fifth of Feb- 
ruary, 1559-60, to Elizabeth Ede, at Ashton under 

" St. Mary's Acre," at Marsh Barton, was tithe 
free, but none, save the immediate residents of the 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Parish of Alphington, 187 

inner court of the priory, were discharged from 
attendance at Alphingfon Church. 

The old inn, known as the " Admiral Vernon,'* 
at Alphington, was the ancient Church House, 
built on land given in 149Q by Sir William 
Courtenay, of Powderham, great great grandson of 
the first Sir Philip Courtenay, and of his wife, 
Anne Wake. 

The house was leased on the third of May, 1784, 
for ninety-nine years, determinable on three lives, 
for a fine of ;£ioo, and a yearly rental of ;^5. 

The income which arose from the fine, was 
applied to the repair and new seating of the church, 
and the annual rent, together with another £^^ the 
interest of a bequest under the will of Edward 
Leach (April the twenty-fourth, 1688), was dis- 
tributed at Christmas, in bread to the poor. 

Under the grant of Sir William Courtenay, the 
rents and profits of this house were intended to be 
used for the reparation of the parish church, and 
the Charity Commissioners did not consider that 
any portion of them should be applied to the relief 
of the poor. When they made their report, the 
** Admiral Vernon " was considered to be worth 
an annual rent of at least ;^30. 

The Hamlyn Family. 

Certain lands in Holcombe Burnell were pur- 
chased with money given for the purpose by 
Roger Hamlyn^ John Bliss, Roger and Ann Lambs- 
head, and Fidelis Stoyle, between the years 1628 
and 1673 ; the said lands to be "for the use of 

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1 88 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

the parish for ever." At one time the rent of these 
lands seems to have been devoted to the repair of 
the Church, but the Commissioners were of opinion 
that they should be applied for the benefit of the 

A branch of the Hamlyn family were long resi- 
dent in this parish, and also in the neighbouring 
ones of St. Thomas and St. Leonard ; in the 
latter, they were settled at Larkbeare fi"om a very 
early date. 

James Hamlyn, of Alphington, died in 1625, and, 
three years later, Roger Hamlyn, as shown above, 
was a benefactor to the poor of his parish. They 
were cadets of the ancient house of Hamlyn, the 
history of which is coeval with all that is actually 
authentic in the history of this county, and the 
earliest documentary evidence in existence bears 
record to the high social position of the Hamlyns, 
not only in Devonshire, but in many other English 
counties as well, although it is possible, and very 
probable, that the only connection between the 
Hamlyns of the West and those of other parts of 
England consisted in identity of name. 

This, like many other English surnames, was 
evidently derived from their habitation in a watered 
valley, " ham *' and " lynna " being both Saxon 
terms, expressive of the home by the pool, or 
water ; and thus we get the German " Hamelin," 
the town on the river Hamel. 

It has been thought that the earliest record of 
^' Hamelin " in this county occurs in a " Saxon 
deed,'' quoted by Risdon ; but, from the occurrence 
in it of such names as " Veteripont" and "Launcels," 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Hamlyn Family, 189 

this deed was evidently executed after the Norman 
Conquest, and there can be no doubt as to the 
identity of the particular "Hamelin" who witnessed 
it, as I shall be able presently to show. 

The name of "Hamelin" occurs in several copies 
of the " Battle Abbey Roll," and so does that of 
** Baylon " or ** Balun," and it is well known 
that the Conqueror's army was made up of Conti- 
nental adventurers, and was by no means restricted 
to his Norman subjects. Amongst his followers 
were many Germans, and it would seem certain, 
therefore, that the Hamelins themselves were of 
the latter race and were nourished upon the banks 
of the river Hamel, and were subsequently known 
as " The Hamelins," just as we should speak now 
of " The Scotch " and " The Irish " in reference to 
the constituent parts of a modern army. 

The town of Hamelin, in Lower Saxony, is 
seated at the confluence of the Hamel and Weser, 
and is twenty-two miles distant from Hanover ; 
and it is only thus that the numerous Hamlins or 
Hamlyns, who settled in England and became 
simultaneously possessed of land immediately after 
the Conquest, in this and other counties, can be 
supposed to have originated. 

We find them settled at very early dates in 
Leicestershire, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Ox- 
fordshire, Gloucestershire, and Rutland ; and that 
they founded families, henceforth known as "Ham- 
lyn," and transmitted to them their lands and 
houses, through long succeeding ages, is abun-^ 
dantly evident from our public records, an enormous 
mass of which have been carefully examined for 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

igo The Suburbs of Exeter. 

the purposes of this short history of the Hamlyn 
family. Thus, in 1274, William Hamlyn was ap- 
pointed to the custody of Leicester and Warwick. 
John Hamlyn was paymaster and leader of the 
levies in Shropshire and at Stafford, in 13 14. 
Soon afterwards Geoffry Hamlyn had a com- 
mission to protect the Prince of Wales (the Black 
Prince), in Gascony. 

The two most important Hamlyns of the eleventh 
century, were the two whose names are mentioned 
in the Battle Abbey Roll, who were quite possibly 
brothers, and were known respectively as " Hame- 
line,'' and " Hameline de Balun." The latter, 
known usually as " The Sire de Bayloun," had 
doubtless been a man of some importance in the 
diocese of Mons, where the French town of Ballan 
is situated, and had most probably migrated there 
from Germany at some period anterior to the 
Conquest. King William gave him the territory 
of Ober-Went, in Monmouthshire, and he built the 
Castle of Bergavenny by his royal master's orders. 

He lived until the latter end of the reign of 
William Ruftis, but died childless. He left the 
whole of his property to his nephew Brian, son of 
his sister Lucy, whose two sons were lepers. 
Therefore this Brian settled his lands upon his 
cousin, ** Walter of Gloucester," then High Con- 
stable of England. 

The son of the latter was created Earl of Here- 
ford, but his male line failed, and one of his 
three daughters became the wife of Sir William 
Braose. Their descendant, Eva Braose, married 
William de Cantilupe, who had then succeeded 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Hamlyn Family. 191 

the other " Hamelin," mentioned in the Battle 
Abbey Roll, in the Lordship of Broadhempston, 
which is a rather singxilar coincidence. 

And it is now time to return to this " other 
Hamelin," for with his namesakes elsewhere we 
have really nothing whatever to do, although it 
has seemed to me necessary to refer to them, in 
order to account for the frequent recurrence of the 
name in ancient records. 

" Hamelin " of Devonshire and Cornwall, called 
in Domesday ** Hamelinus,'' was the ancestor of 
our Devonshire Hamlyns. He most probably came 
to Cornwall in the immediate train of Robert, Earl 
of Mortaigne, the half-brother of William I. This 
Robert was created Earl of Cornwall, and it was 
in Cornwall that by far the greater portion of 
Hamelin's property was situated. 

In that county, either under the king or under 
the earl, he held twenty-two important manors in 
1086. Some of his posterity remained in Cornwall, 
whilst others settled in Devonshire. Of the former 
it will be enough to say that, like their Devonshire 
kinsmen, they always occupied good social posi- 
tions, as shown by patent and subsidy rolls, par- 
liamentary writs, and similar undeniable evidences. 
Thus, Hamelin was Reeve of Launceston in 1207. 
Albert and Richard Hamelyn both occur more 
than a hundred years later in Cornish records. 

