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The early 1600s were difficult years for Catholics.  Many were fined for refusing to attend Protestant Divine Service, these fines for recusancy were high and many families who adhered to their faith lost their influence when their finances became stretched.  Recusant Rolls are kept at the National Archives, Kew and date from 1591 to 1691. (E377 and E376)  The prominent St Minver Catholic families of Kempe and Penkevell were fined as recusants from the 1580’s onwards. 

St Minver Protestation Returns 1641/42

By 1641/2, on the eve of the English Civil War, all men aged 18 or above were required to sign an oath of loyalty to the true Reformed Protestant religion” and “the duty of my Allegiance, His Majesties Royal Person”, and alsoe the Power and Privileges of Parliament, the lawful Rights and Liberties of the Subjects”.    All of those who refused to sign were deemed to be recusants, (thus enabling the authorities to determine the number of Catholics in the country).

Cornwall has the most complete Protestation Returns of all the counties in England and Wales. There are 4 Parishes missing: Jacobstowe, St Austell, Truro and St Neot.  Many of those for the rest of the country perished in 1834 fire in the Houses of Parliament. The Returns form a comprehensive list of all the males in the parish over that age (and sometimes the women as well.)  It was another 200 years before such a widespread census was made (1841 census of all persons in a parish).

 In February 1642 most adult males in England and Wales (and in a few cases, women as well) took the Oath.  

The following is a transcription of a copy of the Protestation Return for St Minver which is kept in the records of the House of Lords.  The names appear in the same order and columns as they appear on the return. m = a mark made by each person who was unable to sign his name fully.  Sometimes the mark was a cross, sometimes the mark approximated the letter of their Christian or surname.  There were no comments about absences or refusal to sign.

 

Cornwall Mynfrey  The Protestation

I:  A:B: doe  in the presence of Allmightie God, promise, vowe and protest to mantayne,

and defend as farr as lawfully I may, with my life, power and estate, the true

reformed Protestant Religion, expressed in the doctrine of the Church of England,

against all Poperye and popish Inovacons, within this Realme of England, contrary

to the same Doctrine, and according to the dutie of my Alleagiance, His Maties royall  pson,

honor and estate, as alsoe the power and pryvileages of Parlyamt, the lawfull Rites

and Liberties of the Subiects, and every pson that maketh this ptestation, in whatsoever

hee shall doe in the lawfull Pursuance of the same; and to my power, and as far as lawfully

I may, I will oppose and by all good wayes and meanes endeavor to bring to condign Punishmt

all suche as shall, eyther by force, practise, Councells, plotts, Conspiracies, or otherwise, doe

any Thing to the contrary of anie thing in this present Protestation contayned: And

further that I shall in all iust and hoble wayes, endeavor to preserve the Union and peace

betweene the three Kingdomes of England, Scotland and Ireland: and neyther for hope,

feare, or other respect, shall relinquish this promise, vowe and protestacon.

 

 

