The Eighteenth Century in Peter Tavy

By Roger Meyrick

Rectors of Peter Tavy in the Eighteenth Century

Thomas Pocock

The Rev Thomas Pocock took over the parish in 1686 from Rev Andrew Gove. He was the second son of Edward Pocock a scholar of oriental languages and history. They lived in Oxford at which university he obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree. Gove his predecessor had steered the parish through difficult times and was not averse to litigation and local politics. Pocock was quite the opposite; following his father's lead he translated a variety of philosophical books from Latin and at a later stage oriental languages. His is perhaps the best of the memorials in the church, on the northern wall of the Sanctuary.

John Gilbert

Rev John Gilbert seems to have been absent on other duties as often as in his parish, and whilst retaining the rectory of Peter Tavy moved to the Bishopric of Llandaff in 1740 and not until his translation in 1748 to Salisbury did he give up PeterTavy. Whilst clerk to the crown closet in 1757, he achieved the Archbishopric of York on the express wishes of George II. He died in 1761. He also built a new rectory in the village in 1725 that was not replaced until 1911. His daughter Emma married the 3rd Baron Edgcumbe.

John Jago

Rev John Jago, who had been curate to John Gilbert became Rector of the parish when Gilbert finally gave up his rectory of Peter Tavy in 1748. Jago retained his position in Peter Tavy in spite of being Vicar and schoolmaster at Tavistock from 1758 until his death in 1796. Before his marriage to Mrs Ann Beard in 1749 Jago lived in the house now known as Church Cottages where he conducted classes for the children of the parish in the upstairs room. Church minutes record how the children served as a choir for services in church. In 1789, as vicar of Tavistock, he started a Sunday school in that town supported by a parish rate.

George Moore

Rev George Moore, son of the Archdeacon of Exeter came to Peter Tavy in 1796. Like his predecessor he had been working as a teacher in Tavistock. He had attended Cambridge University obtaining his masters degree earlier that year. He was already Rector of Sowton and held the perpetual curacy of Honiton. The plurality of posts again reflects the failure of the tithe process to maintain the priesthood. He died in 1821.

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