TREFFRIDOWE, John, of Treffridowe, Cornw.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1386-1421, ed. J.S. Roskell, L. Clark, C. Rawcliffe., 1993
Available from Boydell and Brewer



May 1421

Family and Education

s. and h. of Robert Treffridowe by his w. Joan. m. Margaret.

Offices Held

Jt. havener of Falmouth, Kerrier and Mount’s Bay, Cornw. 30 Aug. 1422-Mich. 1425.1


Treffridowe’s father spent some time in royal service in Cornwall, first as alnager, in 1399, and later as a coroner, from 1411. Although he lived at Treffridowe, he was sometimes described as ‘of Yapstowe’, and his landed holdings were the subject of several lawsuits at the assizes at Launceston.2 John usually appeared with him as a co-defendant. In 1407, father and son, together with Thomas Treffridowe* (probably John’s younger brother), were required to provide securities, each in a bond for 40 marks, that they would keep the peace; eight years later they were charged with evicting John and Stephany Profet from land at ‘Overatrencruk’ (perhaps Higher Trencreek in Menheniot), and in 1417 they were said to have disseised Richard Clay of property in ‘Overalangedon’ (which Robert Treffridowe had purchased in 1398). John came into his rather depleted inheritance some time between 1423 and 1425, only for part of it to be then claimed by Thomas Eston* of Exeter. He later held lands both in west Cornwall at Perranuthnoe, near Helston, and in the east of the county at Marhamchurch and Whalesborough.3

Treffridowe, who appeared briefly as an attorney at the assizes held in 1407, may well have been a lawyer by profession. Whether or not this was the case, he became involved in the administration of the duchy of Cornwall before Michaelmas 1410, when he acted on behalf of the abbot of Newenham in rendering account at the duchy exchequer for the bailiwick of the hundred of Stratton; and later on, at the shire elections to the Parliament of 1422, he stood surety for John Arundell II*, eldest son of the steward of the duchy. He probably owed his appointment as joint havener of the western ports of Cornwall to Thomas Chaucer*, the chief butler of England, who at that time held the havenership of all the duchy ports on an Exchequer lease. Treffridowe attended the shire elections for Cornwall held at Launceston in 1432 and at Lostwithiel in 1436. By the latter date some discrepancies in his accounts as havenet had been discovered, and after an inquiry conducted at Lostwithiel in 1437 his property was distrained. He died shortly afterwards, and it was as his executrix that in 1441 his widow, Margaret, accounted at the Exchequer for certain sums of money owing from the time of his havenership over 16 years before.4

Ref Volumes: 1386-1421

Author: L. S. Woodger


  • 1. E364/76 m. N.
  • 2. Cornw. Feet of Fines (Devon and Cornw. Rec. Soc. 1950), 753; C242/8/21.
  • 3. JUST 1/1519 m. 89d, 1529 m. 12, 1531 m. 29, 1540 m. 76d; Cornw. Feet of Fines, 815; Feudal Aids, i. 221, 236, 237, 239.
  • 4. JUST 1/1519 m. 115; C219/13/1, 14/3, 15/1; SC6/1291/2/3, 4; E364/76 m. N; Duchy of Cornw. RO, ministers’ acct. 40.