CARNSEW, John (by 1537-70 or later), of Lincoln's Inn, London and Trecarne in Advent, Cornw.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. by 1537, yr. s. of William Carnsew of Bokelly in St. Kew by Jane, da. and coh. of Edmund Stradling of St. Donats, Glam.; bro. of William. educ. L. Inn, called 1567. m. Anne (d.1579), da. of Gilbert Ashurst of Ashurst, Lancs., 1da.1

Offices Held

Under sheriff, Cornw. 1559-60.2


John Carnsew attended one of the two inns of court patronized by Cornishmen and made a career in the law and local administration. It was doubtless to his father, a prominent figure on the local bench, that he owed his opportunity to sit in Parliament twice for Cornish boroughs, although in 1558 his return was perhaps facilitated by some of his colleagues, who had represented West Looe in Parliament on earlier occasions, and by his kinsman John Arundell I, who procured his own election as a knight for the shire. Nothing is known about Carnsew’s role in this Parliament, but on a list of its Members in use during the second session his name is marked with a circle. After the accession of Elizabeth a complaint that he made about a servant of (Sir) William Cordell earned him a mention in the Commons Journal. Carnsew was still alive in 1570: four years later he was noted as an utter barrister no longer resident at Lincoln’s Inn, which may signify that he had retired to Cornwall.3

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: J. J. Goring


  • 1. Presumed to be of age at election. J. Maclean, Trigg Minor, ii. 170-3; St.Ch.5/T22/31.
  • 2. St.Ch.5/T18/4.
  • 3. C3/1/52, 2/16; Black Bk. L. Inn, i. 354, 457; Wm. Salt Lib. SMS 264.