But I must still confine myself to Devonshire. 
In this county, " Hamelinus" is shown by "Domes- 
day " to have held his land entirely under the Earl 
of Mortaigne, and it consisted of the Manors of 
Broadhempston and of Alwington, which latter 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

1 92 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

is the property referred to in the "Saxon deed" I 
have cited above. 

The entry in the Exchequer copy of the Survey 
proves that " Hamelinus " held Broadhempston — 
" Hamistone," as it was then called, "under the 
Earl/* and that it was taxed for two hides of land, 
which could be worked by ten ploughs, and that he 
, himself farmed sufficient for two ploughs. 

He had on this property three serfs, ten villeins 
or small farmers, nine cottagers. The manor con- 
sisted of four acres of meadow, ten of pasture, and 
twelve of wood. In the reign of Edward the 
Confessor, when Ordulf the Saxon owned it, it 
was worth forty shillings per annum ; it had in- 
creased in value, under Norman rule, to sixty- 

Upon the Manor of Alwington, Hamelin had 
ten serfs, fifteen villeins, and fifteen cottagers. 
This latter estate, however, soon passed to the 
Coffins, whose representatives, in the female line, 
are still settled at Portledge. 

But although the Hamlyns (I shall henceforth 
adopt the modern spelling of their name) soon disap- 
peared from both their original settlements in this 
county, yet they simultaneously acquired other 
possessions in the immediate neighbourhood ; and 
that this was effected by exchange of land is 
certain, from the fact that, in their fresh acquisi- 
tions, they continued to hold under the same lord 

Thus the Hamlyns of Widecombe, who may be 
considered the heads of the family, obtained their 
first property in that parish by barter with Richard, 

Digitized by VjOOQ IC 

The Hamlyn Family, 193 

the son of Turold, who held the Widecombe Manor 
of Natsworthy under the earl, as did Erchenbold 
the Manor of Bratton, near Alwington, which, at 
about the same period (i 187-1200), also passed to 

The descendants of the first Hamlyn of Wide- 
combe and Bratton were very numerous, and 
spread consequently into numerous branches. One 
of the most important of these settled in the 
hundred of Wonford, and the fifth in descent fi"om 
" Hamelinus " of Domesday was Richard Hamlyn 
of Wonford, who flourished between the years 
1 1 66-1 2 1 6. He was the father of "Hamlyn of 
Wonford," who resided at Larkbeare, as shown by 
the " Fines," 3rd Henry III, and also of Hamlyn, 
sumamed " the Harper," of Hill, in the Parish of 

Hamlyn of Larkbeare was the ancestor of the 
Hamlyns of Exeter, St. Thomas, and Alphington. 
Those of Exeter, in the course of years, prospered 
in mercantile pursuits, and gave mayors to that city, 
and filled other municipal offices, and from them is 
descended the present " Squire " of Paschoe, in 
Colebrook, and of Lee Wood, in the Parish of 
Bridestowe. It is shown by the subsidy rolls of 
14th Henry VIII. that Henry Hamlyn of Exeter, 
Thomas Hamlyn of Totnes, and Richard Hamlyn 
of Widecombe, all held lands at that time of over 
£,^0 per annum rental. 

Hatnlyn, sumamed the "Harper," is shown to 
have been the son of Richard Hamlyn, of Wonford, 
by the Fine rolls ; and Hill, the estate upon which 
he was settled, remained in the hands of his 


Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

194 The Suburbs of Exeter, 

descendants until a few years ago, when it was sold 
by the father of Mrs. William Hamlyn, of Buck- 
fastleigh, the present owner of Littlecombe. He 
was the grandfather of Sir William " Hamlyn de 
Deandon," called by Pole the son of " William " 
[Hamlyn] " de Deandon," who was certainly his 
heir, and also of Walter Hamlyn, of Widecombe, 
who, with Alice his wife, is mentioned in a legal 
(agreement of the 32nd Henry IH. 

Sir William Hamlyn de Deandon, an estate in 
Widecombe, which had been purchased of the 
Pomeroys, was also the owner of Bratton. He 
was one of the knights appointed to make a return 
of the great assize for Devon, 34th Henry III. He 
had no male issue, but his brother, Walter Hamlyn, 
already mentioned, carried on the line, and was the 
father of William Hamlyn, of Dunstone (Assize 
Rolls, 34th Edward I.; of John Hamlyn, of Chittle- 
ford (Coinage Rolls, 31st Edward I.); of Hugh 
Hamlyn and Roger Hamlyn, both of Corndon, all 
estates in Widecombe Parish ; and of Robert 
Hamlyn, M.P. for Totnes in 131 1. Sir William 
Hamlyn of Deandon had another brother, who 
was ancestor of the Hennock branch of the family. 

I should here remark that Hamlyn of Larkbeare, 
brother of Hamlyn the " Harper," of Holne, was 
the father of Sir John Hamlyn, whose son, Sir 
Osbert Hamlyn, Knight, of Larkbeare, married 
Matilda, daughter and co-heir of Sir William 
Pipard, of Blakedon Pipard, in Widecombe Parish, 
and who was attainted for high treason in 1370. 

William Hamlyn, of Dunstone, failed to answer 
the plea of Jeffiy Pomeroy in 1305, whose ancestor, 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Hamlyn Family. 195 

William de Pomeroy, had held Dunstotie at the 
period of the Domesday Survey. 

He left a son, John Hamlyn, also of Dunstone, 
whose descendant, also called John of Dunstone, 
is mentioned in the "Coinage Rolls" of 141 2, and 
was the grandfather of John Hamlyn, mentioned 
in the same rolls in 1442. His son Robert, of 
Dunstone, 6th Henry VII., was the father of Richard 
Hamlyn, of Dunstone, who succeeded to his inheri- 
tance in 1506 and died in 1522. 

He had four sons, Robert, Richard, Thomas, and 

Of these, Richard Hamlyn was the ancestor of 
those of his name, long settled at Southcombe, in 

Thomas was of Spitchwick, in Widecombe and 
of Littlecombe, in Holne. He was buried at 
Widecombe in 1574, and from him descended the 
Hamlyns of Higher Ash, Lower Ash, and Lake. 
To him I shall have to refer again. 

Robert Hamlyn was eldest son and heir of 
Richard. He "recovered" Dunstone in 1522, 14th 
Henry VIIL, on his father's death, and is shown by 
the Inquisition, taken after his own death, 3rd and 
4th Philip and Mary, to have owned Chittleford, 
Scobetor, Venton, and Dunstone, in Widecombe ; 
Dawnton, in Buckfastleigh, as well as land in 
Doddiscombleigh. He died on the sixth of April, 

His third son, Richard, settled at Dawnton, in 
Buckfastleigh. His grandson, Walter Hamlyn, of 
Buckfastleigh, was the direct ancestor of Walter 
Hamlyn, of Wooder, in Widecombe, whose will, 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

196 The Suburbs of Exeter. 

proved 1760, is sealed with the ancient arms of the 
Hamlyn family. 

