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SAMPFORD COURTENAY PROTESTATION RETURN

 

By the end of 1640, King Charles I had become very unpopular.  Parliament forced him to make changes in the Constitution which gave them a bigger say in how the country was governed. From then on, Parliament was split into two factions - Royalists (Cavaliers) who supported the King and Parliamentarians (Roundheads) who wanted political and religious reform.

 

On 3 May 1641, every Member of the House of Commons was ordered to make a declaration of loyalty to the crown. This was ratified next day by the House of Lords. They called it their Protestation against " an arbitrarie and tyrannical government" and another order was made that every Rector, Churchwarden and Overseer of the Poor had to appear in person before the JPs in their Hundred to make this Protestation Oath in person. It was to  be a declaration of their belief in the" Protestant religion, allegiance to the King and support for the rights and privileges of Parliament".

 

They then had to go back home to their own parish where any two of them were to require the same oath of allegiance from all males over the age of 18. The names of all who refused to make the oath were to be noted and assumed to be Catholics.

 

We have, in the Devon Protestation Returns, a set of amazing documents - something akin to a census even though no women or children are named.  A transcription is available in the West Country Studies Library in Exeter.

 

The Protestation Returns are arranged by parish.

Sampford Courtenay belonged to the Hundred of Balck Torrington

The original spelling has been preserved

John Aller Henry Berry William Crosse
Leonard Aller William Berry Roger Crossman
Robert Aller Laurence Blackford Ezekiel Cupper jun .
William Aller Edmund Bolte Stephen Curean
Samuel Allinge Emmanuel Bolte John Demaford jun
William Allinge Richard Bolte William Denaford
George Arscott Mark Bowden John Denaforde sen.
John Arscott John Brooke Lewis Dicker
John Arscott Richard Brooke Simon Downe sen
Richard Arscott Simon Brooke Simon Downe jun.
Richard Arscott William Brooke James Drew
Thomas Arscott William Brooke John Drew sen
William Arscott William Brooke John Drew jun.
William Arscott Geoffrey Cann John Drew
John Asscott Thomas Cann Richard Drew
John Avery Ezekiel Capper sen. Amos Elles
William Avery John Capper Giles Elles
Alexander Babb Fernando Collacott Henry Elles sen .
George Babb Joihn Collacott Henry Elles jun.
William Babb William Collinges James Elles sen.
William Babb George Combe James Elles jun.
John Babbedge Simon Cornishe John Elles
John Babedge William Cornishe John Elles jun
Richard Barker George Crocker John Elles
Roger Bayleye John Crocker Robert Elles
 
 
 
 
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