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Sir Francis Kingsmill

Monument in St. Mary's Church, Bridgwater

Picture © Dr. Peter Cattermole

From the style of dress and the collective composition, this marble and alabaster monument probably dates to the death of the younger Francis Kingsmill in 1640, rather than the earlier dates of 1620. The memorial may have been commission by Francis' third son William, of Ballybeg Abbey, MP For Mallow. The reclining figure of Francis Kingsmill the elder is missing the baton in his left hand, which was supposed to mimic the standard depiction of Jesse, the father of David, at the root of Christ's family tree. This was a popular was for father figures to be depicted at this time, as can be seen from this family tree of the Campbells of Glenorchy.

Captain Sir Francis Kingsmill of Ballybeg, County Cork, was baptised 6 January 1570 at Kingsclere. A protestant, he was distinguished for his services in the Irish campaign of Queen Elizabeth, serving under Sir George Carew in 1601-1602. He acquired lands at Ballybeg Abbey, County Cork and was Knighted at Dublin March 1603. That he was buried in St. Mary's Church would suggest he resettled in Bridgwater after his service in Ireland. His wife was Dorothy St. Leger. As well as his three sons he had two daughters Ann and Dorothea, the latter's daughter Elizabeth was the wife of the celebrated Samuel Pepys.

Hic iacet corpus Francisci Kingsmill de Ballibeg in comitatu Corke intra regnum Hiberniae Militis reique militaris scientia praecellentis qui obit 25 die Julii anno Domini 1620. Per fidem sancti effecti sunt Validi in bello Heb. xi. 34.

Hic iacet corpus Henrici Kingsmill armigeri filii dicti Francisci partis. Qui obit 22 die Aprilis 1621. Hic etiam iacet corpus Francisci Kingsmill generosi ... qui obit 16 die Augusti anno Domini 1640.


Here lies the body of Francis Kingsmill of Bellybeg in the county of Cork in the Kingdom of Ireland, Knight who had excellent knowledge of military matters and died the 25th day of July in the year of the lord 1620. Through faith in holy effects they are strong in war. Hebrews 11.34

Here lies the body of Henry Kingsmill soldier, son of the said departed Francis. Who died the 22nd day of April 1621. Here also lies the body of Francis Kingsmill noble... who died the 16th day of August the year of the lord 1640.

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