Robert Hamlyn, of Chittleford, eldest son and 
heir of Robert, was ancestor of William, posthumous 
son of William Hamlyn, of Dunstone, who died in 
1736. He sold that ancient family property, and 
died in 1782. 

His uncle, Hugh Hamlyn, was settled on the 
Manor of Blackslade. The second son of Hugh, 
John Hamlyn, born at Widecombe, 1738, sold his 
property in that parish, and removed to Brent. 
His son, Joseph Hamlyn, purchased land in Buck- 
fastleigh, and died in 1866. 

He founded the woollen manufactory there, after- 
wards carried on by his sons, Joseph, John and 
William, and which has since developed into the 
great firm known as Hamlyn Brothers, the affairs 
of which are now conducted by James, Joseph, 
and William Hamlyn. 

These gentlemen, with their brothers, John, 
Thomas, and Hugh, are the sons of the aforesaid 
William Hamlyn, by his marriage with Mary, 
daughter of his kinsman, James Hamlyn, of Shutt- 
aford. Hill and Littlecombe, in the parish of Holne, 
and the direct descendant of Thomas Hamlyn, son 
of Richard, who died in 1522, and brother of Robert 
Hamlyn, of Dunstone. 

It will be seen that from the period of the Norman 
Conquest to the present time, the main branch of 
the Hamlyn family have always been large land- 
owners in this district, and that it is moreover in a 
great degree due to their energy, that the woollen 
trade, the old staple industry of the county, and 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Hamlyn Family. 197 

especially of the City of Exeter, and which was 
originally introduced and fostered by the Cistercian 
monks, still flourishes in the valley of the Dart. 

Of their ancient property at Widecombe, Lower 
Ash yet belongs to the family, although it has 
very recently passed to an heir female. Littlecombe 
is still the property of Mrs. Wm. Hamlyn, the elder, 
as I have remarked already. 

Sir John Hamlyn, of Larkbeare, father of Sir 
Osbert, was at Bouroughbridge in 1322, and his 
arms are duly recorded upon the roll of the Knights 
present at that historic contest : " Gules, a lion 
rampant ermine, crowned or." 

This short sketch of the Hamlyns would be in- 
complete without some reference to the branch of 
the family which long flourished in much repute 
at Woolfardisworthy. They seem to have been 
descended from John, fourth son of Richard Hamlyn, 
of Widecombe, and brother to Robert and Thomas, 
paternal and maternal ancestors of the present 
family of Buckfastleigh. 

The first Hamlyn of this parish, William Hamlyn, 
was of Mershwell, and his arms as previously 
blazoned, were on two shields in painted glass in 
one of the windows at Mershwell, with the date 
1540. William Hamlyn was born 1540, and buried 
at Woolfardisworthy in 1597. By his wife, Agnes 
Yeo, of Stratton, he had a son William, whose son 
William, of Mershwell, was baptized at Woolfardis- 
worthy, on the twenty-first day of October, 1579. 
His son, William Hamlyn, married Gertrude Cary, 
and was buried in 1708. He had issue by her 
fourteen children, and at his death his son Zachary 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

198 The Stiburbs of Exeter, 

Hamlyn, of whom there was a fine painting by 
Highmore, engraved by Ardell, succeeded to 

He was admitted a member of Lincolns Inn, but 
never married. Before his death he had realised a 
large fortune, and he purchased the Clovelly Estate 
of the Gary family in 1729. This, with other 
property, he settled by will in 1758, on his grand- 
nephew, James Hammett, eldest son of his nephew, 
Richard Hammett, whose mother had been his 
sister, Thomazin Hamlyn. The picture of Zachary 
Hamlyn was destroyed in a fire at Clovelly House 
in 1789. He recorded his pedigree at Heralds 
College, but did not carry it back further than the 
William Hamlyn I have mentioned as buried at 
Woolfardisworthy in 1597. 

Richard Hammett's eldest son, James Hammett, 
upon whom the property was settled, took the 
name of Hamlyn, by Act of Parliament, in 1760, 
and was created a Baronet in 1795. He died 
in 181 1. He had married Arabella, daughter and 
heir of Thomas Williams, of London, and had issue, 
James, who in 1798 assumed the additional surname 
of Williams. He was succeeded in 1829, by his son, 
James Hamlyn-Williams, as third Baronet, who 
married Lady Mary, fourth daughter of Hugh, first 
Earl Fortescue. 

They had no male issue, and the eldest daughter, 
Susan Hester, succeeded to the Clovelly property. 
She married Lieut. -Col. Fane, who took the 
additional name of Hamlyn, and had one son, 
Neville Batson Hamlyn-Fane, born 1858, and three 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

The Hamlyn Faintly, igg 

As might naturally be expected, there are fre- 
quent mention of the Hamlyns in old parochial 
and municipal records, apart from the public docu- 
ments, which I have already said have been very 
thoroughly examined for the purposes of this 
history. I may add that William Hamlyn was 
M.P. for Totnes, as far back as 1260; and that the 
ancient family of Monk, anciently Le Moyne, of 
Potheridge, quartered the Hamlyn arms in right 
of marriage of their ancestor, Adam le Moyne, 
with the daughter and heir of Hamlyn, of Cocking- 
ton. Adam le Moyne was the great grandson of 
Hugh le Moyne, of Potheridge, temp. Henry I. The 
great grandson of Adam, also called Hugh, lived 
3rd Edward I., and was the direct ancestor of 
General Monk, born at Potheridge on the sixth 
of December, 1608, and subsequently Duke of 

The pedigree of Hamlyn, of Widecombe and 
Buckfastleigh, from the Richard Hamlyn who died, 
1522, appears in Colonel Vivian's edition of the 
Heralds' Visitations of Devon. 

Six poor labourers of the parish of Alphington 
are entitled to participation in the gifts of Francis 
and Daniel Vinicombe, the latter having charged 
his land at Matford, in Exminster^ now the property 
of Colonel Trood, with thirty shillings a year for 
this purpose. 

The poor also benefit from the charitable bequests 
of Richard Hayne, who left ;^30, in 1696, Samuel 
Walkey, ;^io, in 1721, and John Pitman, £^y in 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

zoo 'Ihe Stiburbs of Exeter, 

It is possible that the "Almshouses" in Alph- 
ington, purchased of John Tregoe for the sum of 
;^45, in 1675, were procured through the donations 
of the Lambsheads, and of Fidelis Stoyle, men- 
tioned above, and that the latter had no share in 
the purchase of the Holcombe Burnell property. 
The dates on the tablet in the church, which records 
these benefactions, are posterior to the acquisition of 
the Holcombe Burnell property by the parishioners 
of Alphington. 


Page 16 — John Bankes married at St. Mary- 
Arches, Exeter, in 1660, Rebecca, daughter and 
co-heir of Richard Crossing, by Elizabeth, his 
wife, sister of Sir John Dodderidge. 

The Crossing Shield at Whipton (on a chevron, 
between three crosslets fitche6, three roundels), has 
beneath it the letters " R.B." ; that of Bankes, the 
letters " J.B.," and the date " 1697." 

Synopsis of the Earldom of Devon. 

