William Bourchier, 3rd Earl of Bath
Effigy of William Bourchier, 3rd Earl of Bath (died 1623), wearing an earl's coronet and robes with ermine collar with sapphire clasp, St Peter's Church, Tawstock, Devon
|Born||29 September 1557|
|Died||12 July 1623|
|Resting place||St. Peter's Church, Tawstock, Devon|
|Successor||Edward Bourchier, 4th Earl of Bath|
|Spouse(s)||Mary Cornwallis |
Lady Elizabeth Russell
|Children||Richard Bourchier, Lord FitzWarin |
Edward Bourchier, 4th Earl of Bath
|Parent(s)||John Bourchier, Lord FitzWarin |
William Bourchier, 3rd Earl of Bath (29 Sep 1557 – 12 July 1623) was Lord Lieutenant of Devon. His seat was at Tawstock Court, three miles south of Barnstaple in North Devon, which he rebuilt in the Elizabethan style in 1574, the date being sculpted on the surviving gate house.
He was born on 29 September 1557 in Devon, the eldest son of John Bourchier, Lord FitzWarin (died 1557) (who died shortly after his birth, having predeceased his own father John Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Bath (died 1561)) by his wife Frances Kitson (died 1586),a daughter of Sir Thomas Kitson (died 1540) of Hengrave Hall, Suffolk and Margaret Donnington, Countess of Bath. Her elaborate monument with effigy exists in Tawstock Church. William succeeded to the earldom on the death of his grandfather, John Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Bath in 1561.
He married twice:
He and his wife, Elizabeth, are buried in the choir of St. Peter's Church, Tawstock, Devon, where one can see their elaborate monument.
A magnificentand sumptuous monument exists in St Peter's Church, Tawstock, incorporating recumbent effigies of William Bourchier, 3rd Earl of Bath and his wife Elizabeth Russell. It was restored in 1999 by Lawrence and Sue Kelland, mainly to replace the iron bands within the alabaster which threatened to rust and thereby expand to crack the stone. The iron was replaced with stainless steel and the monument was repainted. Kneeling to the left is their adult son and an infant child, whilst on the right kneels their adult daughter with a recubant infant at her side. Two vines grow up on either side of the main effigies, on the dexter inhabited with heraldic escutcheons showing five generations of ancestry described by five shields of Bourchier impaling the arms of their wives. On the sinister vine are shown five similar escutcheons describing the ancestry of Elizabeth Russell over five generations as follows, from ground upwards:
At the top above the recumbent couple the two vines meet at which point is displayed an escutcheon of Bourchier impaling Russell. On the top of the cornice to the dexter is shown a large escutcheon of the Bourchier arms, on the sinister the arms of Russell. Above the couple is a black tablet inscribed in capital gold lettering with an epitaph. On the base is a further tablet containing a mix of anagram, chronogram and epigram, to be deciphered by the viewer. At the feet of the Earl is his crest of the head in-profile and shoulders of a bearded oriental man wearing a Phrygian cap with pointed tasselled top flopped over. At the feet of his wife is a goat statant argent armed and unguled or, the crest of Russell, now with horns broken off.
The Bourchier crest was explained by John Weever (died 1632) as follows:
"In the hall of the manor house of Newton Hall in this parish (i.e. Little Dunmow, Essex) remaineth in an old painting two postures, the one for an ancestor of the Bourchiers, combatant with another, being a pagan king, for the truth of Christ, whom the said Englishman overcame and in memory thereof his descendants have ever since bore the head of the same infidel as also used the surname BOWSER, as I had it out of the collections of Augustin Vincent, Windsor Herald, deceased"
The Phrygian cap is an iconographical symbol of Oriental kings.
