"ROCKBEARE, a small straggling village, six miles E.N.E. of Exeter, and 5 miles W. of Ottery St. Mary, has in its parish 513 souls, and 2390 acres of land, including the small village of Marsh-Green, more than 1½ mile S.E. of the church, and many scattered farms, &c. The soil is generally fertile, and the surface boldly undulated. . . . In the reign of Edward III., the manor was given to Canonleigh Abbey, by the Countess of Gloucester. It was long the seat and property of the Sainthill family, of whom it was purchased by Thos. Porter, Esq., of Nutwell House, the present lord of the manor, and owner of a great part of the soil, and of Rockbeare House, which he rebuilt after purchasing the old mansion of Sir. J.L. Duntze, Bart., whose father resided here. The present mansion is a handsome structure, with pleasant grounds, about a mile S.E. of the church. Westcott is the seat and property of the Rev. John Elliott. Mrs. Ann and Mr. Edward Payne, and a few smaller owners have estates in the parish. The Church (St. Mary,) is an antique fabric, with a tower and five bells . . . The Rev. Hy. Nicholls, M.A., is the incumbent,, and has 21A. of glebe, and a good residence, built in 1833. . . . Here is a small Independent chapel, erected in 1840. . . ." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]
A parish in East Budleigh Hundred, the Archdeaconry and the Diocese of Exeter.