Maj. Gen. James Chudleigh’s Regiment of Dragoons

ConflictsFirst Civil War
ColonelJames Chudleigh
Area Raised
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Field Armies

Parliamentarian regiment of Dragoons serving in the West Country until Chudleigh defected to the Royalists

Service History


  • December: Skirmish at Torrington?


  • February: Battle of Modbury?
  • April: Battle of Beacon Hill?
  • April: Battle of Sourton Down?
  • May: Skirmish at Bodmin?


Peachey and Turton with a single reference to a Col Chidley's regt of Dragoons tentatively assign this unit to Sir George Chudleigh, James father,1) mainly on the grounds of a belief that the commission would have come from the Earl of Stamford who had personal problems with James. However it would appear that the formation of the unit lay in London and that after serving in the west for a few months it was intended for Ireland. The unit was apparently being raised by officers of Col. Nicholas Mynne's foot who had returned to England for that purpose. The most prominent of these was Capt James Chudleigh.(see Contemporary Documents below) It is also unclear to what extent the unit managed to formalize the various dragoon companies in Devon into a single regiment.


Notable Officers

James Chudleigh

James Chudleigh was captured at Stratton and joined the Royalists. He was shot dead at Dartmouth in September 1643.

Officer List

  • Major Alexander Balfore? (paid to travel to Devon and raise a Dragoon company 2 days after Chudleigh's order)
  • Captain [ ] Thornton (another captain in Mynne's regiment. His arrears from the Bishop's wars were ordered paid along with Chudleigh's but no reference to his presence in Devon has been found)
  • Captain? John Downing (see contemporary documents below)
  • Lt's Humphrey Kibbett & William Reeves (paid to travel to Devon 2 days after Chudleigh's order no reference to their presence in Devon has been found)

For other possible officers see Peachey and Turton War in the West 2)


Contemporary Documents

“That a Thousand Dragooners be levied in Sommersettshire, Devon and Cornewall: Five hundred at the Officer's own Expence, upon Adventure for Land in Ireland; and Five hundred to be taken up upon Ticket, upon Papists, Commissioners of Array, not Contributors, and Delinquents; and these Dragooners to be employed in the Service of the Western Parts, till the latter End of March next; and then to be sent into Ireland: And that a Thousand Pounds be advanced to the Officers, upon Account; and likewise ready Money, to provide Arms, and a Thousand Saddles: And that the said Thousand Pounds, and Money for Arms and Saddles, shall be repaid out of Plate raised in the Counties of Devon and Cornewall, upon the Propositions: And that all his Majesty's Officers, and well-affected Persons, who value the Protestant Religion, and the Safety of their Lives and Estates, in the Peace of the Three Kingdoms, be obliged to assist Captain James Chudleigh, and the other Officers of Colonel Minnes' Regiment, in the speedy Levying of these Dragoons: And that all Officers and Soldiers of the said Regiment be required, in Absence of their Colonel, to obey the said Captain Chudleygh their Officer in Chief, according to the Discipline of War.” 06/12/42 (Journal of the House of Commons: volume 2: 1640-1643 (1802), p. 878.)

“Whereas by an order of the house of Commons Capt James Chidley is forthwith to make his repaire into the county of Devon for the speedy raising of a Regiment of Dragooners for the defence of the King, Parliament & Kingdom. It is this day ordered that you forthwith out of the treasure remaining in your hands do pay unto the daid Capt Chidley for the raising of the said Regiment for the service aforesaid ans in especial for the defence of that county the sum of one hundred pounds.” 06/12/42 (N.A. SP28/262/215)

“Ordered, That Captain Chudleygh and Captain Thorneton shall have their Arrears of their Entertainment in the late Northern Expedition, forthwith paid unto them, as they shall appear to be due, by the Certificate from Sir Wm. Uvedale, late Treasurer at Wars.” 06/12/42 (Journal of the House of Commons: volume 2: 1640-1643 (1802), pp. 878-9.)

“24 Feb 1643 Lent leeftennant John downinge £5 in gold to carrie him into england to receav a troop of dragonees under Capt Chidley” (Grosart (ed) The Lismore papers 1st series vol 5 (1886) pp221-2.)

See Also

1) War in the West: Part 1 The Fall of the West vol 4 p448, Stuart Peachey & Alan Turton 1994, Stuart Press, ISBN 1858040361
2) War in the West: Part 1 The Fall of the West vol 4 p447-50, Stuart Peachey & Alan Turton 1994, Stuart Press, ISBN 1858040361