Humphrey Trevillian, of Basill in St. Cleather

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About Humphrey Trevillian, of Basill in St. Cleather

Basil Manor is the 17th century remains of the seat of the Trevelyans; the church, mostly rebuilt in 1865, has a tower from the 1400s. Records for the manor under this name were first recorded in 1276.

Today the farm has just 340 acres, with beef and sheep as the main enterprises.

Basil or Trebasil, in the parish of St. Clether, was for long the seat of the Trevelyans. Today there remains a farm and trace ruins of a great house. Among the ruins of the house is a large moorstone oven, now used as a pigstye for the farm. In the immediate neighbourhood are four granite crosses in a good state of preservation.

The Trevelyans, like most of the Cornish gentry, were Cavaliers.

During the tumult of the English Civil War, the Roundheads came to Cornwall to seize the property of the men who remained loyal to the crown. On one occasion a party of Roundheads made shift to seize the Trevelyan squire in his own house. When the Roundheads surrounded the manor, Trevelyan threatened,

"If you come on," said he, "I will send out my spearmen against you."

As there seemed nothing at the back of this threat, since there was no sign of armed men present, come on they did. Whereupon Trevelyan arose up with a teeming beehive and threw it among the Roundheads. Not a man-jack waited for the onslaught of those tiny spearmen. The Roundheads fled, more fearful of the "tiny spears" of an angry army of bees, than the prospect of the iron spears of men.

After the Trevelyans acquired Nettlecombe by marriage to Lady Whalesborough, the original family seat at Basil went to a younger son while the eldest son took Nettlecombe.