Above the couples' effigies is a black rectangular tablet inscribed in capital gold lettering with an epitaph in Latin as follows:
Ae(ternae) S(acrum). Lege viator quae magnatum saxa rarissime loquuntur: vir probus et nobilis uter(que) hic situs est. Guilielmus Bourgchier Comes Bathoniensis aeternitatem apud mortales meritus. Suavissimo connubio conjunxit nobilitatem et virtutem utranq(ue) dignitatem in omnibus constanter retinuit et ornavit. Vixit in hac ipsa Devonia cui datus est praefectus et provinciam triginta plus minus annis integerrime administravit. Deum tam privatis quam publicis officiis religiosissime coluit. Magnificum exemplum beneficentiae et hospitalitatis pauperumq(ue) et oppressorum acerrimus patronus. Deniq(ue) cum inoffensae foelicitatis cursum ad senium usq(ue) produxisset decessit e vivis incens et aeternum Devoniae suae desiderium 12.o Julii anno salutis 1623 aetatis vero suae 65.o. Uxorem duxit lectissimam foeminam sociam huius sepulchri D(omi)nam Elizabetham Francisci Comitis Bedfordiensis filiam ex qua genuit Joh(an)em Robertum et Edwardum filios et Franciscam filiam e quibus Edwardum modo Comitem Bathoniensem solum reliquit superstitem ipsum clarissimae familiae suis quoq(ue) virtutibus et foelicissimo conjugio futurum ornamentum. Hoc fac et Vives
Translated into English thus:
"Sacred to eternity. Read O Traveller what (grave)stones of the great very seldom speak: Here lies a man both upright and noble, William Bourchier Earl of Bath, deserving of eternal memory amongst men. By a most pleasing marriage he joined virtue to nobility and in everything unswervingly preserved and adorned the dignity of both. He lived in this very county of Devon of which he was given the prefecture and for more or less thirty years he administered his province with the greatest integrity. He honoured God most religiously as well in private as in public duties. He was a great example of benificence and hospitality and a most keen patron of the poor and oppressed. At last when he had led on his life even to old age he departed from the living, to the great and lasting sorrow of Devon, on the twelfth of July in the year of Redemption 1623 and indeed in the 65th of his age. As wife he married the most select woman, his companion in this sepulchre, Elizabeth, daughter of Francis, Earl of Bedford, with whom he begat sons John, Robert and Edward and Frances a daughter, out of whom he left behind him only Edward, late Earl of Bath, himself about to be an ornament to his most famous family also in his virtues and from his most happy marriage. This do and thou shalt live"
On the base of his monument appears a cryptic tablet. It comprises separate elements of anagram, chronogram and epigram. Top: Bathon(i)ae Com(i)ti Devonae praefecto memoriae ergo ("To the memory of the Earl of Bath therefore to the prefect (i.e. Lord Lieutenant) of Devon"). Beneath this line is in the centre an inscribed skull and cross-bones, with to its left the image of a phoenix rising from a fire above which is Morior Orior ("I am dead, I shall arise") above which is inscribed on a scroll the well-known Roman epithet: Mors mihi lucrum ("Death to me is reward"). On the right side of the skull is an image of a circular dial inscribed around the circumference with the first two letters of the 12 months of the year. The top-most month, which is crowned, is IV i.e. JU for July, the month of his death. Above is inscribed: Finis Coronat ("the end crowns"), above which is inscribed on a scroll the French motto of Bourchier: Bon temps viendra ("The right time will come"). Within the skull is written on the top line grama, to which word three other words point from above the skull, ana-, chrono- and epi- (all Greek words in Latin form). These denote to the reader the presence of anagrams, chronograms, epigrams and other puzzles within the tablet. In the skull below the word grama are the two Latin words se and pul, and on the two bones which intersect behind the skull are written 4 more Latin words: ad, in, tum, and crum, which may all be combined together to form the sentences: in sepulcrum ad sepultum ("into the grave in order to be buried") or in sepultum ad se pulcrum ("in the act of burial one's-self (is made) beautiful"). Below is the anagram, on the top line the words Gulielmus Bourchier ("William Bourchier"), below which is the indicator ana-: and the name's Latin anagram Luge (si ob lucrum heri) ("mourn if on account of the profit of yesterday"). Below is a Latin epigram with some words in capitals, which may relate to a chronogram or other word-game: Quid sibi vult tumulus quidve haec insignia luctus est comes in superos ecce locumo tenens quare fles Devonia vel Bathonia quare ("If you wish to know what is this pile or why this great mourning, the Earl behold is above as place-holder (lieutenant), as weeps Devon and Bath"). Below is a chronogram: "eXIIt en bon teMps nVnCo VIenDra patet" (exiit en bon temps nunc (o?) viendra patet) a mixture of limited sense in Latin and the French motto of Bourchier, meaning "he went in good time now he shall come he seeks". When the capital Roman numerals are added together individually they make 1,623, the year of his death. Underneath is a further possibly cryptic epigram, with some words in capitals: Julius hoc mensis fuit Augustissimus anno atq(ue) secunda decem junge secunda dies non amor invidia est dolor euge lege alme viator et disce exemplo vivere: disce more sic cecivit (cecidit?) not elevit, translated as "The month of July was the most august in this year and the following day...is hatred not love, well-done! read O Traveller and teach by (his) example (how ) to live: teach (how) to die, thus he has fallen he has not arisen". At the end are two monograms: "R...E" and "AR".
