Cornish ~ First Generation

1.   Note on Poughill, Cornwall:
"One mile north of Bude is the hamlet of Poughill, which is mentioned in the Domesday Book as 'Pochelle'. " (ref Kirsty Gray, 'Tracing Your West Country Ancestors)

John CORNISH of Poughill, Cornwall, England.
Born c1590.
Married c1610 to Priscilla, surname unknown. The marriage record is not found in Cornish records. She was born c1590.

Vicar of Poughill. In the Clergy Database of the Church of England, there is an entry for Johannes Cornish, date 22/5/1623. Perpetual Vicar of Powghill (ref See photo page for a photo of the parish church and of the list of Vicars.

In 1641 [1641/42], John, together with sons Alexander and Phillip, signed a document known as the Protestation.
"During the spring of 1641 there was great unrest in Parliament with discord between the House of Commons and the Lords, and plots and sub-plots against both the King and Parliament itself. In May 1641 Parliament agreed upon the following Protestation Oath.
'I do, in the presence of Almighty God, promise, vow and protest to maintain and defend, as far as lawfully I may, with my Life, Power and Estate, the true reformed Protestant Religion, expressed in the Doctrines of the Church of England, against all Popery and Popish Innovations, within the Realm, contrary to the same Doctrines, and according to the Duty of my Allegiance, His Majesties Royal Person, Honour and Estate, as also the Power and Privileges of Parliaments, the Lawful Rights and Liberties of the Subjects, and every person that maketh this Protestation, in whatsoever he shall do in the lawful Pursuance of the same; and to my power, and as far as lawfully I may, I will oppose and by all good ways and means endeavour to bring to condign punishment all such as shall, either by Force, Practice, Cousels, Plots, Conspiracies, or otherwise, do any Thing to the contrary of any Thing in this present Protestation contained; and further, that I shall in all just and honourable ways, endeavour to preserve the Union and Peace betwixt the three Kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland; and neither for Hope, Fear nor any other Respect shall relinquish this Promise, Vow and Protestation.'
On the 6th May 1641 a Bill was introduced into the House of Commons imposing the signing of the Protestation on all Englishmen of 18 years and above. All who refused to sign were deemed unfit to hold office in Church or Commonwealth. At the end of February or the beginning of March 1641 [i.e. 1641/42] priests read out the Protestation in the parish churches. The parishioners then signed or made their mark before him, and the other officials, who testified that the oath had been taken, or refused."

There follows a list of names of signatories. These include many names that subsequently appear in the family, such as Pudner, Uglow, Grenaway, and Barnard and Timothy Davye (signatories of the will). The three Cornish names are "John Cornish, Vicar", Phillip Cornish and Alexander Cornish. (ref Cornwall Online Parish Clerks website,

Priscilla was buried 14 Mar 1650/51 at Poughill (ref parish record on Family Search Record Collection for Poughill, page 100).
John was buried 28 March 1652 at Poughill (ref parish record on Family Search Record Collection for Poughill, page 101).

The Will was dated (before death) 30 April 1651 and proved (after death) 15 June 1653 in London by John Cornish, the Executor named in the Will. The Will transcript states in part (see attached, transcription provided by B.Chapple & L.Shade subject to correction):

"Will of John Cornish, Vicar of Parish of Poughill.
In the name of God Amen. I John Cornish vicar of the parish of Poughill in the County of Cornwall the thirtieth day of the month of April in the year of our lord God one thousand six hundred fifty and one being whole of mynd and praise be rendered to God, do make and ordayne this my last will and testament in manner and forme following.In duty bind (..?..) I give my soule into the hand of my maker and redeemer and my body to be interred in Christian burial.

Item I give and bequeath unto my sonne Alexander Cornish thirty shillings, my trendall (*) and drinking barrell which he hath in his house and the great Chest which is in his lower room where he dwelleth and this to be payd and distributed within three monthes of my buriall.
Item I give and bequeath unto my sonne Walter Cornish thirty shillings to be paid within three months of my buriall.
Item I give and bequeath unto my sonne William Cornish thirty shillings to be paid within three months of my buriall.
Item I give and bequeath unto my sonne Phillip Cornish thirty shillings and my greatest brewing pan and this to be paid and delivered within three months of my buriall.
My will and pleasure is that one great cupboard and presse which is at Poughill town where Alexander Cornish now dwelleth shall remain thereto unto the longest liver of the aforesaid Alexander, Walter, William and Phillip.
All the rest of my goods not formerly bequeathed or delivered I give and bequeath unto my Grandchild John Cornish, the sonne of Phillip Cornish.

In witness whereof I have fixed my hand and (..?..) the day and year about written. In the presence of those whose names are published.

John Cornish vicar. Timothie Davie. Barnard Davye. Robert Davye "

* Possibly in the sense of a trendal or trendle which was the name for the ring, circle or hoop wherein candles were fixed.

Note that Poughill baptism records for the name Cornish start in 1633.

There are some extra records for Poughill that have not been connected to this tree.

Photo Page

The Protestation 1641

Will of John Cornish
(pdf, 610kb)

Extra Poughill connections
  1. Alexander CORNISH born c1610  
  2. Walter CORNISH born c1615  
  3. William CORNISH born c1617  
  4. Phillip CORNISH born c1620  

Updated 18 Jan 2018