TRELAWNY, Samuel (1630-66), of Ham, nr. Plymouth, Devon and Hengar House, St. Tudy, Cornw.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer



5 May - 12 June 1660
9 June 1660
1661 - Apr. 1666

Family and Education

bap. 31 Mar. 1630, 2nd but 1st surv. s. of Robert Trelawny, merchant, of Ham; bro. of John Trelawny. educ. Exeter, Oxf. 1647; G. Inn 1647, called 1661. m. 5 Feb. 1651, Elizabeth, da. and h. of John Billing of Hengar, s.p. suc. fa. 1644.1

Offices Held

Commr. for assessment, Devon Aug. 1660-d., Cornw. 1661-d.; j.p. Devon and Cornw. 1661-d.


Trelawny was descended from one of the cadet branches of the Trelawne family which established themselves in Tudor Plymouth. His grandfather served three terms as mayor, and his father, ‘a merchant of great reputation’, represented the borough in the Short and Long Parliaments until disabled for expressing royalist opinions. He was imprisoned in the autumn of 1642 for supplying the King’s garrisons and died in captivity two years later. His losses were computed at £10,000 besides the burning of his new house at Ham.2

Trelawny, a lawyer, doubtless inherited his father’s royalist sympathies, and held no office during the Interregnum, though he sat in Richard Cromwell’s Parliament. He might thus be considered within the qualifications imposed by the Long Parliament for the general election of 1660, when he was involved in double returns at Camelford, eight miles from Hengar, and Plymouth. He was seated for the Cornish borough on the merits of the return, and marked as a friend on Lord Wharton’s list. But he doubtless supported the Court, though he was not active in the Convention. At most, he was named to 11 committees and made three recorded speeches, though even here there is the possibility of confusion with Jonathan Trelawny I. Before the return of the King he possibly served on committees for the continuation of judicial proceedings and the discovery of public debts. On 9 June the Plymouth election was resolved in favour of Trelawny and William Morice I, but three days later the Camelford election was declared void. He may have been named to the committee of inquiry into unauthorized Anglican publications on 30 June, and spoken in favour of disabling major-generals and decimators only. After the recess ‘Mr Trelawny’ was added to the committee for the militia bill and appointed to that for the encouragement of fishing.3

Trelawny was re-elected for Plymouth in 1661, and was probably moderately active in the Cavalier Parliament. In the first five sessions he was definitely appointed to nine committees, and perhaps to fifty more, including those for the corporations and uniformity bills and the bill of pains and penalties. He was given leave to introduce a bill on behalf of some of his constituents in the first session, but this has not been traced. On 28 Jan. 1662 he acted as teller against continuing the day-long debate on the conveyances extorted from Lady Powell by William Hinson and his uncle. The King recommended him as town clerk of Plymouth ‘as soon as occasion offers’, but it seems that it never did, nor is it clear that his petitions for the lease of Plympton St. Mary rectory or the repayment of £2,000 plate and goods taken from his ship at Falmouth for the King’s service ever bore fruit. On the other hand he ‘insisted and stood upon his privilege of Parliament, and dared and threatened any person to trouble and molest him’, notably his father-in-law, whose estates he had taken over. He probably acted as teller against the additional corporations bill on 4 July 1663, but was appointed to the committee for its successor in the following year. He was listed as a court dependant, and appointed one of the managers of a conference on Falmouth church on 13 May 1664. He died at Hengar and was buried at St. Tudy on 26 Apr. 1666.4

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Authors: M. W. Helms / Paula Watson


  • 1. Plymouth St. Andrew Reg. (Devon and Cornw. Rec. Soc.), 555; Vivian, Vis. Cornw. 481; J. Maclean, Trigg Minor, i. 389.
  • 2. Keeler, Long Parl. 363-4; Clarendon, Hist. Rebellion, i. 587; CSP Dom. 1660-1, p. 303.
  • 3. CJ, viii. 3, 12, 59; Bowman diary, f. 42v.
  • 4. CJ, viii. 278, 352, 517; CSP Dom. 1660-1, p. 303; 1661-2, p. 449; 1663-4, p. 599; El34/24 and 25 Chas. II Hilary 26.