A 1599 escutcheon in Weare Giffard Hall (about 8 miles south-west of Tawstock), then a seat of the Fortescue family, displays the arms of William Bourchier, 3rd Earl of Bath, with another two showing the Royal arms and those of Edward Russell, 3rd Earl of Bedford, Custos Rotulorum of Devon.
The Office of the Lord Lieutenant was created during the reign of Henry VIII (1509–1547), taking over the military duties of the Sheriffs and control of the military forces of the Crown. From 1569 there was provision for the appointment of Deputy Lieutenants, and in 1662 the Lord-Lieutenant was given entire control of the militia. The Forces Act of 1871 transferred this function back to the Crown, and in 1921, the office lost its power to call upon men of the County to fight in case of need. Since 1711 all the Lord Lieutenants have also been Custos Rotulorum of Devon.
Arlington was a manor, and is a village and civil parish in the North Devon district of Devon in England. The parish includes the villages of Arlington and Arlington Beccott. The population of the parish is 98.
William Bourchier, 1st Count of Eu, was an English knight created by King Henry V 1st Count of Eu, in Normandy.
Sir John Bourchier, 2nd Earl of Bath, PC was an Earl in the peerage of England. He also succeeded to the titles of 12th Baron FitzWarin, Baron Daubeney and 4th Count of Eu.
Sir Bourchier Wrey, 6th Baronet of Tawstock, Devon, was a Member of Parliament for Barnstaple, Devon, in 1747–1754. The manor of Tawstock, about two miles south of Barnstaple, had been since the time of Henry de Tracy the residence of the feudal barons of Barnstaple, ancestors of the Wrey family.
Tawstock is a village, civil parish and former manor in North Devon in the English county of Devon, England. The parish is surrounded clockwise from the north by the parishes of Barnstaple, Bishop's Tawton, Atherington, Yarnscombe, Horwood, Lovacott and Newton Tracey and Fremington. In 2001 it had a population of 2,093. The estimated population in June 2019 was 2,372.
Henry Bourchier, 5th Earl of Bath of Tawstock in Devon, was an English peer who held the office of Lord Privy Seal and was a large landowner in Ireland in Limerick and Armagh counties, and in England in Devon, Somerset and elsewhere. Following his inheritance of the Earldom of Bath from his distant cousin, in 1637 he moved from his native Ireland to Tawstock Court in Devon, a county previously unknown to him where he knew few people. As the most senior resident nobleman in the county he was destined to play the leading role for the Royalist cause in Devon during the Civil War but before the outbreak of hostilities he was captured in 1642 and imprisoned by the Parliamentarians before he had organised his local forces. In the opinion of Clarendon he was a man of "sour-tempered unsocial behaviour" who "had no excellent or graceful pronunciation" and "neither had or ever meant to do the king the least service".
Sir Thomas Kitson was a wealthy English merchant, Sheriff of London, and builder of Hengrave Hall in Suffolk.
Sir John III Chichester of Hall was Member of Parliament for Lostwithiel in Cornwall in 1624.
Weare Giffard is a small village, civil parish and former manor in the Torridge district, in north Devon. The church and manor house are situated 2 1/2 miles NW of Great Torrington in Devon. Most of the houses within the parish are situated some 1/2-mile east of the church. The church is situated on a hillside to the north and slightly above the wide and flat valley floor of the River Torridge. The Church of the Holy Trinity and the adjacent Weare Giffard Hall are designated members of the Grade I listed buildings in Devon.
Sir John Chichester (1519/20-1569) of Raleigh in the parish of Pilton, near Barnstaple in North Devon, was a leading member of the Devonshire gentry, a naval captain, and ardent Protestant who served as Sheriff of Devon in 1550-1551, and as Knight of the Shire for Devon in 1547, April 1554, and 1563, and as Member of Parliament for Barnstaple in 1559, over which borough his lordship of the manor of Raleigh had considerable influence.