Tho Adam  John Harris  Hen Pryor 
Jo Adam  Rawlyn Harris Tho Rancke 
Marke Adam Hen Harris  Richard Rawe
Hugh Adam  Wm Harris  John Rawe 
John Adrean Wm Harris jun  Jo Rawe 
John Anger  Tho Harris  Richard Rawlyn 
Gideon Auger  John Harvey Tho Rebous 
Francis Babb  John Helgin  John Roe
Olliver Ball Jo Hender Wm Roe
Digory Ball Fra Hender  Henry Roe 
Step Ball  John Hender Chrer Roby 
John Barry  Tho Hender   Frances Roch
Valent Bedlyme  Joell Hoper  Richard Rounsevall
Henry Bennett William Hoper  Richard Rounsevall
Thomas Bilkie  John Hoper  Pollidor Rounsevell
Robert Blake  William Hoskin  John Rounsevall 
Nic Bone  William Hoskin  Jo Rounsevall
Barnerd Bone  Henry Hocken John Rounsevall 
Nic Bone  John Hickes  Wm Rounsevall
Marke Braye  Wm Hicke  Samuell Sare 
Jo Brey  Thomas Hicks  George Shole 
Alexander Brewer John Jackett Wm Shole
John Brooke  Robert Jackett William Smyth 
John Burt  Henry James  Nicho Smyth 
William Burt Roger James  John Smyth 
John Burden  William James Jo Smyth
Win Carlyne  George Kent Tho Smyth sen
John Carveath  Hmfry Kent John Shole 
William Cary Jeremy Kent  Tho Smyth 
Fardinand Cater  Walter Kentt Wm Shole 
Richerd Chapman John Kneebone  Jo Silly
Savory Chyvall  Thomas Lange  Jo Silly jun
Tho Chyvall  Jo Lange  John Speare
John Clemens Rawebuck Lang ? John Sparnall
Thomas Clemens Gilbert Launder  James Sparnall 
Edward Clemens Humphry Launder William Spar...
Richard Clemens Jo Leage Thomas Span...
William Clemens Gregory Lobb  Francis Stephen 
Wm Clemence  Francis Mabblye  Rich Stephen 
Wm Collyn  Francis Mably  Tho Stephen 
Leonard Collyn Humfry Mably  John Stephen 
Wm Collyn Humfry Mably  William Stephen 
Wm Dally John Mably Jo Stephen 
William Dally John Mably  John Stephen
George Dayam Tho Mably  John Stephen 
Thomas Day Walter Mably  John Stone 
Tho Davie  William Mably  John Tennye
Chrer Dawe  Ambrose Marke  Ralfe Tennye
John Dingley  John Marke ? Beniamin Thomas
Richard Dingley Thomas Marke George Thomas 
Richard Downyng Phill Marten  Hum Thomas
Ralph Downyng Thomas Marten  Rich Tilly
Clemence Downing William Mill Jo Toser 
....Dunacomb  Degorie Mill John Trebell
Ben Dyer Antho Morris  Richard Trebell
Nichlas Euens Thomas Morrish Tho Trebell 
Willia Filph Tho Morris  Otes Trebell
Pollidor Filpe  William Morris  Robt Treffry
Ralph Ficke  Wynodeck Morris  Roger Treffry
John Ficke  Thomas Morish John Treffrye 
John Fradd  Natha Morris  William Treffry
Sidrack Fradd  Jo Morris  Peter Treneage 
Peter Frethy  Humfry Morris  Degory Treweene
Thos Furloe Wm Morris  John Udy 

From our Parish Church of Mynfery in Cornewall March 1st 1641

Forename Surname   Forename Surname   Forename Surname   Forename Surname   Forename Surname  
                           
