Richard Farrant, the Puritan "Rector" of Musbury.

Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VII, (1912-1913), Exeter: James G. Commin. 1913, pp. 23-24.


A.J.P. Skinner

Prepared by Michael Steer

The Great Ejection followed the Act of Uniformity 1662 in England. Several thousand Puritan ministers were forced out of their positions by Church of England clergy, following the changes after the restoration to power of Charles II. It was a consequence (not necessarily intended) of the Savoy Conference of 1661. The Act of Uniformity prescribed that any minister who refused to conform to the Book of Common Prayer by St. Bartholomew's Day (24 August) 1662 should be ejected from the Church of England. This date became known as Black Bartholomew's Day among dissenters. Although there had already been ministers outside the established church, the Great Ejection created an abiding concept of non-conformity. The article, from a copy of a rare and much sought-after journal can be downloaded from the Internet Archive. Google has sponsored the digitisation of books from several libraries. These books, on which copyright has expired, are available for free educational and research use, both as individual books and as full collections to aid researchers.

Note 6. RICHARD FARRANT, THE PURITAN " RECTOR " OF MUSBURY. - The Book of the Axe, p. 749, in the list of Rectors of Musbury, gives : -

1653.    Richard Griffen expelled Richard Farrant. 1662.    November 27. Richard Cesson admitted on the death of Richard Farrant.

Calamy's Nonconformists' Memorial, in the account of Richard Farrant, says: - " Being once taken up for preaching after his ejectment."

The following entries from Musbury Parish Church Registers show that "on the death" is an error, as Richard Cresson died before Richard Farrant: -

1671.    Mr. Richard Crisson, Rector of this pish of Musbury, died 18 Dec and was buried 26 same month.
1680.    Mr. Richard Farrand, quondam Rector of Musbury, was buried in the church of the same May 21.
1660.    John, s. Richard Farrand, Clerke, borne in Musbury 14 May and bapt. there 24 of the same.
1661.    Sarah, da. Richard Farrand, clerke, borne in Musb. Aug. 11 and bapt. there Aug. 18.
1663.    Allice, d. Richard Farrand, borne in Musbury Tuesday, Sept. 29 and bapt. by Mr. Richard Cresson Oct. 6.
1665.    Susanna, da. Mr. Richard Farrand, bap. 22 Nov.
1668.    Robert, s. Richard Farrand, borne 20 Jan., bapt. 23 Feb. Margaret Baker, Allice Farrand and Mary Webber present.
1669.    Mare, da. Mr. Richard Farrand and Sarah his w., bapt. 6 Feb.
1673.    Sarah, wife Mr. Richard Farrand, buried in Musbury church ffeb. 25.
1675.    Mary, da. Mr. Richard Farrand, buried Nov. 15.
1684.    Susanna, d. Mr. Richard ffarrand, deceased, former rector of Musbury, was buried in the church of the same April 4.
1690.    Mr. Robert ffarrant buried 3 Dec.
1653.    Richard Griffen expelled.

There is no mention of him in Walker's Sufferings of the Clergy. He was probably presented to the rectory by the Drake patron on the death of Matthew Drake -

1653.    Mr. Matthu Drake, rector of Musbury, buried 8 Sept. who had succeeded John Jordan.
1630.    John Jordan, Rector, buried 7 May.