Descendants of Philip BURNETT of Levisham



Philip gave his age as "above 28" when applying for a licence to marry in 1740 - suggesting that he was born before 1712. Although married in Brompton-by-Sawdon, Philip and wife Hannah had their children baptised in Levisham and Lockton; there are also deeds of conveyance of land and property, in the Deeds Register for the North Riding of Yorkshire, which firmly place Philip in Levisham in 1741 and in Lockton after 1746. In some of these records Philip is recorded with the surname BURNAND in others he is recorded with the surname BURNET[T] or BURNIT[T]. More or less conclusive evidence that BURNAND was a local variant of the name BURNETT.

It was long suspected that Philip was related to John Burnett, son of Thomas, whose baptism was recorded in Levisham in 1727 with the surname BURNAND. John later became an innkeeper and farmer in Egton. The proof was found, in the above Deeds Register, in a "memorial of an indenture of assignment" dated 1 Jul 1793, by which 'ownership' of land and property in Levisham was assigned to Robert Skelton - then the incumbent at Levisham - by John Burnett of Egton and Philip Burnett of Lockton, "..brothers and administrators of .. the estate of Mary Burnett ..late of Levisham, spinster, deceased.." . Philip was therefore also a son of Thomas Burnett of Levisham and his estimated year of birth 'fits' with documented baptisms of known children of Thomas, in Levisham, beginning with Robert in 1716 and ending with John in 1727.

Land tax returns for Levisham, 1781 - 1785 inclusive, list a Philip BORNET, Philip BONET and Philip PERNAND as the tenant of a particular plot of land in Levisham owned by Elizabeth Walmesley. All of these entries obviously refer to the same man - this Philip BURNETT.

Philip is described as a "yeoman" or a "farmer" in various documents but in the earliest document, his 1740 marriage licence bond, he was described as a "malster" [maltster - a maker of malt]. He obviously had some involvement with the brewing of beer - like his younger brother John and their father Thomas.

There is an intruiging baptism in the parish register for Middleton-by-Pickering the 'mother' parish within which Lockton was a chapelry. Isreal son of Thomas Burnett was baptised on 10 Mar 1713. Could Isreal later have become known by a different name? Could this have been the baptism of Philip Burnett?

Philip's burial record in the Lockton parish register for 1796 gives age at death 88yrs - suggesting a birth in c 1708. This is consistent with his given age at marriage in 1740.


Hannah Skelton and Philip Burnett were married by licence in 1740 - one of the bondsmen for the licence was Joseph JACKSON. Philip and Hannah Burnett named one of their sons Matthew. These two facts provide enough circumstantial evidence to suggest that Hannah was the child baptised at Middleton by Pickering parish church on 3 Sep 1721, daughter of Matthew Skelton of Wrelton. This Matthew Skelton married Elizabeth JACKSON at Wrelton, on 22 Jan 1712.

The 1740 licence bond stated that Hannah Skelton was aged "above 22" - hence born during or before 1718. If this given age was correct then Hannah would have been about three years old when baptised in 1721. It seems more likely that Hannah was in fact a minor at the time of her marriage to Philip Burnett and that she lied about her age on the marriage bond. The marriage by licence would have avoided banns being read in her home parish and neither Philip nor Hannah had any known connection with the parish of Brompton-by-Sawdon, where the marriage took place.

Hannah's burial, in 1785, was recorded in the Lockton parish register under the surname BURNARD. In the Bishop's Transcript of the Lockton register the event was recorded under the surname BURNAND.