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The Ancestry of Oliver Mainwaring:
Aysshe – Ashe – Esshe – Esse

1 John Aysshe = ________
2 William Ayshe = ________
3 John Ashe = Thomasine Maynard
4 Nicholas Ashe = Joanna Pollard
5 Richard Esshe = Prudence Rudgeley
6 Henry Esse = Loveday Moyle
7 Prudence Esse = Oliver Mainwaring (II)
8 Oliver Mainwaring (III) = Hannah Raymond

A pedigree in the 1623 Visitation of Somerset purports to trace four previous generations of this line.[1] The more recent generations of the Esse line appear in the 1564 Visitation of Devon, ed. Colby (1881), pp. 170-1, and in Vivian’s Visitations of Cornwall (1887), 372, and Visitations of the county of Devon (1895), 1:25-26. It is also treated briefly in Joseph Foster, A revised genealogical account of the various families descended from Francis Fox, of St. Germans, Cornwall (London, 1872), 25, and is apparently treated in Vivian’s Devonshire Families, to which we have not had access.

1.  John Aysshe or Aysshe, of Sowton, Devon. He married ________.

2.  William Asshe or Ayshe, of Sowton, died 30 September 1495 seised of the manor of “Clyst Formeson,” worth £20, held of Richard Pomeray, Knt., by rent of 2s. yearly.[2] He married ________.

3.  John Ashe (or Ayshe), of Sowton, born about 1468-69 (he was aged “aged 26 and more” at the death of his father in 1495). He is said to have married Thomasine Maynard.[3]

4.  Nicholas Ashe (or Esshe), of Sowton, died 4 April 1552.[4] A “Nicholas Asshe,” with no relationship mentioned, witnessed the will, proved 24 October 1550, of Richard Pollard, of Horwood, who according to the account of the Pollards in the 1564 visitation of Devon was brother to Nicholas’s wife.[5] He and his wife, through their son James, were ancestors of H.M. Elizabeth, the late Queen Mother.[6] He married Joanna Pollard, named in the 1552 inquisition post mortem of her husband, whom she survived, dying (according to Paget) on 16 June 1587. She was a daughter of Anthony Pollard,[7] of Waye and Horwood, by the latter’s wife Petronelle Chudleigh, apparently a daughter of Sir James Chudleigh.[8]

5.  Richard Esshe (or Ashe), of Sowton, born ca. 1531 (aged 24 years at the proving of his father’s will in 1555), buried 12 September 1591 at Sowton. He married Prudence Rudgeley, buried 25 August 1591 at Clyst Formison (alias Sowton), Devon, daughter of John Rudgeley [or Rugeley?], of London, by an unknown wife.[9]

6.  Henry Esshe (or Eshe or Esse or Aishe), Gent., of Sowton in 1620, buried 8 June 1640 at Sowton.[10] He supplied the pedigree for his family in the 1620 Visitation, which has the surname spelled “Esshe” in the body of the document, but is signed “Henrie Aysshe.”[11] His heir was his son Richard, aged 21 in 1620. He married (1) before 1599, Loveday Moyle, buried 27 January 1628/9 at Sowton, daughter of Richard Moyle, of Trevissick, in the parish of St. Austell, Cornwall, by Mary, daughter of Lawrence Kendall, lord of the manor of Withiel, near Bodmin, Cornwall.[12] She is named posthumously as “my sister Lowdye Ash” in the will of her brother, Richard Moyle, of St. Austell, Cornwall, dated 1 November 1653 and proved 1 July 1654.[13] He married (2) 12 May 1629 at at Sowton, Elizabeth (_____) Campbell, widow of [Mr.] Robert Campbell (d. 1621), Rector of Sowton, Devon.[14]

7.  Prudence Esse (or Aishe), baptized 23 December 1599 at Sowton, died shortly before 1 October 1643, when she was buried at Dawlish, Devon. She married 1618 (an entry in the LDS Ancestral file says 21 June) at Heavitree, near Exeter, Oliver Mainwaring (II), Gent., of Exeter and Dawlish, Devon, was born about 1587, and died 14 March 1672, and was buried at Dawlish, son of Oliver Mainwaring (I) by Margaret, daughter and co-heiress of William Torbock, Esq., of Torbock Hall, co. Lancaster. See MAINWARING for the continuation of the line.


