Murder of Nicholas Radford, 1455.

Nicholas Radford, a Justice of the King’s Peace, was murdered on 23 October 1455. The murder was associated with the Courtenay-Bonnville dispute, which saw two powerful landowners in the South West engage in a private and violent feud.

Murder of Nicholas Radford

The petition regarding the murder of Radford reads:

“…Radford was at his place called Uppecote in Cadleleigh and was in the King’s peace, and Thomas Courtenay came with others bearing arms and attacked Radford’s place and set the gates of the place on fire. Radford came and admitted them after Courtenay (said) that he and his goods would be preserved. While Courtenay distracted Radford, the men stripped the place, turning Radford’s sick wife out of bed and carrying all away. Afterwards Courtenay said that he had to take Radford to his father and then departed. Philip and the others then struck Radford on the head with a glaive so that his brain fell out and cut his throat. Afterwards at his burial when his body lay in his chapel, Henry Courtenay came with others and took upon him the office of coroner and held an inquest without authority. Afterwards they cast his body from the coffin into the grave and threw the stones conveyed there for Radford’s tomb onto the body crushing it. Justice is requested for the … so that an example is not set if the murder, felony and robbery pass unpunished”.

Content related to the murder of Nicholas Radford

Standoff between the Earl of Devon and Earl of Wiltshire

Regional feuds and violence in the 15th century

External Links

Nicholas Radford, History of Parliament Online

The murder of Nicholas Radford, Dartmoor Resource.


Inscribed slate tablet at Upcott Barton, composed and erected by the owner circa 2015

(Lobsterthermidor (talk) 22:53, 3 May 2016 (UTC)) • Public domain

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