John HARVEY   Jo SILLY    John ROE   Hmfry KENT   John DINGLEY  
John TENNYE   Jo  SILLY jun   Tho FFURLOE   Henry ROE m Richard DINGLEY  
Ralfe  TENNYE   Richard  CHAPMAN   Thomas  DAY   Ed GERRY m Willia SPAR… m
Richard  WROATH m Wm ROE   Willia DALLY m Nic BONE m Willia PAWE m
John  CLEMENS   Wm MULFORD m Willia JAMES m Jo BREY m Hugh ADAM m
Thomas  CLEMENS   Mark  BRAYE m John SPEARE m John WEARY   Wm  MORRIS m
Edward CLEMENS   John ROE   Henry HOCKEN m Allexander BREWER   Wm SHOLE m
Richard  CLEMENS   Tho MORRIS m Wm  DALLY m Willia POPE m Wm COLLYN m
? DUNACOMB m Tho DAVIE m Ralph VENICOMB m Tho CHYVALL m Jo ROUNSEVALL m
Natha OLLYVER m Jeremy KENT m John VENICOMB m Pollidor ROUNSEVELL   Christopher MOYLE  
ffrancis  BABB m Richard  RAWE m Clement VENICOMB m Oliver ROBY m Richard MOLD m
Willia SMYTH m John BURT m John SPARNALL m John CARVEATH m Jo BROOKE m
Barnerd BONE m Savory CHYVALL m John  FRADD m George THOMAS m Natha MORRIS m
John ADREAN m John  TREBELL   Sidrack FRADD m George SAYAM   Jo MORRIS m
Rawlyn HARRIS m Tho TREBELL m William CLEMENS   Richo. SMYTH m Wm  CARLYONE m
Roger  WOLCOCKE m Otes TREBELL m Francis MABLY m John KNEEBONE m Tho SMYTH m
William PEANE m William MILL   John BURDEN m John STONE   Chrer DAWE m
Gideon AUGER m Degorie MILL m Roger  TREFFRY m Thomas LANGE m Ambrose  GRAYE m
Samuell SARE m James SPARNALL m John TREFFRY m John SMYTH m Richard GRAYE m
Robert BLAKE m John MARKE   Roger  JAMES m Jo HENDER m William  PROFFITT m
Gilbert PEANE m Digory BALL   John HELGIN m Leonard COLLYN m Henry JAMES m
Beniamin THOMAS   Nic BONE m Jo HAMBLY m Wm COLLYN m John PEETERS  
Peter  TRENEAGE m Jo LEAGE m John  RAWE m Jo SMYTH m Charles PEETERS  
William CARY   Jo RAWE m Walter KENTT   Tho SMYTH sen   Henry PRYOR m
Jo ADAM m ffra HENDER m Tho BARRY m Richard TREBELL   Ffrancis ROCH  
Tho HENDER m John HENDER   John BARRY m Valent BEDLYME m Hugh PENKEVELL  
Degory TREWEENE   Willia HOPER m Francis STEPHEN m Hum THOMAS m Nicholas PENKEVELL  
George  KENT   John HOPER m Humphry LAUNDER   Richard DOWNYNG m John UDY m
Richard  ROUNSEVALL   John JACKETT m Willia STEPHEN m Ralph DOWNYNG m William  WEBBER  
Hen HARRIS m Tho REBOUS m Antho MORRIS m Clemence DOWNYNG   Wm CLEMENCE m
Jo TOSER m Willia MABLY m Rich STEPHEN m Robt TREFFRY m Rich PARKER m
William  TREFFRY   Tho MABLY m Sampson OLVER   Jo LANGE m Tho HARRIS m
John  MABLY   Edward GUY m Henry WILLIAMS m Lange Rawebuck  LANGE m Jo  PETEGREW m
Humfry MABLY m John GUY   William BURT   Humfrey MABLY m Ralph FFICKE m
Rich HAMBLY m Humf GUY m Willia MORRIS m John SHOLE m John FFICKE m
Jo HAMBLY m Anthony  GUY   Gregory  LOBB m Allexander HARRIS m Matthew MORRIS m
John STEPHEN m Michaell GUY m Wynodeck MORRIS m Jo STEPHEN m Thomas SPAN…  
Charles GYE   Henry GUY   Rich HAMBLY m Thomas MORISH   Peter FRETHY  
Willia HOSKIN m Richard  RAWLYN m John HARRIS m John STEPHEN m Willm GUY  
Walter MABLY m Richard  ROUNSEVALL   George  SHOLE m Henry BENNETT m Willia HOSKIN m
John GLIDUM   William FFILPH m Tho RANCKE m John STEPHEN m John ROUNSEVALL m
fardinand CATER m Pollidor FFILPE m Thomas  MARTEN m Humfry MORRIS m Steph BALL m
Tho ADAM m Tho STEPHEN m John AUGER m John ROUNSEVALL m Joell HOPER m
Robert JACKETT   Wm SHOLE m John  MABLY m Edw HARRIS m Constentine HAMBLY  
Thomas  POPE m Olliver BALL   John HICKES   Phill MARTEN m John BROOKE m
Thomas  BILKIE m Thomas  MARK m Wm HICKE m Ambrose  MARKE m Wm  HARRIS m
Thomas  MORRISH m Rich FILLIS   Richard  GULLING m William  GARROE m Wm  HARRIS jun m
Gilbert LAUNDER m Jo BLAKE m       Francis WEBB m Nicho OLVER m
Ric HALEY m Nicholas EVANS m             Wm  ROUNSEVALL  
Ben DYER m                   Thomas HICKS m
James PETTIGREW m                   Gregor  PEETER m
John PHILPE                     Francis  MABBLYE m
Mark ADAM m                        
                           
John WEALE   Minister                      
Thomas KENT   Churchwardens                    
William  HICKES   Churchwardens                    
Humfry GUY   Churchwardens                    
Richard THOMAS   Churchwardens                    
Thomas  MOYLE   Constables                    
Emanuel TENNY   Constables                    
Pollidor ROUNSEVALL   Constables                    
Ralph RAWLYN m Overseers                      
Thomas HAMMATT   Overseers                      
William BENNETT m Overseers                      
                           

 

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Page created August 2006