11623 Visitation of Somerset, ed. Colby (Harleian Society, vol. 11, 1876), p. 4.
2Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, Henry VII, vol. 1, no. 1203.
3The Maynard pedigrees in the 1564 and 1620 Visitations of Devon are too recent to be of any help in identifying her.
4AR7, line 217, noting his inquisition post mortem and will, dated 3 April 1552, proved 8 June 1555 at Exeter. The 1564 Visitation of Devon, ed. Colby (1881), p. 171, mentions him under the account of his wife’s family, but does find a place for him in the Esse pedigree. The account of his ancestry in the 1623 Visitation of Somerset, ed. Colby (Harleian Society, vol. 11, 1876), p. 4, gives at least the name of his father and grandfather correctly.
5P.C.C. Coode, modern archival reference PRO prob. 11/33. While there were other men named Richard Pollard in this period, the testator names his wife as Johan, which is compatible with the statement in the visitation that she was Jean Bamfield.
6Gerald Paget, The Lineage and Ancestry of H.R.H. Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, 2 vols. (Edinburgh & London: Charles Skilton, 1977), 2:182, 125, etc.
7Note that contemporary sources do not call him a knight, as has sometimes been claimed; and he is not mentioned in Shaw’s The Knights of England.
8A possible Carolingian descent for Petronelle Chudleigh was hinted at some time ago by Gary Boyd Roberts in “The Mowbray Connection,” pt. 2, The Connecticut Nutmegger 10(2) (September 1977): 187-198, at p. 194, and written out in detail in Pedigrees of some of the Emperor Charlemagne’s Descendants 2:191, 71-3. Chronological difficulties with the line were pointed out in AR7, line 217 (a line dropped in AR8), which tried to improve the chronology with the insertion of two generations, but the line even in this revised form was rejected by Farmerie in “Disproof of a novel descent of Oliver1 Mainwaring of New London, Connecticut, from King Edward III of England: Henry Holland, Duke of Exeter, and Robert Holland, “Bastard of Exeter’,” TAG 76:46-49. A number of ancestral lines of the Pollards are treated, not always satisfactorily, in John Y. Rowe, “Descendants of Thorvaldr or Turold on the Bayeux Tapestry of special Canadian interest,” Families (Ontario Genealogical Society), 18 (1979): 50-60, at pp. 50-54.
9To a later era belongs the pedigree of Rugeley of London, descended from Simon Rugeley, of Hawksyard, in the parish of Armitage, near Rugeley, co. Stafford, in The Visitation of London, anno domini 1633, 1634, and 1635, made by Sr. Henry St. George, Kt., Richmond Herald, ed. Joseph Jackson Howard, 2 vols. (London, 1883), 2:216. We have not found any pertinent wills in the P.C.C.
10AR7, p. 182.
111620 Visitation of Devonshire (Harleian Society, vol. 6), p. 14.
12Vivian’s Visitations of Cornwall (1887), p. 336; AR7:182; Todd A. Farmerie, in TAG 76 (2001): 46-49.
13P.C.C. 144 Alchin, modern archival reference PRO prob. 11/235.
14We had overlooked this connection, which is shown on Hal Bradley’s website, at Vivian, Visitations of the county of Devon, 1:25; George Oliver, Ecclesiastical antiquities in Devon; being observations on several churches in Devonshire…, 3 vols. (Exeter, 1840-42), 2:45, which states: “Robert Campbell was admitted 21 August, 1617…. This Rector was buried 25 September, 1621. His widow Elizabeth received letters of administration to his effects, 3 October 1621. On 12 May, 1629, she married Henry Ashe, Esq.”

The content of this page first appeared as part of an ancestor table, under the now-defunct URL http://johnblythedobson.org/genealogy/AT/view_AT.cfm?ID=29, on 21 August 2002
This page was last revised 19 December 2009