Created by writ of ist Henry L, A.D. iioi, in 
favour of Richard Fitz-Gilbert, Sire de Redvers. 
Extinct 1293, on death of Isabella de Fortibus, 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

Additional Notes. 201 

widow of the Earl of Albemarle, and sister and 
heir of Baldwin de Redvers, eighth Earl. — Total, 
eight earls and one countess. 

Revived, by peremptory crown mandate, A.D. 
i335> in favour of Hugh Courtenay, then heir-at- 
law (through Lady Mary, his daughter) of William 
de Redvers, of Vernon, sixth Earl. 

Forfeited by attainder of Thomas Courtenay, 
1462. — Six earls. 

N.B. — ^John Courtenay, brother of Thomas Cour- 
tenay, did not " recover the Earldom " as stated 
in the text, page 100, only portions of the estates 
belonging to it. 

Humphrey Stafford, of South wick, created Earl 
of Devon, by patent, 1470, died same year. — Ext. 

Revived, by patent of creation, 1485, in favour 
of Edward Courtenay, then heir-at-law to the 
aforesaid attainted Earl, Thomas Courtenay. For- 
feited by attainder, as to succession, 1502. Restored 
to son, William, by reversal of attainder, 151 1 ; he 
died before the completion of the forms necessary, 
but was buried as an Earl, and his widow was 
recognized as Countess of Devon. 

Forfeited, by attainder of Henry Courtenay, first 
and last Marquess of Exeter of his name, 1539. — 
Three earls. 

Restored, by patent of creation, 1553, to Edward, 
son and heir of the Marquess, " to him and his 
heirs male;" became dormant at his death, S.P. 
1556 — One earl. 

Charles Blount, created Earl of Devon, by patent, 
1603, died 1606. — Ext. 

William Cavendish, created Earl of Devonshire, 

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202 Additional Notes, 

by patent, 1618. "To him and the heirs male of 
his body." Earldom still existing. 

Dormant in the " heirs male " of the earl of the 
creation of 1553, during the lives of seven of them, 
successive owners of Powderham Castle, who were 
dejure Earls of Devon. 

Title recovered, in virtue of said patent of 1553, 
by William, Viscount Courtenay, of Powderham, 

From his lordship, five earls to present date, 
January, 1892. 

Total holders of the dignity of the Earldom of 
Devon, in the houses of Redvers and Courtenay, 
from A.D. I loi to A.D. 1892. — [de facto and de jure) — 
Thirty earls and one countess. 

One earl of the house of Staflford. 

One earl of the house of Blount. 

Eleven earls of the house of Cavendish. 

Present earl of the latter race, Spencer, eighth 
Duke, and eleventh earl of Devonshire, January, 

The words "Devon," or "Devonshire," as em- 
ployed in the several patents, although considered 
by many to be a distinction^ are entirely without 


Page 46. ^^ Animi'* is a misprint for Anima, 
„ 47. " Countercharged " is a misprint for 

" counterchanged." 
„ 50. For " this intimate " read, " their inter- 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 


Aaron, Emblem of, 45 

Abrincis, Emma de, 148 ; Maud, 
148 ; Wm., 148, 181 

Acland, John, 70 ; Sir John, 169 

Adeliza of Okehampton, 148 

Adobat, Ruald, 10, 53 

Agatha, St., Emblem of, 45 

Ailmar, 142 

Ailworth, John, 41 ; Thos., 41 

Albemarle, Earl of, 86; Duke 
of, 17, 199 

Albreda, 79-81 

Alexan/ier,Arms of, 47 ; Rose,47 

Alfleta, 53 

Alfred, King of England, 120 

Alice, the anchorite, 64 

Alkebarwe, John, 153 

Almar, 172 

Alric, 36 

Alwin, 36 

Ameredith, Griffith, 55 

Anne, St., 51 

Anselme, St., 146 

Ansger, 36 

Arundell, 104-5, &c. ; Alex., 176 

Ashley, 38 

Athelstan, King, 120 

Atherley, 48 

Augustine, Prior of St. James, 61 

Avenel, Maud, 81 ; Ralph, 81, 
144, 148, 173, 181, 184; Wm. 
de, 144, 173, 184 

Avenel Family, 87 ; of Sheep- 
wash, &c., 149 

Avis of St. Leonards, 60 ; 
Stephen, 60. 

Babington, 127 

Baldwin, 36 ; Wm. Fitz., 81 ; of 

Flanders, 74; the Sheriff, 143 
Balun, Hamelin de, 189 
Bamfield, Grace, 139 

Bampfylde,i2,69; Dorothy,i65, 
John, 165 

Banfill, Samuel, 166 

Bankes, Arms of, 16 ; John, 16 ; 
Wm. 15, 16, 48 ; see also ad- 

' ditional page 

Bannaster, Thos., 40 

Baring, John, 8, 10, 62, 70, 72 ; 
Sir Thos., 8, 10-22, 71 ; Wm., 
22 ; Family, 67 ; Gould, 67 

Barnehouse, John, 30 

Battle, Abbot of, 124 

Battyn, Walter, 168 

Beauchamp, Thos., 127 

Beaufort, Margaret, 96 

Benet, Thomas, 29 

Bennett, Isabella, 38 ; Robert, 41 

Berkeley, Rev. S., 20 

Berry, Arms of, 47 ; Agnes, 48 ; 
Arthur, 48; Bartholomew, 15, 
169; Elizabeth, 48; John, 15, 
16,48; Mary, 47; Richard, 15 

Bertie, Lady A., 108 

Bickersteth, Ed. Bp. Exon, 58 

Bigglestone. Dorothy, 140 ; Peter, 

Bissett, Margaret, 85 

Bliss, John, 187 

Blount, Chas.107 ; Gertrude, io2 

Bluett, Roger, 53 

Bockerell, Arms of, 35 

Bodley, George, 11 ; John, 11 ; 
Sir Thos., 11 

Bohun, Lady Elizabeth, 94 ; 
Margaret, 93, 158 

Bon, Richard Le, Duke of Nor- 
mandy, 79 

Borringdon, Lord, t^ 

Bosco, 16 

Bouillon, Geoffrey de, 90 

Bourchier, Earl of Bath, 177; 
Sir Hy., 177 ; Rachel, 177 ; 
Wm., 177 

Bowden, Nichs., 65 

Bowring, Chas.. 68 ; Sir John, 68 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 



Boyes, 17 

Bradsell, Rev. F., 50 
Brantyngham, Bp. Exon, 21 
Braose, Eva, 190 ; Sir Wm^ 190 
Breerclyffe, Joan, 85 ; Richard, 

135 ; Wm., 85, gi 
Brewer, Arms of, 35 ; Grace, 37 ; 

Wm., Bp. Exon, 36, 37 
Brice, St., 122 
Brienne, John de, 96 
Brion, Arms of, 91 ; Baldwin, 

78,81; Rich., 78; Family, 78, 

81, 172, 181 
Bronescombe, Bp. Exon, 46 
Brooke, York Herald, 95 
Brooking, Mary, 160 
Browne, Sir Anthony, 102 
Budgell, Eustace, 168 
BuUer, Elizabeth, 160; James, 

160 ; Margaret, 104, 176 ; Sir 

Red vers, 105, 160 ; Richard, 



Camoys, Matilda, 95 ; Thos. 

