William Langworthy

William Langworthy, son of George Langworthy and Mary Westbrook, was christened 23 November 1735 at South Bent, Devon, England. He died 12 April 1819 at Modbury, Devon and was buried on April 17th, 1819 at Ermington, Devon.

He married Honor (Honora) Warren (daughter of Unknown and Elizabeth Warren - died March 19th 1779) at Ermington, Devon, 27 March 1765. She was born at Ermington in 1746 and died there, 2 December 1789 (see inscription below).

William was a surgeon and there is a memorial stone honouring him - 1738 death, in Erlington parish church (by the pulpit) - (see below) (also of Elizabeth Warrin [illegible] his grandmother who died March 19, 1779.)


Honora - christened at Modbury, Devon, 5th December 1785; married William Lambshead

William Southmead - born at Modbury 22 January 1767; died 26 August 1777, Ermington, Devon

Robert Warring (sic: Warren?) born 1769; married Ann Marshall (8 October 1798, Woolbridge & Newton Abbot, Dist., Devon); children: Honora (b. 1802), Robert (b. 1805)

George Vincent - christened at Modbury, 15 May 1812; married Sally Unknown; children: George (b. 24 Sept 1797), William Frowde (b. 21 June 1798), Omilia (b. 13 September 1801), Elizabeth (b. 10 Sept 1803), Honora (b. 1805), Sarah (b. 1814). George was a surgeon (Langworthy Geo. Vincent & Son, Galpin St - Pigot & Co.'s Directory of Devonshire 1830-31.) (Langworthy George, jun., veterinary surgeon, Galpin St)

Elizabeth - born 1772

Garland - born 1776, Modbury, Devon

Dorothy Southmead - christened 1 May 1778, Modbury; died 1805 (see inscription below)

Aemilia (Emma) - christened 7 July 1783, Modbury; died 8 July 1799 (see inscription below)

William Southmead - born 1788, Modbury; married Mary Unknown (b. abt 1788, Bigbury Court, Devon); 8 children (Langworthy William Southmead, Brownston St. - Pigot & Co.'s Directory of Devonshire 1830-31).

"ERMINGTON . . . is a small village upon a bold eminence on the west side of the river Erme, encompassed by high hills, 10 mile E. of Plymouth, and 2 miles N.W. of Modbury. Its parish contains 1607 souls, and 4952 acres of land, including many scattered farm-houses, &c., and a large portion of the village of Ivybridge, . . . In 1623, a meteoric stone, weighing 23lbs., fell with a great noise from the atmosphere, at Strachleigh in this parish, and buried itself a yard deep in the ground. . . . Lady Elizabeth Bulteel is lady of the manor and hundred of Ermington, which was anciently a demesne of the Crown, and afterwards held by the Peverell, Fitzstephen, Bensted, Stoner, Rouse, and other families. The manor of Ivybridge belongs to Sir F.L. Rogers, Bart., and was held by the De Ponte Hederae, or Ivybridge family, from whom it passed to the Bonvilles and Crokers. E.R.P. Bulteel, Esq., the Rev. S.W. Pearse, W. Pode, Esq., and several smaller owners, have estates in the parish. . . . The Church (St. Peter,) is a large ancient fabric, with a lofty embattled tower, containing five bells, and crowned by a crooked spire, which leans considerably to one side. . . .." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

ERMINGTON parish church: St. Peter and St. Paul. The church consists of chancel, nave, north and south aisles, and west tower surmounted by a tall spire considerably out of the perpendicular, the inclination is said to have been caused by lightning. At one time a remarkable feature in this church was the position of the altar, which stood some six or seven feet away from the chancel wall and was surrounded by a massive Jacobean balustrade of oak. This has been removed and the altar placed in its usual position at the east end of the chancel. In the north chancel aisle is the Elizabethan monument of Christopher Chudleigh of Ashton [1528-1570], there is also a brass of the Strachleigh family, 1853. The chancel screen is a handsome Jacobean erection with a well carved cornice supported by moulded balusters [plate 94]. It is surmounted by a plain cross. There are also north and south parclose screens similar in some respects to those at Ugborough and Holbeton. The screen has been restored by the Misses Penwill, the vicar's daughters, who are also the restorers of Manaton and other Devonshire screens. The clergy stalls face eastwards. The pulpit and font cover are modern, the font is Norman.

WARRING (sic: Warren) Location: Floor memorial stone by pulpit - Ermington Parish Church

Here lyeth the body of Elizabeth the Wife of William B [illegible] Coyton who departed this life the 21th [sic] day of Iulye AO DOM 1635 & Here lyeth ye Body of Mrs Mary Warring who was Buried May ye 6th 1763 Aged 75 years.

