COURTNEY, Humphrey (1641-96), of Tremeer, Cornw.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



17 Dec. 1689 - 1690
12 Nov. 1690 - 1695
14 Dec. 1695 - Mar. 1696

Family and Education

bap. 4 Aug. 1641, o. s. of Richard Courtney of Tremeer by Philippa, da. and coh. of Humphrey Prouze of Chagford, Devon.  educ. Balliol, Oxf. matric. 1659; I. Temple 1659, called 1677.  m. 27 Dec. 1666, Alice (d.1684), da. of Sir Peter Courtney† of Trethurfe, Cornw. and h. to her bro. William Courtney of Trethurfe, 2s. 9da. (4 d.v.p.).  suc. fa. 1660.1

Offices Held

Commr. for recusants, Cornw. 1675; freeman, Bodmin 1685–Sept. 1688; stannator, Blackmore 1686.2


Courtney had inherited in 1660 substantial estates in Cornwall and Devon, worth £1,200 p.a., but financial difficulties forced him to sell the manor of Tregear in 1690, and the remainder of the estate was mortgaged for £10,000. These debts may have been occasioned, at least in part, by the cost of repeated contested elections at Mitchell. He had been returned to the Convention at a by-election for this borough, and though defeated at the 1690 election his petition was successful and on 12 Nov. the Mitchell return was amended in his favour. The following month he was listed by the Marquess of Carmarthen (Sir Thomas Osborne†) as a probable supporter in the event of an attack upon Carmarthen’s ministerial position. In April 1691 Robert Harley* classed Courtney as a Country supporter. At the 1695 election Courtney was involved in a double return, but on 14 Dec. the Commons resolved that the return naming him was valid. In the new year he was forecast as likely to oppose the Court in the divisions of 31 Jan. upon the proposed council of trade, but the following month he signed the Association promptly. He died shortly afterwards, and was buried at the Temple Church on 25 Mar.

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: Eveline Cruickshanks


  • 1. Vivian, Vis. Cornw. 115; Polsue, Complete Paroch. Hist. Cornw. iii. 11, 19.
  • 2. Cal. Treas. Bks. iv. 695; J. Wallis, Bodmin Reg. 169; PC 2/72, p. 235; J. Tregoning, Laws of Stannaries, 57.