Lord, 93 
Cantilupe, Wm. de, 190 
Carew, Ann, 38 ; George, 40 ; 

John, 163 ; Mary, 40 ; Thos. 

30, 163 ; Sir Thos., 170 
Carter, John, 158 
Carwithen, Rev. John, 63 
Gary, George, 32 ; Gertrude, 197 
Catherine, St., 36, 45 
Cecilia, St., Emblem of, 45 
Champernowne, Sir Arthur, 41 ; 

Philip, 41 
Chardon, Dr. John, 49 
Charles II., King of England, 55 
Chauvens. Andrew de, 84 
Cheney Family, 127-135 
Cheriton, Jerome, 135 
Chidenleigh, Arms of, 35 
Chievre, Wm., 12 
Chiseldon, John, 53 
Christenstowe, Arms of, 35 ; 

John de, 46 
Christine of St. Leonards, 61 ; 

Nigel, 61 
Clara, St., 29 

Clara, Amicia de, 85 ; Gilbert 

de, 85 
Clarus, St., 28 
Clement, John, 23 ; St., 28 
Cleveland, Ezra, 75, 149, &c. 
Clinton, Lady A., 34; Baron, 

34; Robert Lord, 34 
Clopton, 127 
Clotaire XL, King, 25 

ciovis I., 59 ; n., 25 

Cnut, King, 121 

Cobham, Jas. de, 174 

Coffin, Jas., 186; Richard, 186; 

The Coffins, 192 
Cola, 121 
Coles, Geo.. 181 
CoUyns or Collins, 66, 72 ; 

Elizabeth, 47 ; Sir John, 47 
Colsworthy, 70 
Confessor, The, 8 
Constantine, St., 26 
Conybeare, 138 
Cooke, 38 

Coplestone, Rev. J., 169 
Cornwall, Reginald, Earl of, 82 
Courtenay, Arms of, 18, 49, 79, 

85, 90, no, 118 

— Alianore, 150 

— Atho of, 76 

— Avis, 78, 90, 92 

— Baldwin (Emperor) 75, 96 

— Charles Roger de, 98 

— Edward, 62, 94, 95, 100, 102, 

106, 175 

— Elizabeth, 74, 76, 98, 100 

— Florence, 106 

— Francis, 107 ; Rev. F., 33 

— Helene, 99 

— Henry, 63, 99, loi ; Henry 

R., 108 

— Hugh, 18, 62, 92, 96, 100, 

106, 150 

— John, 92, 93, 100 

■— Josceline, 76,98 ^ n"^ 

— Katherine (Princess), 10 1 

— Margaret, loi, 102 

— Mary, 85 

— Matilda, 157 

— Maud, 104 

— Milo, 76 

— Peter, 74, 75, 175 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 



Courtenay, Prince Peter, 96, 98 

— Philip, 94, 106, 174 ; of 

Molland, 100 

— Prince Philip, 97 

— Reginald, 74, 91, I57 

— Robert, 61, 75, 92, 175; 

Emperor, 96 ; Great Butler 
of France, 98 

— Thomas, 96, 99 

— William, 94, 108, 149, 177 

— Yolande, 74, 75 

— Barons, 78, 178 

— Earls, 88, 178, and addi- 

tional page, 200 et seq. 

— Emperors, 74, 96 

— Family, 74, 118, 148, &c. 

— Marquess, loi 

— Viscounts, 108, 178 
Coutance, Bishop of, 36 
Courcy, Rich., 175 ; Robt., 175 
Cove, Wm., 23 

Coxe, Hy., 183 ; Hippesley, 183 

Crabbe, 48, 49 

Crosse, 54 

Crossing, 16 (see addtl. p., 200) 

Cryer, Thomas, 185 

Cudmore, Wm., 51 

Dabernon, Arms of, 35 
Dacre, Humphrey, 126 ; Ralph, 

Dagobert I., King, 25 
D'Aincourt, 78, 149, 162 
D'Albertona, 66 
Davies, Ed., 55 

Dcbina, Anne, 51 ; Francis, 51 
Decuman, St., 50 
Dennis or Denys, Arms of, 35 ; 

Ann, 33 ; Ed., 32 ; Sir Robt., 

32 ; Sir Thos., 30, 32, 35 ; 

Walter, 32 
Desmond, Earl of, 107 
Despenser, Hugh, 150 
Devon, Baldwin, Earl of, 184 
De Worthe & De la Worthe, 83 
Dickens, Charles, 182 
Dinham, 16, 17, 182 
Dodderidge, Elizabeth, 69 ; Sir 

John, 69 (see additional page) 

Doddescombe, Sir John, 87 
Dol, Arms of, 62, 84 ; Alice, 61, 

84, 89; Ralph, 61, 89 
Doneraile, 104 

Donne or Downe, Arms of, 35 
Donnevant, Wm., 147 
Donjon, Matilda, 76, 149 
Doughty, John, 177 
Drews, The, 12 et seq. ; Ed., 13 ; 

Rev. E., 73 ; Wm., Serjt., 14 
Ducke Family, 69, 70 ; Nichs., 

62 ; Rich., 56 
Duckenfield, Ralph, 51 
Duffield, Barnard, 154 
Dugdale, Sir Wm., 150 
Dunstan, St., Emblem of, 45 
Dunstanville,Avis,i67; Reginald 

de, 166 
Dupuis, Rev. E. J. G., 178 
Dymond, Robt., F.S.A., 3, 4 


Eastchurch, 66 

Ede, Elizabeth, 186 

Edessa, Counts of, 98 

Edith, Queen, 8 

Edmer, 10 

Edsy, 122 

Edward, Confessor, King, 8 ; I., 

9, 93 ; IV., 100, 158 
Egbert, King, 120 
Eleanor, Queen, 76, 77 
Eligiu8,St.,i8«^5«9.; Lifeof,24 
Elwill, Sir John, 129, 140 ; 

Family, 129 
Eneon, Bishop of Bangor, 174 
Elizabeth, Princess, 103; Queen, 

17 ; Arms of, 17 
Elyot, Johana, 132 
Ellicombe, 177 
Ethelred II., King, 11, 119 
Eugenius III., Pope, 46 
Euranacre, 144 
Evans, Nichs., 170 
Eveleigh, Alice, 72 
Excester, John of, 174 
Exon, Holland, Duke of, 164 

Fairfax. Sir Thos., 68, 163 
Fanshawe, Chas., 164 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 



Fitz-Ansgot, 145 ; Heloysa, 145 
Fitz-Baldwin, Wm., 144 
Fitz-Ede, Robt., 78, 162, alias 

Abrincis, 157 
Fitz-Gerald, Margaret, 85 
Fitz-Gilbert, Rich., 79, 80 
Fitz-Herbert, Herbert. 9 ; Matt- 
hew, 9 
Fitz-John, 22; Joan, 9; John, 9; 

Matthew, 9 ; Wm., 9 
Fitz-Osborne, 86 
Fitz-Turold, Richard, 193 
Florus, Prince, 74 
Floyer, 161 ; Anthony, 162 ; 