LANGWORTHY, WARRIN Location: Floor memorial stone by pulpit.

Underneath rest the remains of William Southmeadd Langworthy son of William I Langworthy surgeon of Modbury and Honor his wife who died the 26th day of August 1777 and also of Elizabeth Warrin [illegible] his grandmother who died March the 19 1779 aged 67. Also of Honor Langworthy wife of the above named who died the 2nd of December 1789 aged [illegible]. Also of Emma Langworthy who died July the 8 1799 aged 16. Also of Dorothy Southmead Langworthy who died [illegible] 1805 [query] Aged 19 who were three of the children of the above named William and Honor Langworthy. Also the body of the said William Langworthy who died April 1 [illegible] 1819 aged 81. Also the [illegible] Mary Langworthy [rest of stone illegible].

1822-23 edition of Pigot's Directory

Langworthy, Geo Vincent: Surgeon Galloping Street
Langworthy, Wm Froude: Surgeon Galloping Street
Langworthy, Wm Southmead: Surgeon


MODBURY, in the hundred of Ermington and in the deanery of Plympton, is a market-town, fourteen and a half miles from Plymouth, twenty-five from Exeter, and two hundred and eight from London.Modbury sent members to parliament in the reign of Edward I. I find no record of the grant of the market. It is held on Thursday for corn, butchers' meat, and other provisions. There were formerly two fairs, at the festival of St. George and St. James. The former only is now kept up, and held on the fourth of May, if it fall on a Tuesday or Wednesday; otherwise, on the Tuesday following. It is a great fair for cattle, clothes, and other merchandize. There is a great market for cattle on the second Tuesday in every month. The principal villages in this parish are Brownston, Leigh, Caton, Penquit, and part of Ludbrook.

The number of inhabitants in the town and parish of Modbury was, in 1801, 1813; in 1811, 1890; according to the returns made to Parliament at those periods.

In the month of December, 1642, Modbury Castle, then held by its owner, Mr. Champernowne, was taken by a party of the parliamentary garrison at Plymouth; and he himself, with Sir Edmund Fortescue, the sheriff, Captain Peter Fortescue, Sir Edmund Seymour, his son, then knight of the shire, Mr. Pomeroy, and others, were taken prisoners. (fn. 35) In the month of February following, Sir Nicholas Slanning, who had entrenched himself at Modbury, with two thousand men, was defeated by the Devonshire clubmen. (fn. 36)

The manor of Modbury belonged to the Valletorts, barons of Harberton. Roger Valletort conveyed it to Sir Alexander de Okeston, who had married Joan, widow of Ralph de Valletort, supposed to have been a concubine of Richard, Earl of Cornwall, and King of the Romans. They had issue, Sir John de Okeston, who died without issue, having, by the command of King Edward II., conveyed Modbury, and other lands, formerly given to his father by Roger de Valletort, to Sir Richard Champernowne. This Sir Richard was son of Richard Champernowne, by Joan, daughter of the above-mentioned Joan, whom Edmund Earl of Cornwall, in a deed, bearing date 12 Edward I., calls sister. Richard Champernowne, the father, was a younger son of Sir Henry Champernowne, of Clist Champernowne. The manor of Modbury continued in the Champernownes for many generations. Sir Arthur Champernowne, who died at Modbury in the reign of James I., was an eminent commander in Ireland, under the Earl of Essex, by whom he was knighted in 1599. In the year 1700, Arthur Champernowne, Esq., the last of this branch, sold the manor and borough to Nicholas Trist, Esq., of Bowden. In 1803, this estate was purchased of one of the co-heiresses of Trist, by Henry Legassicke, Esq., the present proprietor. Richard Champernowne had a licence for castellating his mansion at Modbury in 1334. (fn. 37) The remains of the castle were purchased of Arthur Champernowne, Esq., of Mr. Henry Legassicke, who, at the earnest request of Mrs. Sarah Champernowne, in 1698, conveyed its site to her; but it appears that, in 1705, she sold what remained of the old castle for the materials. A small part of the mansion, however, yet remains, said to have been a dining-room, now converted into a stable and hay-loft. (fn. 38)

In the reign of King Stephen, a priory was founded at Modbury, by an ancestor of the Champernownes, as a cell to the abbey of St. Peter sur Dive, in Normandy. This priory, with its lands, having been seised by the crown, as belonging to an alien monastery, was first granted, by King Henry VI., to Tavistock abbey; but afterwards was made part of the endowment of Eton College, to which the manor, of Priory still belongs, together with the manor of Penquit and Upton. Modbury priory was held some time under Eton College, by the Champernownes; and it was, in 1630, the seat of a younger brother of that family. The lease has been for several years vested in the family of Rhodes.

