Philippe de Carteret (1620-1662)

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From A Biographical Dictionary of Jersey by George Balleine

Philippe de Carteret (1620-1662), was Seigneur of St Ouen, Sark, and Rosel, Lieut-Governor and Bailiff.

He was the eldest son of Sir Philippe de Carteret Lieut-Governor and Bailiff, and Anne Dowse.


If he was "scarce twenty-one years old" when appointed Lieut-Governor in 1641, he was born in 1620. When his father was besieged in Elizabeth Castle in 1643, Philippe shared with his mother in the defence of Mont Orgueil, and on her death in 1644 assumed the command. In 1645, when the Prince of Wales was in Jersey, he was knighted by him at a review of the Militia on St Aubin sands.

In July 1647 he was sworn in as Jurat and Lieut-Bailiff, and his cousin Sir George Carteret left all the Bailiff's work in his hands. In 1649 he was "privately married to the beautiful Mistress Anne Dumaresq", daughter of Abraham Dumaresq.

In 1650 Parliament resolved that all his lands should be sold for the benefit of persons exiled from the island but, as Jersey was still held for the King, this had no effect. But on 19 October 1651 he saw from his manor a fleet of 80 Parliamentary ships approaching St Ouen's Bay.

He sent word to Sir George in Elizabeth Castle and called out the St Ouen Militia, and took command. When the enemy landed, the St Ouen company was the only section that stood firm, but it proved no match for the soldiers of the New Model, and Sir Philippe retired with Sir George into Elizabeth Castle. During the negotiations for surrender he was one of the hostages handed over to the Parliamentarians.

By the Articles of Capitulation, Royalists in the Castle were allowed to compound for their estates by paying not more than two years income. In 1652 Francois Messervy and other Parliamentarians urged that Sir Philippe's estates were not protected by this clause, as they were forfeit before the capitulation; but Heane, the Parliamentary Governor, stood firm.

Letter to Parliament

He wrote to Parliament: "I beg not to be forced to act in breach of my own Articles". During this dispute de Carteret visited London and La Société Jersiaise has a letter dated from Jersey (1 August 1652) in which he thanks an unnamed "Noble Sir" for the kindness shewn him during his stay there.

At the Restoration in 1660 he resumed his position as Jurat and Lieut-Bailiff, and, on the resignation of Sir George, was sworn in as Bailiff on 26 February 1661. He died in November 1662, and was buried in St Ouen's Church. He had a son Philippe who became a Baronet and Bailiff, and a daughter Ann (born 1666).

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