A. W. F., 162; Eric, 162; 

Rich., 162 ; Wm., 162, 168 
Ford, Sir Clare, 12 ; John, 45 ; 

Rich., 12 
Fortescue, Lord, 198 ; Lady M., 

Fortibus, Isabella de, 62, 86, 151 ; 

Thos. de, 86 ; Wm. de, 86 
Freemantle, 129 

Geare, Andrew, 23 
Genevieve, St., Emblem of, 45 
Gere, 180 
Gervis, Alice, 10; Nichs., 10; 

Walter, 10 
Gibbs, Wm., 166 
Gifford, Arms of, 35 ; Lord, 72 ; 

Robert, 72 ; Wearman, 73 
Gilbert of Clare, 80 
Giles, John, alias Hobbes, 55 
Githa, Queen, 123 
Giles, John, 55 ; Saint, 25 
Glanfeylde, Wm., 23 
Gloucester, Earl of, 85 ; Walter 

of, 190 
Godolphin, Arms of, 36 
Godwin,i23 ; Bishop, 5 ; Francis, 

50 ; Thos., 50 
Goldesley, Arms of, 35 
Gorges, Arms of, 47 ; Rose, 47 ; 

Susannah, 47 ; Thos., 47 
Gould, Ed., 160 ; Wm., 160, 170 
Grandisson, Bishop of Exon, 62, 

Granger, Edmund, 166 

Graves. Admiral, 163 ; Lord, 54 
Grenville, Sir Bevill, 17 ; Sir 

John, 17 
Grove, Hugh, 55 ; Ed., 135 
Gunhilda, 122 


Haldon, Lord, 183 
Halfdane, 120 

Hall, Bishop of Exon, 17. 134 
Halwell, 66 
Halse, 14 
Hamett, Jas., 198 
Hamilton, Duke of, 104 
Hamlyn, Arms of, 196, 197 

— Albert, 191 ; Alice, 194 

— Brian, 190 ; Geoffry, 190 

— Hugh, 194, 196 ; Hy., 193 

— James, 188, 196 ; Sir James, 


— John, 190, 194 ei seq. 

— Joseph, 196 ; Lucy, 190 ; 

Osbert, 194 

— Richard, 191, 193, ig^etseq. 

— Robert, 194 et seq, 

— Roger, 187, 194 ; Thomas, 

— Walter, 194, 195 

— Wm., 190, 194, 196 ; M.P., 

199 ; Sir Wm., 194 

— Mrs. Wm., 194, 197 

— Fane, 198 

— the Harper, 193 

— of Larkbeare, 194 

— of Paschoe, &c., 193 

— William, Bart., 198 

— of V/oolsery, 197 

— of Balun, 190 
Hancock, Ed., 69 
Hansford, 70 
Harding, Col., 43 
Harold, Earl, 123 
Hatch, Margery, 15 

Harris, Wm., 168; Harvey, 129 
Hayne, Rich., 199 
Haynes, John, 55, 134, 135 
Helena, St., Emblem ot, 45 
Henry of Cowick, 152 
Henry L, King of England, 8 ; 

VL, 158, at Exeter, 31; VIIL, 

38, 63, 101, &c. 

Digitized by V3OOQ IC 

Herbert, Henry Lord, 102 
Hereford, Earl of, 80, 93, 190 
Hereward, Sir Ed., 126 
Hill of Spaxton, 127 
Hoker, 4; John, i 
Holby, Christina, 65 
Holland, Roger, 163 ; Thos., 

94» 163 
Hooper, 71 

Hopkins, Ezekiel, 135 
Horsington, Wm., 55 ; Hubba, 

Hubert, 124; Archbp. C'bury,i32 
Hule, Henry, 185 
Hull, Arms of| 66 ; Geo., 62, 6g ; 

Hy., 66 ; John, 66 
Hurst, Agnes, 11 ; Wm., 11 
Hussey, 127 
Hutchinson, Wm., 11 
Hylleard, Thos., 55 

Ingle, Rev. John, 71 

Izacke, John, 23, 41, 56; Rich., 

41 ; Roger, 41 ; Sam., 41 ; 

Sebastian, 41, 47; Thos., 41 

Jake, John, 168 

James, St., 60 ; King James H., 

Jefford, Sir Thos., 53, 54 
Jenkins, 7, 18, 20, 21, 27, 53, 146, 

John, King of England, g 
Jones, John,72,i64;Winslow,26 
Jude, St., Emblem of; 45 


Katherine, Princess, loi 
Kelly, 9, 22 ; Arthur, 8,10 ; John, 

8, 38, 39, 56 ; Oliver, 8 ; Rich., 

8 ; Thos., 8 
Kent, Ed., Earl of, 94 
Kingwell, 154 
Kirkham Family, 128 

^ Lacy, Edmund, Bishop of Exon, 
i 146 

Index. 207 

Lambshead, Ann, 187; Roger, 

187, 200 
Lancaster, Avelina of, 86 ; Earl 

of, 86 
Land, John, 140 
Lanfranc, Archbp. C'bury,i45 
Launcells, 188 
Lavington, Andrew, 63, 66 
Lee, John, 56, 132 
Legh, Wm., 132 
Leighe, Hugh, 45 ; John, 23 ; 

Sir John, 45, 46 
Leofwin, 124 
Leonard, St., 59 
Lerkebeare, John de, 65 
L'Espec, Rich., 11; Walter, 11 
Leverbeare, Adam, 65 ; Rich., 65 
Lincoln, Earl ofi 34, 87 
Louis, King of France, 74^ 

IX., 97 
Loye, St., iS et seq. 
Lupus, St., 25 
Lye, John, 23 
Lysons, 18, &c. 


Main waring, Christopher, 51 ; 

Geo., 41, 51 ; Oliver, 51 
Mallett, 180 
Mallock, Arms of, 47 ; Roger, 47 : 

Rose, 47 ; Susannah, 47 
Mandeville, 9 ; Geoffry de, 8 ; 

Robert, 9,10; Roger, 9 
Marney, 66 

Marshal, Bishop of Exon, 52 
Martyn, Wm., 14 ; Nichs., 162 
Mary, Queen of England, 103 ; 

St., Canons of; 36 ; St. Mary 

the Virgin, 45 
Medley, Bp. of Fredericton, 166 
Mellent, Mabel de, 62, 85, 92 
Meschines, R. de, 124 
Michael, St., 153, 179 ; Emblem 

of, 45 
Milles, Dean of Exeter, 40 
Mitchell, Mrs., 58 
Mohun, Lord, 104; Reginald,i76 
Molton, Sir John, 126 ; Sir T., 

Monk, Adam, 199 ; General, 17, 

199 ; Hugh, 199 

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Montacute, Simon de, i8 

Moore. Elizabeth, 4?; H., 48 

Morcar. EarL 53 

Morley, Lord, 42 

Mortain or Mortaigne, Earl of, 

80, 83. 166, 191 
Mortimer. Eleanor, 95 ; Roger,95 
Mountjoy. Lord, 102 
Multon, Sir R., 124 
Mylleton, Alice, 39 ; Cecilia, 39 


N&mur, Marquis of, 97 
Neville, Hugh de, 174; John, 

92, 174; Rich., 175 
Nicholas (Pope), 63 
Northcote, George. 12 
Northleigh, Robt., 182 ; Stephen, 

Northmore, Jeffry, i66 ; Thos., 

164, 165 ; Wm., 166 
Noyon, Bishop of, 25 
Nut, Wenman, 57 

Okehampton, Matilda of, 78 . 

