Richard Burthogge

Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), p. 16.


J. Hambley Rowe

Prepared by Michael Steer

Richard Burthogge was the son of a Captain of Foot at the garrison of Plymouth, and was baptised in Plympton St Maurice on 30 January 1637 (OS; 1638 by the Gregorian calendar). He attended Exeter Grammar School, was admitted to All Souls College, Oxford, as a servitor in 1654, migrated to Lincoln College, Oxford, and graduated B.A. "completed by determination" in 1658. He matriculated at the University of Leiden in October 1661. Back in England, Burthogge practiced medicine in and near Totnes. He spent many years at Bowden House, Ashprington, near Totnes. It belonged to his sister’s husband Edward Giles. Unprejudiced even against Catholics and probably himself a Non-Conformist, he was made a Justice of the Peace under King James II, a position he retained under King William III. Burthogge married at least three times. His first wife was Sarah Trevill, daughter of Andrew Trevill. In the following years, when married to Mary Deeble. Burthogge published several works on religious subjects and two further philosophical works, both dedicated to John Locke. Mary Deeble probably died in 1695. His daughters Sarah, Mary and Ann originated from these first two marriages. Ann Burthogge, who predeceased her father, left a young son, Richard Babbage, ancestor of the computer pioneer Charles Babbage. At the time of his death Burthogge was married to Honour and seems to have lived at Bowden. He died in 1705 and was buried at St. Mary’s church, Totnes, on 24 July 1705. 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.

9. RICHARD BURTHOGGE. — There is some account of Richard Burthogge, m.d., of Bowden, near Totnes, in the Dict. Nat. Biog. (vol. vii, p. 453), but it is not nearly full enough. Where did this Devon-resident philosopher hail from ? He married Sara, daughter of Andrew Trevill, a Puritan Justice of Fowey (Sheriff of Cornwall 1651), and the ceremony took place at St. Winnow 30th Jan., 1665. The only other members of the Burthogge family that I have met with is a William (Matthews' Hist, of St. Ives), who was Portreeve of St. Ives in 1612 and 162 1 and a chief burgess as early as 1603. Martin Burthogg, of Totnes, spinster, was married to Philip Mayow, of Morval, and the marriage licence is dated for 1700 (see Visitation of Cornwall, Harl. Soc, p. 140.) Martin is a most unusual female name. More information on the ancestry of Richard Burthogge is much desired. 

                       J. Hambley Rowe, M.B.