Powderham is a former manor on the coast of south Devon, England, situated within the historic hundred of Exminster, about 6 miles (9.7 km) south of the city of Exeter and adjacent to the north-east of the village of Kenton. It consists in part of flat, formerly marshy ground on the west bank of the River Exe estuary where it is joined by its tributary the River Kenn, the site of Powderham Castle, originally the fortified manor house of Powderham. On the opposite side of the Exe is the small village of Lympstone and almost opposite is Nutwell Court in the parish of Woodbury, formerly the castle or fortified manor house of the powerful mediaeval Dynham family.
In the Domesday Book of 1086, the tenant-in-chief of POLDREHA ~(Poldreham) is recorded as William II, Count of Eu (d.1096), listed under the heading: Terra Willelmi de Ow ("Lands of William of Eu"). Although William II, Count of Eu, held many estates elsewhere in England from the king (in Dorset, Wiltshire, Hampshire, etc. ), in Devon he was one of the lesser Devon Domesday Book tenants-in-chief with only two Devonshire holdings, Powderham and nearby Whitestone, both sub-infeudated to his tenant Ranulf. William II, Count of Eu, rebelled against King William II (1087-1100) and was executed.
The tenant family holding the manors of Powderham and Whitestone under the overlords, as did Ranulf in 1086, later adopted the surname de Powderham [ citation needed ]) and continued to hold under the de Bohun overlords until they lost the lands by escheat (see below).from their seat (as was usual
Following the execution of William II, Count of Eu, the manor of Powderham (together with Whitestone) becamea holding of the powerful de Bohun family, Earls of Hereford, tenants-in-chief and great landholders throughout England. Their tenant at both manors continued to be the "de Powderham" family until (as stated by Risdon (d.1640) ) after the death of John de Powderham it escheated to the then overlord Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford (1298–1322). Pole (d.1635) however states that the escheat was due to the attainder of John de Powderham, who held the lands during the reign of King Edward II (1307-1327). Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford gave Powderham and Whitestone as the marriage portion of his daughter Margaret de Bohun (d.1391) on her marriage to Hugh Courtenay, 2nd Earl of Devon (1303–1377), feudal baron of Okehampton, whose seats were Tiverton Castle and Okehampton. Margaret bequeathed Powderham in her will to her 4th son Sir Philip Courtenay (1340–1406), who thus became the founder of the junior Powderham branch of the Courtenay family.
The family of Courtenay "of Powderham", always known thus to distinguish it from its senior line the family of the Earls of Devon, was one of the most influential and best connected in Devon from the 15th century onwards. The family was descended from Sir Philip Courtenay (1340–1406), a younger son of Hugh Courtenay, 2nd Earl of Devon (1303–1377) but eventually itself in 1831 was officially recognised as having become in 1556 holder of the earldom inherited from its distant cousin.
Sir Philip Courtenay (1340–1406), 5th or 6th son of Hugh Courtenay, 2nd Earl of Devon (1303–1377) by his wife Margaret de Bohun (d.1391), daughter and heiress of Humphrey de Bohun (d.1322), Earl of Hereford by his wife Elizabeth Plantagenet, a daughter of King Edward I. He married Anne Wake, daughter of Sir Thomas Wake of Blisworth, Northamptonshire.
Richard Courtenay (d.1415), Bishop of Norwich (eldest son and heir). Much of his time was spent away from Powderham, which manor together with Chivelstone, he leased to his brother-in-law Sir Robert Cary (d. circa 1431) of Cockington, Devon, 12 times MP for Devon. Following the bishop's death at the siege of Harfleur, leaving his 11-year-old nephew Philip Courtenay as his heir, Cary was a co-grantee of the wardship of 16 Courtenay manors in Devon and Somerset at a farm of 410 marks per annum.
Sir Philip Courtenay (1404–1463) (nephew). He was the eldest son of Sir John Courtenay (1383–1419) (who had predeceased his elder brother Bishop Richard Courtenay), by his wife Joan Champernoun, daughter of Sir Richard Champernoun of Modbury, Devon. He married Elizabeth Hungerford, daughter of Walter Hungerford, 1st Baron Hungerford (d.1449), KG, by Katherine Peverell. His younger son was Peter Courtenay (d.1492) Bishop of Exeter. His second son was Sir Philip Courtenay (b.1445), sometime MP and Sheriff of Devon in 1471, who was bequeathed by his mother the Devon manor of Molland, where his line of the family continued until 1732.