Oldreve, Wm., 176 

Oliver, Sir Ben., 164; Elizabeth, 

165 ; Francis, 165 ; Jane, 165 ; 

James, 17 ; Joseph, 165 
Oliver, Rev. G., d.d., 2, 4, 16, 


134, &c., &c. 
Ordulf, 192 

Orford, Geo., Earl of, 34 
Osmundville, W. de, 10, 53 
Owe, Godfrey, Earl of, 79 
Owen, St., 25 

Page, Joan, 132 
Painter, Elizabeth, 170 
Palaeologus, Michael, 75, 98 
Palerna, Peter de, 63 
Palk, Sir L. V., 183 
Pallig, 121 
Palmer, 42 

Pate, Mary, 159; Robt., 159; 

Susannah, 159 
Payne, 42 

Penriiddock, Col., 55 
Percy. Avis, 86 ; Ingelram, 86 
Peter, Prince of France, 74, 76 
Petre, Sir George, 12; John, 54, 

161 ; Lord, 12 ; Wm., 12 et 

seq.^ 161 
Phillpotts, Bishop of Exon, 48 
Pine, II 

Pinhoe, Vicar of, 122 
Pipard, Matilda, 194; Wm., 194 
Pitman, John, 177, 199 
Plaistowe, John, 175 
Plantagenet, Elizabeth, 93 ; 

Joan. 94 ; Katherine, 100 
Pole, Hugh de la, 40 ; Sir Wm., 9 
PoUei, Wm. de, 83 
Polsloe, Arms of^ 40 ; Prioress 

of, 39, 42 
Poltimore, Lord, 8, 12. 129 
Pomeroy, Jeffry de, 194 ; Rich. 

de, 80 
Pomfrett, Katherine, 66 ; Thos., 

Ponte, Arche, 85 
Poulton, Thos., 55 
Power, Walter, 62 
Pratelles, Abbess of, 92 
Prideaux, Mrs., 160 
Prous. Peter, 91 
Prudhome, John, 10 
Prynne, Mrs. F., 156 
Pycot, John de. 8 
Pytford, Charles, 63 

Quarr, Abbess of, 92 
Quivil, Bishop of Exon, 26 

Radforde, 69 ; John, 17 ; Law- 
rence, 66, 68 
Rainald, i6i3 
. Ralegh, Margaret, 66 ; Sir 
Walter, 69 
Ralph, 83 
Raven, The, 120 

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Redvers, Arms and Seal, 85, 8g; 
111^115; Baldwin de, 81, 87 , 
Earls of Devon, 79, 88 ; John 
de, 86; Rich., 81, 82, 84, 143, 
167 ; Wm. de, 61, 144 ; Family, 
43-61, &c. 

Reeves, Rich., 55 

Reginald, 83 

Reskymer, Anne, 105 

Reynell, 108, 135 ; Thos., 170 

Reynolds, 133, 138; J., 168 

Rhodes of Bellair, 49 

Richard II., King of England, 

27.. 94 
Richardson, Dr. Chas., ll.d., 183 
Risdon, 7, 16, &c. 
Robert, 83, 173 ; De Brion, 173 
Roger, 8 
Rolle, Arms of, 36 ; Bridget, 34 ; 

Denys. 33, 34 ; Florence, 33, 

34 ; Geo., 33, 34 ; Hy., 34 ; 

John, 33, 34 ; Lord, 34 ; Mark, 

33 ; Robt., 34 
Romara, Wm. de, 82 
Romele, Alice de, 77 
Roope, 129 

Roper, Rev. Rodwell, 71 
Rouen, Robt de, 148 
Rutland, Hy., Earl of, 107 


St. Clare, 66 

St. John, Agnes, 93, 150; Lord, 

93» 150 
St. Loye, 21, &c. 
Salisbury, Earl of, 18 
Sanders, John, 140 
Savoy, Avis ofi 85 
Sawie, Elizabeth, 163 
Seale, Anna, 164 ; John, 164 
Searle,.Ann, 57 
Segrave, Hugh de, 174 
Seldon, Lawrence, 169 
Seymour, Sir Ed., 13 
Sheppard Lydia, 105 ; Wm., 105 
Sheriff, Wm. the, 144 
Simons, Rev. J., 24 
Skinner, Walter, 57 
Smith, Elizabeth, 17 ; Sir Geo., 

1 1 , 16,17, 66, 183 ; Sir Nichs.,66 

Snell, John, 53 

Snow, Grace, 164 ; Simon, 164 

Somerset, Earl of Worcester,io2 

Sott, Peter, 65 

Spenser, H. de, 92 

Spicer of Wear, 12, 58 

Squier, Scipio, 40 

Stafford, Bishop of Exon, 64; 
Humphry of Southwick, 100 

Staneway, Hugh de, 174 

Stapledon, Bishop of Exon, 40 
I Stapleton, 10, 88 
! Stephen, King of England, 8, 9 

Steyner, Drewe, 29 
i Stone, 182 

Stoyle, Fidelis, 187, 200 
I Stretche, Sir John,i26 ; Thos.,126 

Strode, Sam., 168 

Sweyn, King, 121, 124 

Sydenham, Eleanor, 38 

I Taisson, Ralph de, 8 

I Talbot of Exeter, 66 ; Lord, 96 

j Tavistock, Robert, Abbot o^ 60 

^ Tilly, 9, 38 ; Wm., 11 

i Tirell Hy., 9, 22 ; Joan, 9, 22 ; 

I Wm., 9 

i Thomas, St., A rchbishop of Can- 

I terbury, 153 

Tolero, Ralph de, 10 

Tosti, 124 

Trefusis, Arms of, 33, 36 ; 
Louisa, 34 ; Mark, 34 

Tregoe, John, 199 

Tretherffe, John, 105 ; Thos., 105 
! Trelawny, John, 104, 176 

Trowbridge, Geo., 167 ; Family, 
! Tuckfield, Joan, 54 ; John, 54 
j Tyckell, Wm., 14 

I ^ 

I Uphome, Alice,45 ; Elizabeth,45 

Valans, Thos, 46, 50, 56 
Vallibus, Robert de, 124 
Vaux, John, 45 
Vener, John, 45 

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2IO Index. 

