Surname Index


The two Widecombe tracts, 1638, giving a contemporary account of the great storm, reprinted with an introduction


J. Brooking Rowe

Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 3:Appx, (1905). [Items 1 designated A1-13, and 2, pp.1-46.]

Prepared by Michael Steer

Brooking's tracts record the Great Thunderstorm of Widecombe on Sunday 21st October 1638, when a lightning bolt and what appears to have been ball lightning hit Widecombe (then Withycombe) parish church during a crowded service, dislodging a pinnacle of the tower and killing four people. Unsurprisingly for the time, the event was taken to be of religious significance and there is considerable editorialising to this effect, but the factual details are nevertheless very clear accounts. There were two contemporary accounts in verse by those who had been present: one by the Reverend George Lyde; the other by the village schoolmaster Richard Hill, whose poem is preserved in part on boards in the church. Brooking's account is produced with two numbering systems. I have designated the first tract's set (A), and presented the second tract's surnames with numbers alone. The book was produced from a digital copy that can be downloaded from https://books.google.co.uk/books. 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.

Arber, Mr44
Bake, Master45
Barry, David27, 29-30
Burton, Richard46
Comyn, James G.42
Crouch, Nathaniel46
Ditford, Mistresse(A7), 7), 21
Dymond, Robert45
Frind, Master (also Frynd)       (A10), 10
Harford, Rtitle page A, title page B, 44-5
Hazlitt, Mr46
Hill, Master(A7), 7, 18, 28
Lyde, Master George(A6), (A1), (A13), 6, 12, 14-5
23, 34, 45 
Meade, Robert26, 28,
Okes, John45
Peeke, Richard40
Reynolds, Sir Richard(A8), 8,
Rothwell, Master44-5
Rouse, Master Raph(A11), 11, 23, 25-6, 35
Taylor, John45
Wallis, Mr Alfred46
Wykes, Tho37, 44, iv, 45