Sir William Courtenay (died 1485) (son), Sheriff of Devon in 1483.He married Margaret Bonville, daughter of William Bonville, 1st Baron Bonville (d.1461). His second son was Edward Courtenay (died 1 March 1509/10) of Landrake, Cornwall, whose monumental brass survives in Landrake Church, who married Alice Wotton (d.1533), daughter and heiress of John Wotton of Wotton in Landrake. Their son and heir was Edward Courtenay, the husband of Margaret Trethurffe, daughter and co-heir of Thomas Trethurffe of Trethurffe in Ladock, Cornwall. The brass is inscribed: "Pray for the soule of Edward Cowrtney esquyer secunde son of Sir William Cowrtney Knight of Povderam, which dyed the fyrst day of March Anno domini MVCIXo on whose soule ihesu have merci".
Sir William Courtenay (1451–1512) (son). He married Cecily Cheyne, daughter of Sir John Cheyne of Pinhoe. His younger son James Courtenay founded a branch of the family seated at Upcott, Cheriton Fitzpaine,Devon, formerly the seat of the prominent Devonshire lawyer and MP Nicholas Radford (d.1455), notoriously murdered there by henchmen of Thomas de Courtenay, 5th/13th Earl of Devon (1414–1458), of Tiverton Castle, which event was a precursor to the private Battle of Clyst Heath (1455), between Thomas de Courtenay, 5th Earl of Devon (1414–1458) and his great rival William Bonville, 1st Baron Bonville (1392–1461).
Sir William Courtenay (1477–1535) "The Great"(son). MP for Devon 1529, Sheriff of Devon 1522, 1525-6, 1533-4; Esquire of the Body to King Henry VIII, whom he accompanied to the Field of the Cloth of Gold. He married twice, firstly to Margaret Edgecombe, daughter of Sir Richard Edgecombe MP of Cotehele, Cornwall, widow of William St. Maure; secondly to Mary Gainsford, daughter of Sir John Gainsford of Crowhurst, Surrey.
Sir William Courtenay (1527–1557), de jure 2nd Earl of Devon, (grandson). He was the son of George Courtenay (d.1533) (who predeceased his own father) by his wife Catherine St Leger, daughter of Sir George St Leger. He married Elizabeth Paulet, daughter of daughter of John Paulet, 2nd Marquess of Winchester. A retrospective decision of the House of Lords in 1831 determined that he had succeeded his sixth cousin once removed Edward Courtenay, 1st Earl of Devon as de jure 2nd Earl of Devon in 1556. He died at the storming of Saint Quintin in France in 1557.
Sir William Courtenay (1553–1630), de jure 3rd Earl of Devon (son).
Francis Courtenay (1576–1638), de jure 4th Earl of Devon (son)
Sir William Courtenay, 1st Baronet (1628–1702) de jure 5th Earl of Devon (son). He married Margaret Waller (d.1694), daughter of Sir William Waller, a parliamentary general in the Civil War, and eventual heiress of her maternal grandfather Sir Richard Reynell (d.1633) of Forde, Wolborough, Devon, where he had built a new mansion in about 1610. Forde became the couple's main home, possibly due to the damage suffered by Powderham Castle in 1645 during the Civil War. Sir William and his wife were buried at Wolborough and several of their children were baptised there.
Sir William Courtenay, 2nd Baronet (1675–1735) de jure 6th Earl of Devon (grandson). He was the son of Col. Francis Courtenay (d.1699), MP for Devon 1689-99, who predeceased his own father (the 1st Baronet), by his wife Mary Boevey, daughter of William Boevey (d.1661), of Netherlandish Huguenot descent, of Flaxley Abbey, Gloucestershire. Mary's brother was John Boevey (d.1706) who refers to himself in his will dated 6 March 1703as "John Boevey of Powderham Castle". He directed his body to be buried in the north aisle of Powderham Church "near the monument there erected". He further denied "my executor (who was his nephew William Courtenay (d.1735) of Powderham)...to bestow and lay out the summe of fifty pounds in erecting a monument near the place of interrment in such manner as my executor shall think fit". No such monument survives. He left £10 each to his nieces Elizabeth, Mary, Lucy and Isabella Courtenay for mourning clothes. He also bequeathed them each the sum of £30 to buy a diamond ring each to be worn in his memory. He bequeathed to Sir William Courtenay his nephew the sum of £100 and also made him his residuary beneficiary.