Colonel John Giffard (1602–1665), of Brightley in the parish of Chittlehampton, Devon, England, was a Royalist leader during the Civil War. Giffard commanded the Devon Pikemen at the Battle of Lansdowne in 1634, in which his 3rd cousin the Royalist commander of the Cornish forces Sir Bevil Grenville (1596-1643) was killed in heroic circumstances. Giffard's loyalty to the Royalist cause led to him being proposed in 1660 as a knight of the intended Order of the Royal Oak. He was personally known to the biographer John Prince (1643–1723) who included him as one of his Worthies of Devon. He was buried in Chittlehampton Church, where his small kneeling effigy survives on the base of the monument he erected in 1625 to his grandfather.
John Northcote (1570-1632) of Uton and Hayne, Newton St Cyres, near Crediton, Devon, was a member of the Devonshire gentry, lord of the manor of Newton St Cyres, who is chiefly known to history for his artistically acclaimed effigy and monument in Newton St Cyres Church. Little or no documentary evidence concerning his career as a soldier or county administrator has survived, but either he or his identically named son was Sheriff of Devon in 1626, his own tenure of that office being suggested by the baton or staff of office held in the hand of his effigy. Such a baton is also held by the effigy of Lord Edward Seymour (d.1593), Sheriff of Devon in 1583, in Berry Pomeroy Church. He was ancestor of the Earls of Iddesleigh.
The feudal barony of Bampton was one of eight feudal baronies in Devonshire which existed during the mediaeval era, and had its caput at Bampton Castle within the manor of Bampton.
The Bourchier knot is a variety of heraldic knot. It was used as a heraldic badge by the Bourchier family, whose earliest prominent ancestor in England was John de Bourchier, a Judge of the Common Pleas, seated at Stanstead Hall in the parish of Halstead, Essex. He was the father of Robert Bourchier, 1st Baron Bourchier (d.1349), Lord Chancellor of England. The various branches of his descendants held the titles Baron Bourchier, Count of Eu, Viscount Bourchier, Earl of Essex, Baron Berners, Baron FitzWarin and Earl of Bath. The knot should perhaps have been called the "FitzWarin knot" as according to Boutell (1864) the device was first used by the FitzWarin family, whose heir was the Bourchier family.
The historic manor of Tawstock was situated in North Devon, in the hundred of Fremington, 2 miles south of Barnstaple, England. According to Pole the feudal baron of Barnstaple Henry de Tracy made Tawstock his seat, apparently having abandoned Barnstaple Castle as the chief residence of the barony. Many of the historic lords of the manor are commemorated by monuments in St Peter's Church, the parish church of Tawstock which in the opinion of Pevsner contains "the best collection in the county apart from those in the cathedral", and in the opinion of Hoskins "contains the finest collection of monuments in Devon and one of the most notable in England".
Sir Henry Northcote, 4th Baronet (1655–1730) was an English baronet from Devon. He was by profession a doctor of medicine. His great-great-great-grandson was Stafford Northcote, 1st Earl of Iddesleigh (1818–1887).
Robert Incledon (1676–1758) of Pilton House, Pilton, near Barnstaple in North Devon, was a lawyer of New Inn, London, a Clerk of the Peace for Devon, Deputy Recorder of Barnstaple and was twice Mayor of Barnstaple, in 1712 and 1721. In 1713 as mayor he supervised the building of the Mercantile Exchange on Barnstaple Quay, as recorded on the building by a contemporary brass plaque and sculpture of his armorials. He built Pilton House in 1746.
Langley was a historic estate in the parish of Yarnscombe, Devon, situated one mile north-east of the village of Yarnscombe. It was long the seat of a junior branch of the Pollard family of Way in the parish of St Giles in the Wood, Devon, 3 miles to the south.
Thomas Peyton (1418–1484) of Isleham, Cambridgeshire, was twice Sheriff of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire, in 1443 and 1453. He rebuilt the church of St Andrew's in Isleham, in the chancel of which survives his monumental brass. He is depicted in a 1485 stained glass window in Long Melford Church, Suffolk, where he displays on his surcoat the Peyton arms: Sable, a cross engrailed or a mullet in the first quarter argent.
The 2nd Earl of Bedford
| Lord Lieutenant of Devon |
The 4th Earl of Bedford
|Peerage of England|
| Earl of Bath |