Vere, Hugh de, 92 ; Isabella, 92 
Vernon, Wm. de, 61, 151 ; Mary 

de, 61, 81, 147 
Veteripont, 188 
Veysey, Bishop of Exon, 29 
Viell, Grace, 17 
Vikings, The, 104, 105 
Vilvayne, John, 164 ; Peter, 164 ; 

Stephen, 164 
Vinecombe,Daniel,i99 ; Francis, 

Vivian, 104, 105 ; John, 176 
Vowler, 67 


Wadham, John, 53 

Wake, Ann, 187 

Walgrave, 127 

Walkey, Sam., 199 

Waller, Margaret, 108 ; Sir 

Wm., 108 
Walrond, 22 ; Hy., 10 ; Joan, 9, 10 
Waltheman, John, 55 
Warwick, Earl of, 41 
Wearman, Dorothy, 72 
Wease, Ed., 131 
Welsh, Rev. J., 154 
Westcote, 7, &c. 
Weston, John, 63 ; Stephen, 133 
Whatell, John de, 40 
White, Abbot, 160 ; James, 160 
Whiting, Agnes, 10 ; John, 10 

Wichin, 8, 12 

Wiger, Sir John, 10 

Wilcocks, Hy., 140 

Wilkins, Rich., 55 

William, " The Conqueror," 8, 

83, &c. 
William, the Porter, 80 
Williams, Arabella, 198 ; Thos., 

198 ; Wm., 165 
Willington, 87 
Willis or Willies, Ed., 55 
Wolland, Ann, 58 
Woolton, Bishop of Exon, 50 
Worth, Worthe, or Worthy — 

Alexander, 165 ; Alice, 39 ; 

Lady Avis, 83, 85 ; Rev. Chas., 

39 ; Francis, 165 ; Geo., 87 ; 

Hy., 165 ; Sir Hugh, 83, 87 ; 

John, 87 ; Otho, 39 ; Sir 

Reginald, 83 ; Rev. Reginald, 

87; Robert, 85, 87 ; Roger, 39; 

Thos., 39 
Wyat, Sir Thos., 103 
Wye, 180 

Ximenes, Sir Moris, 12 

Yard, 42; Gilbert, 168, 178 

Giles, 168 
Yeo, Agnes, 197 

PZymott^A : Printed, at the '* Frankfort Pre$$r 

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Formerly of H.M. 82nd Reoiment, 
Sometime Principal Assistant to the late Somerset Herald; 

Author of "The Suburbs of Exeter." 

**AsHBURTON AND ITS NEIGHBOURHOOD." Inclusivc of the Borough 
of Totnes, and of fourteen other parishes on the borders of 
Dartmoor. With Appendix. Fcp. 410, 1875. 

** Memoir of Walter Stapledon, Lord Bishop of Exeter, 
A.D. 1307." 8vo pamph., 1876. 

**The Manor and Church of Winkleigh," the Devonshire Seat 
of the Honour of Gloucester. Fcp. 8vo, 1876. 

*' Local Guide to Ashburton and Dartmoor." Pamph., small 
8vo, 1879. 

**John Vowell alias Hoker." Being Notes on a Manuscript at 
the College of Arms. Reprinted from Trans. Devon Associa- 
tion. Pamph., 8vo, 1882. 

** Berry Castle and its Ancient Lords." Ihid.^ 8vo, 1883. 

•* Notes Genealogical and Historical," concerning Bideford 
and the House of Granville. Ihid.^ 1884. Republished 8vo, 1884. 

" Thomas Chafe of Dodescote, Gentleman." /Wrf., 8vo, 1887. 

** Devonshire Parishes." Antiquities, Heraldry, and Family History. 
T>^o vols., super royal 8vo, 1887 and 1889. Dedicated to the 
Lord Bishop of London. 

**The Life of Lord Iddesleigh." Small 8vo, ist edit., 1887; 
2nd edit., 1887. 

" Practical Heraldry," or, an Epitome of English Armory. Illus- 
trated from Author's designs. Demy 8vo, 1888. 


m of Abstracts of Early Wills a 
d and Granted in the Diocese of 

Extracted, Arranged, and Annotated by Charles Worthy, Esq. 

Bflng a Collection of Abstracts of Early Wills and Administrations 
Proved and Granted in the Diocese of Exeter, 

LONDON : Bemrose & Sons, 23 Old Bailey ; and Derby. 


Z^t ^xdx<\ut ®eBm|)tion anb Recount of 
t^e Citg of (gireter. 

By JOHN VOWELL alias HOKER, Gent., 
Cbamberlain and M.P. for the said City. Flourished 1524-1601. 

Transcribed and Annotated by Charles Worthy. 

Apply to HENRY GRAY, 47 Leicester Square, London, W.C. 

y Google 

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A Few Short Extracts from Press Notices of 
Mr. Worthy's Works. 


"Its comprehensive title scarcely does justice to its contents. 
Much research has been expended. We have derived so much 
pleasure from the examination of this volume that we shall be very 
glad to welcome a successor of the same character." — North Devon 
youmaU Nov. gth, 1876. 

"An important contribution to our County History. Gleaned 
from the long-reaped fields with much care." — Western Times, 
"The Manor and Church of Winkleigh" — 

" The record contains accounts of the Manor, Parish, and Hundred,- 
the Church, the Vicars, and Charities, and of several families 
connected with the neighbourhood, notably of the Gidleys." — 
Western Morning News^ Sept. 12th, 1876. 
" Notes, Genealogical and Historical " — 

" Devonshire is fortunate in having sons who take so much 
intelligent interest in her antiquities, and Mr. Worthy has proved 
himself one of the best among thttn." — Exeter Gazette^ Nov. 14, 1884. 
" Life op Lord Iddesleigh " — 

** An opportune life of the late Foreign Secretary has been pub- 
lished by Mr. Charles Worthy, the Devonshire Historian." — The 
World, Jan. 19th, 1887. 

" We have here a brief but very accurate history of the Northcote 
Family." — England, Jan. 22nd, 1887. 
" Devonshire Parishes " — 

" A very painstaking and pleasant volume which will be read with 
great interest by the topogjrapher and genealogist." — Vanity Fair, 
June 19th, 1888. 

" Records of this kind are often a means of ensuring the pre- 
servation of valuable objects. Mr. Worthy has devoted considerable 
space to tracing the descents of manors, and the genealogies of the 
people who held them." — Saturday Review, July, 1889. 

" Mr. Worthy is an antiquarian of the highest repute. His 
history of * Devonshire Parishes ' will hand his name down to 
posterity as one of the greatest of our Devonshire historians." 
Exeter Daily Gazette, June 27th, 1889. 
" Practical Heraldry " — 

"A usefril and compendious guide to the fascinating study of 
heraldry, orderly and lucid, and amply illustrated from designs by 
the author."— iVo/<?s and Queries, Jan., 1889. 

" It was a happy thought of Mr. Worthy to combine a treatise 
on Heraldry witn an account of how to trace a pedigree and how 
to read an ancient record." — Saturday Review, Feb. i6th, 1889. 

"A successful effort to compile a practical work." — Morning Post^ 
March 5th, 1889. 

" Mr. Worthy has issued a useful work on a subject with which 
he is obviously well acquainted."— Athenaum, March i6th, 1889. 

" Himself a member of a very ancient family, he is a thorough 
master of his subject, and he may be accepted as not only a com- 
petent but a very agreeable mentor."— yo//n Bull, Jan., 1889. 

"As Principal Assistant to the late Somerset Herald, Mr. Worthy 
has presumably had opportunity of gaining his information at first 
hand, and should speak with some degree of authority." — Field, 
March 23rd, 1889. 

"^A readable book on Heraldry."— Pa// Mall Gazette, Jan., 1889. 

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