William Courtenay, 1st Viscount Courtenay (1710–1762) (son), de jure 7th Earl of Devon
William Courtenay, 2nd Viscount Courtenay (1742–1788) (son) de jure 8th Earl of Devon
William Courtenay, 9th Earl of Devon & 3rd Viscount Courtenay (1768–1835) (son) In 1831 he successfully established his right to the Earldom of Devon created in 1553, thus retrospectively making his ancestors Earls of Devon de jure. He died unmarried, when the viscountcy became extinct,but not the earldom or baronetcy. Henceforth the descent of Powderham follows that of the Earldom of Devon.
William Courtenay, 10th Earl of Devon (1777–1859) (second cousin)
William Reginald Courtenay, 11th Earl of Devon (1807–1888) (son)
Edward Baldwin Courtenay, 12th Earl of Devon (1836–1891) (son) Died unmarried
Henry Hugh Courtenay, 13th Earl of Devon (1811–1904) ( uncle) Rector of Powderham. Married Anna Maria Leslie, daughter of Henrietta Countess of Rothes.
Charles Pepys Courtenay, 14th Earl of Devon (1870–1927) (grandson) Son of Henry Reginald, Lord Courtenay (d.1898), a barrister and JP, Poor Law inspector for the Western District, who predeceased his own father, by his wife Lady Evelyn Pepys, daughter of Charles Christopher Pepys, 1st Earl of Cottenham (1781–1851). Died unmarried.
Henry Hugh Courtenay, 15th Earl of Devon (1872–1935) (brother) Rector of Powderham. Died unmarried.
Frederick Leslie Courtenay, 16th Earl of Devon (1875–1935) (brother) Rector and Mayor of Honiton. Married Marguerite Silva, daughter of John Silva of Itchen Abbas, Hampshire.
Charles Christopher Courtenay, 17th Earl of Devon (1916–1998) (son)
Hugh Rupert Courtenay, 18th Earl of Devon (1942-2015) (son).
Charles Courtenay, 19th Earl of Devon (b. 1975). The Earl is a practising attorney and is married to the American actress Alison Joy Langer. His heir apparent is his only son Jack Haydon Langer Courtenay, Lord Courtenay (b. 2009).
The title of Earl of Devon was created several times in the English peerage, and was possessed first by the de Redvers family, and later by the Courtenays. It is not to be confused with the title of Earl of Devonshire, held, together with the title Duke of Devonshire, by the Cavendish family of Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, although the letters patent for the creation of the latter peerages used the same Latin words, Comes Devon(iae). It was a re-invention, if not an actual continuation, of the pre-Conquest office of Ealdorman of Devon.
Powderham Castle is a fortified manor house situated within the parish and former manor of Powderham, within the former hundred of Exminster, Devon, about 6 miles (9.7 km) south of the city of Exeter and 1⁄4 mile (0.4 km) north-east of the village of Kenton, where the main public entrance gates are located. It is a Grade I listed building. The park and gardens are Grade II* listed in the National Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.
Hugh Rupert Courtenay, 18th Earl of Devon, DL, styled as Lord Courtenay until 1998, of Powderham Castle in Devon, was a British peer, landowner, and surveyor.
The Courtenay family of Tremere was a cadet line of the prominent Courtenay family seated at Powderham in Devon, itself a cadet line of the Courtenay Earls of Devon of Tiverton Castle, feudal barons of Plympton and feudal barons of Okehampton.
Sir Hugh de Courtenay, 2nd/10th Earl of Devon, 2nd Baron Courtenay, feudal baron of Okehampton and feudal baron of Plympton, played an important role in the Hundred Years War in the service of King Edward III. His chief seats were Tiverton Castle and Okehampton Castle in Devon. The ordinal number given to the early Courtenay Earls of Devon depends on whether the earldom is deemed a new creation by the letters patent granted 22 February 1334/5 or whether it is deemed a restitution of the old dignity of the de Redvers family. Authorities differ in their opinions, and thus alternative ordinal numbers exist, given here.