The manor of Orchardton, or Orcherton, at the time of the Domesday survey, was held under Earl Moreton by Regináld de Valletort: it belonged, in the reign of King John, to Jordan de la Warr; in the succeeding reign it was the property and seat of a younger branch of the Prideaux family. After continuing at Orcherton for thirteen descents, the last of this branch sold it to Sir John Hele, sergeant-at-law. Having since passed with the Fleet estate, it is now the property of John Bulteel, Esq. The old mansion is occupied as a farm-house.

The manor of Shilveston, or Shilston, was held in demesne at the time of the Domesday survey by Osbern de Salceid. In the reign of Henry III. it was in a family who took their name from this, the place of their residence. From them it passed, by marriage, to Ashleigh. In the fourteenth century it belonged to the family of Goneton, from whom it passed, either by purchase or alliance, to Robert Hill, made one of the justices of the Common Pleas in 1408. Judge Hill's posterity continued here for eight generations, after which the manor of Shilston was purchased by Christopher Savery, Esq., ancestor of Christopher Savery, Esq., of South Efford, the present proprietor, who possesses also the manor of Spriddlescombe in this parish. Shilston House was rebuilt about the year 1813; Spriddlescombe is now a farm-house.

The manor of Wimpston, or Wymston, was granted by King John to John Fortescue in 1209, and appears to have been the first residence of that ancient and noble family in the county. It was alienated, not long before the year 1600, and in 1620 was in the family of Trobridge. It was afterwards successively in the families of Champernowne and Ourry. Paul Treby Treby, Esq., (some time Ourry,) sold it to W. L. Prettyjohn, Esq., who has built a new house on the estate, and is the present proprietor.

The manor of Leigh Durant, in this parish, belonged, in the reign of Henry III., to the family of De Leigh. After five descents, the heiress of this family married Revell. The co-heiresses of Revell married Hurst, Hill, and Fountayne. Two parts of this estate became vested in Hurst, and passed to Martyn; the other third passed from Hill to Rouse. The manor of Leigh Durant now belongs to Mrs. Ann Fortye.

The manor of South Ludbrook, belonging to the Rev. N. A. Bartlett, is partly in this parish, and partly in Ermington: the manor of North Ludbrook is partly in this parish and partly in that of Ugborough.

The manor of Brownston, or Bromston, belonged formerly to the Valletorts, and was given by Reginald de Valletort to Ralph de Morville, whose son Adam conveyed it to the abbot and convent of Buckfastleigh. After the dissolution of that monastery, it was granted to Sir Thomas Dennis of Holcombe, whose grandson dismembered it, and sold the royalties to the several tenants. The manor of Boyshele belonged to the ancient family of De Bosco or Boys, whose heiress brought it to Speccot. Sir John Speccot was possessed of it in the reign of Charles I. No estate in Modbury is now known by this name. I suspect it to be the same which, by the name of the manor of Modbury, passed by successive female heirs from Speccot to Hals and Trelawney, and, under the same title as Stapeldon (fn. 39) , is now vested in the daughters of the late Honourable Rose Herring May, of the island of Jamaica.

The manor of Edmerston belonged, at an early period, to a family to whom it gave name: after five descents the heiress of Edmerston married Rous, whose descendants continued to possess Edmerston, and to reside there, for many generations. William Rous, Esq., was the possessor when Sir William Pole made his collections, about 1630. It seems not long afterwards to have passed to the family of Noseworthy: in 1684 Edward Noseworthy, Esq., mortgaged it to Sir John Maynard, sergeant-at-law, by whom it was probably foreclosed. In 1703, Henry Earl of Suffolk, who married the sergeant's widow, joined with that lady in selling it to Mr. John Ford, of Kingsbridge; of whom it was purchased by Mr. Robert Froude, great-grandfather of the Rev. Robert Hurrel Froude, archdeacon of Totnes, who is the present proprietor. Mr. Froude possesses also the adjoining manor of Gutsford, which has passed by the same title.

Little Modbury was, in the reign of Henry III., the seat of Sir Ralph Rous. After five descents, the heiress of this branch brought Little Modbury to Dymock. By virtue of an entail, it passed to Bonville, and became vested in the crown by the attainder of the Duke of Suffolk. It was purchased of the crown by Challons, and passed, by sale, to Hele. There is no estate of any consequence now at Little Modbury, which is divided into small farms.

The barton of Old Port is said to have taken its name from an old fort which stood on the river Erme. In the reign of Henry III. it belonged to the family of De la Port, one of the co-heiresses of which, after a few descents, brought it to Heanton, and the heiress of Heanton to Somaster. The last-mentioned family continued to possess it for several descents. Sir Samuel Somaster sold it, in or about the reign of James I., to Sir Warwick Hele. Old Port is now a farm belonging to Lord Ashburton.

