BODRUGAN, William II (d.1416), of Bodrugan in Gorran, Cornw.
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Family and Education
Commr. of array, Cornw. Dec. 1399, Nov. 1405; inquiry Jan. 1412 (liability to contribute to a parliamentary subsidy).
J.p. Cornw. Mar.-July 1410.
Both William and his elder brother Otto took their mother’s maiden name, which adds difficulty to an already complicated set of family relationships. They did so, no doubt, because on the basis of settlements made by their maternal grandfather in 1386 and 1389 they stood to inherit the bulk of the Bodrugan estates. Otto evidently died some time in the early 1390s, and it was William who, with the support of his mother’s illegitimate half-brother, William Bodrugan I*, sought to gain control of the whole inheritance after the death of a distant cousin’s husband, Sir Richard Cergeaux*, in 1393. First he quarrelled with his mother’s third husband, John Trevarthian*, over ownership of the manor of Bodrugan, their differences being only temporarily patched up by a notarial instrument dated 28 Dec. that year; and then in 1398, even though three years previously he had formally acknowledged the rights of Cergeaux’s widow and daughters to the manors of Tremodret and Trevelyn during his mother’s lifetime, he and William Bodrugan ‘the bastard’ entered these properties by force. For this last action they were summoned before the King’s Council.1 But clearly William was placed in a better position than his illegitimate namesake, and thereafter he kept out of the family confrontations. He seems to have been on good terms with his mother’s fourth husband, Robert Hill of Shilston, j.c.p., for in June 1407 he obtained a royal licence to surrender his estate in lands at ‘Trewethan’ to a chantry at the altar known as ‘Bodrigannesauter’ in the collegiate church at Glasney in Penryn, when his mother and Hill were providing for services to be held there. In the following year his mother made over to him the manors of Restronguet, Bodrugan, Tregrehan, Trewarrick, Trethack and Trethym; and in 1412, by licence of Bishop Stafford of Exeter, he and his wife were permitted to have their own oratory at Restronguet. Bodrugan’s returns to Parliament first for Liskeard and then for the shire reflect his increasing importance as his share of the family estates expanded. In the Michaelmas term of 1415 he was required by the Exchequer to pay relief fines of £10 for Restronguet, only to be then discharged on production of a general pardon dated 1 Nov. that year.2
Bodrugan’s career is otherwise somewhat confused with that of his uncle of the same name. But after 1398 he was generally known as William Bodrugan ‘esquire’, and this designation helps to distinguish between them. In 1398 the younger man took out a pardon of outlawry following his failure to answer