Margaret de Bohun, Countess of Devon was the granddaughter of King Edward I and Eleanor of Castile, and the wife of Hugh Courtenay, 10th Earl of Devon (1303–1377). Her seventeen children included an Archbishop of Canterbury and six knights, of whom two were founder knights of the Order of the Garter. Unlike most women of her day, she received a classical education and was a lifelong scholar and collector of books.
William Courtenay, 1st Viscount Courtenay, also de jure 7th Earl of Devon, was a British peer. He was the son of William Courtenay, 6th Earl of Devon and 2nd Baronet Courtenay, and Lady Anne Bertie.
Margaret Grey was a Cambro-Norman noblewoman, the daughter of Reginald Grey, 3rd Baron Grey de Ruthyn, a powerful Welsh Marcher Lord, who was the implacable enemy of Owain Glyndŵr.
Sir William Courtenay, 1st Baronet was an English politician.
Sir Philip Courtenay of Powderham, Devon, was the senior member of a junior branch of the powerful Courtenay family, Earls of Devon.
Sir Philip Courtenay, of Powderham, Devon was the fifth son of Hugh Courtenay, 10th Earl of Devon (1303–1377). He was the founder of the cadet dynasty known as "Courtenay of Powderham", seated at the manor of Powderham, until then a former Bohun manor of little importance, whilst the line descended from his elder brother, the Earls of Devon of the mediaeval era, continued to be seated at Tiverton Castle and Okehampton.
Sir William Courtenay, 2nd Baronet of Powderham Castle, Powderham, Devon, was an English landowner, a leading member of the Devonshire gentry and Tory politician who sat in the English House of Commons from 1701 to 1707 and in the British House of Commons almost continually from 1707 to 1735.
Francis Courtenay, de jure 4th Earl of Devon, of Powderham, Devon, was an English Member of Parliament. In 1831 he was recognised retrospectively as having been de jure 4th Earl of Devon, having succeeded his father in 1630.
Sir William Courtenay"The Great", of Powderham in Devon, was a leading member of the Devon gentry and a courtier of King Henry VIII having been from September 1512 one of the king's Esquires of the Body. He served as Sheriff of Devon three times: from February to November 1522, 1525/6, and 1533/4. He was elected Knight of the Shire for Devon in 1529.
The Manor of Molland was a medieval manor in North Devon, England. It was largely co-terminous with the existing parish of Molland, in which is situated the village of Molland. More accurately it consisted from the earliest times of two separate manors, held from separate overlords, later known as Molland-Bottreaux and Molland-Champson.
The Bohun swan was a heraldic badge used originally in England by the mediaeval noble family of de Bohun, Earls of Hereford, and Earls of Essex.
The manor of Bideford in North Devon was held by the Grenville family between the 12th and 18th centuries. The full descent is as follows:
Great Fulford is an historic estate in the parish of Dunsford, Devon. The grade I listed manor house, known as Great Fulford House, is about 9 miles west of Exeter. Its site was said in 1810 to be "probably the most ancient in the county". The present mansion house is Tudor with refurbishment from the late 17th century and further remodelling from about 1800. The prefix "Great" dates from the late 17th century and served to distinguish it from the mansion house known as "Little Fulford" in the parish of Shobrooke, Devon, about 8 miles to the north-east, also owned briefly by Col. Francis Fulford (1666–1700), as a result of his marriage to the heiress of the Tuckfield family. Great Fulford has been the residence of the Fulford family, which took its name from the estate, from the reign of King Richard I (1189–1199) to the present day. There are thus few, if any, families in Devonshire of more ancient recorded origin still resident at their original seat. In 2004 the estate comprised 3,000 acres.
Upcott is an historic manor in the parish of Cheriton Fitzpaine, Devon. The manor house, known as Upcott Barton is a mediaeval grade II* listed building notorious in the history of Devon as the place where in 1455 the murder of the lawyer Nicholas Radford by a mob directed by the Earl of Devon during the Wars of the Roses took place. In the grounds is a reproduction of an Iron Age roundhouse built circa 2014.
Lyneham in the parish of Yealmpton in Devon, is an historic estate. The surviving grand mansion house known as Lyneham House is a grade I listed building. It was built c.1699-1703 by Sir Courtenay Croker, MP for Plympton Morice in 1699. A drawing of Lyneham House dated 1716 by Edmund Prideaux (1693–1745) of Prideaux Place, Padstow, Cornwall, survives at Prideaux Place. It shows formal gardens in front with flanking pavilions and an orangery.