The barton of Yarnacombe belonged to the Harts for many generations. Samuel Hart, Esq., the last of that family, sold it to William Mackworth Praed, Esq., the present proprietor, who possesses also the barton of West Leigh. Risdon says that East and West Leigh formerly belonged to the family of Challons, and that their estate was called Leigh Challons. He tells us that Hardwinus, son of the Earl of Challons, married the heiress of De la Leigh; that there were divers knights of the Challons family, and that Henry Challons, one of their descendants, made a voyage for the discovery of Virginia, and New England, in which he was taken by the Spaniards and inhumanly treated. The heiress of Challons married into the St. Aubyn family. The greater part of East and West Leigh is now divided into small farms.

Trewin, now called Trayne, or Traine, gave name to a family who possessed it for several descents. John Terry possessed it in the reign of Henry IV. After this the family of Scoos, who owned Colemore also in this parish, possessed and resided at Trayne for several generations. About the middle of the sixteenth century the heiress of Scoos brought it to the Swetes. Adrian Swete, Esq., the last of this family, died in 1755, having bequeathed all his estates to his mother, Mrs. Esther Swete, who died in 1771, having devised them to her relation the Rev. John Tripe of Ashburton, (now of Oxton,) who took the name of Swete, and is the present proprietor.

In the parish-church are monuments of Mr. Oliver Hill, 1573 (fn. 40) ; John, son of John Swete, Esq., of Traine, 1690; and Garnet Loving, captain of the 13th regiment of foot, 1801. There are also some ancient mutilated monuments, which probably were for the Champernowne family.

Two-thirds of the great tithes are appropriated to Eton College; and the vicarage is endowed with one-third, with the exception that the College have the whole of the great tithes of Penquit, and the vicar the whole of those of West Leigh. The vicarage is in the gift of the college.

The Independent Calvinists, Baptists, Quakers, and Wesleyan Methodists, have meeting-houses at Modbury.

Dr. William Battie, an eminent physician and medical writer of the last century, was son of Edward Battie, vicar of Modbury, and was born at this place in 1704.

A charity-school was founded at Modbury in the year 1731, by a contribution of the principal inhabitants: a fund of 260l. was then raised, from the interest of which 12l. per annum is given by the treasurer Christopher Savery, Esq., to a schoolmaster for teaching 12 boys reading, writing, and arithmetic.

LODDISWELL, or LODDESWILL, in the hundred of Stanborough and in the deanery of Woodleigh, lies about three miles from Kingsbridge. The village, of Staunton is in this parish.

The manor of Loddiswell was, at the taking of the Domesday survey, part of the demesne of Joel de Totneis: King Henry II. granted it to William Bruis. Eva, the great grand-daughter of this William, was mother of Milicent de Montalt, under whom this manor was held by the Knovill family in the reign of Edward I. After this I find nothing of it, except that Sir John Elyot possessed it in 1620 (fn. 39) , and that it is now in moieties, one of which belongs to George Furlong Wise, Esq., and the other to Mr. Thomas Harris, by purchase from Morshead. The lord of this manor had formerly the power of inflicting capital punishment. (fn. 40)

The manor of Webbiton belongs to Sir Henry Carew, Bart.; that of Staunton to Sir Henry Carew and G. F. Wise, Esq., whose seat is at Woolston in this parish.

The barton of Hach Arundell belonged anciently to the Arundells of Somersetshire, and afterwards, in the reign of Edward I., to that of Hach. In the reign of Henry IV. it belonged to the family of Carswell, who resided at Hach for many generations. The heiress of Carswell brought it to Langworthy. It is now the property of Walter Prideaux, Esq.

About the year 1463 Thomas Gyll, junior, had the royal license for castellating his mansion at Hach Arundell and enclosing a park. (fn. 41)

In the parish-church are memorials of the families of Langworthy, &c. (fn. 42 - see below) Francis Freke Gunston, Esq., is impropriator of the great tithes, and patron of the vicarage.

Richard Phillips, in 1728, gave the profits of a messuage and tenement to be distributed yearly on his tomb to the poor not receiving parish relief.

Katherine, daughter of William Langworthy, and wife of Jonas Pinsent, 1635; the mother of William Langworthy was heiress of Carswell; Catherine, daughter of Richard Langworthy, wife of Richard Wood of Comb, by Anne, co-heiress of Fursland, 1659; Anne Fursland, daughter of William Langworthy, the same year; Mrs. Elizabeth Rennell, 1648; Caroline Grace, wife of the Rev. George Wise, 1811.