(2)  Alderman John Copinger


He served the corporate office in 1610, and is mentioned in the Charter of the City of Cork granted by King Charles I.[1]  He was twice Mayor of Cork, in 1616 and 1619.  His name frequently appears in the Council Book of that City.  From an entry 5 February, 1610, it appears that by reason of the "daily great charges" that the Corporation had at every term in Dublin touching "the fee farm of the city and of the Fahie and many other causes as the supposed mortmains and other suites," he was appointed a solicitor for England "to solicit for them to his Highnes and Lords of the Council, touching said causes and such other defects as are in their Charter."  He was allowed ten shillings per day during his employment, "to begin from the first day that he takes his passage here hence, to continue till his coming to this city.  On the 15th March, 1610, he bore a letter of the Mayor and Sheriffs of Cork to Salisbury, returning thanks to him for his former kindnesses to "this poor Corporation."  Cal. of State Papers, Irish Series, 1611-1614.  Under date 15th May, 1618, is the following entry: "As Mr. John Coppinger is behind of 24 pounds ster. which he laid out in defence of the Charter, the Corporation being brought in question by Quo Warranto in the Exchequer, and for that he is to lay out for a motion this Easter term, in said Exchequer, a double Jacobus and 11s. ster. for ending said cause, and as there is no money in hands to pay said 25li. 13s. ster., it is agreed that if said sum be not paid by the Corporation to said John Coppinger by Midsummer day next, some lands or tenements belonging to the Corporation whereof Coppinger shall make choise, shall be mortgaged unto him for the said sum, under the Corporation seal."  "Part of the Colledge is mortgaged for his sum and more to said Mr. John Coppinger."  (Note on margin.)  Other entries will be found under the following dates in which he is mentioned: 1609, 8th, 12th, and 29th January; 1610, 8th October; 1611, 10th March and 1st July; 1612, 12th July and 30th December; 1614, 5th and 10th September; 1615, 31st October; 1616, 20th July; 1617, 13th October; 1618, 27th July, 14th August, and 5th October; 1619, 14th April and 22nd September; 1620, 20th March and 1st October; 1621, 12th August, 1st and 12th October; 1629, 18th July and 7th November; 1630, 29th April and 4th October; 1632, 13th February; 1633, 17th April; 1634, 28th March.

The Alderman aquired vast estates in the County of Cork, at first at least by way of mortgage.  Many of the conveyances and mortgages he appears either to have taken in the names of his sons, or to have subsequently to their assurance to himself settled the properties comprised in such conveyances or mortgages upon them.  One of the earliest deeds inspected is dated 26th August, 1607.  By it -

John Copinger of the city of Cork, alderman, for divers good causes and considerations grants enfeoffs and confirms unto Dominick Roche of Kinsale, gent., and Maurris Gold of Cork aforesaid, merchant, their heirs and assigns, a messuage situate in the city of Cork aforesaid.

A portion of the deed is gone, and the description of the parcels is imperfect.

On one part, however, the messuage was bounded by the messuage of Philip Martell, and on another part by a messuage of Patrick Gold.  The first part of the deed is in Latin, the latter in English.  The latter portion is still well preserved and is as follows:-

The intent purport and meaning and only consideration of the above written deed of feoffment is and at the making and perfecting thereof was that the above named feoffees their heirs and assigns and the survivor of them his heirs and assigns shall stand and be seised of all and singular the said messuage with the hereditaments in this deed of feoffment contained to the use behoof and benefit of Katharin Roche, wife to the said John the feoffor, for and during her natural life, and after her decease to the use behoof and profit of Dominick Coppinger, second son of the said John, for and during the said Dominick's life, and after his death to the use and behoof of the heirs male of the body of the said Dominick lawfully begotten and to be begotten for ever, the said Dominick Coppinger and heirs males aforesaid yielding and paying for and out of the said messuage to the said John Coppinger and his heirs two shillings sterling at the feast of Easter and Michaelmas yearly by equal portions, and for lack of such issue male of the body of Dominick Coppinger then to the use and behoof of such issue male as shall be begotten by the said John upon the body of the said Katharine Roche and the heirs males of the body of the said issue male lawfully begotten and to be begotten, and for default of such issue male then to the use of John Copinger eldest son to the said John the feoffor for and during his natural life, and after his death to the use and behoof of the heirs males of the body of the said John the younger begotten and to be begotten, and for lack of such  heirs males, then to the use, behoof, and benefit of the said John the feoffor and his heirs for ever.

Attesting Witnesses                                                                                                                            JOHN COPPINGER.

John Verdon Morris Roche Edmunde Goulde.

As a specimen of the settlements made as above mentioned on his several sons, the following, which was executed in favour of his third son, James, is given.  It bears date the 23rd October, 1623, and is as follows:-

Settlement on James Copinger, 1623.

The following is an abstract of the settlement made by the Alderman on his second son Dominick, but which strangely is in the possession of the descendants of his fourth son Thomas.

Settlement on Dominick Copinger, 1622

The following is an abstract of the settlement made on the fourth son Thomas.

Settlement on Thomas Coppinger, 1624

Another settlement made by the Alderman on his second son Dominick, is dated the 18th July, 1628, and is as follows:- [4]

Second Settlement on Dominick Copinger, 1628.

Shortly after the marriage of the Alderman's eldest son Sir John Copinger with Katherine Russell, he commenced a suit against his father, and it appears that the Alderman was committed to the Castle of Dublin and imprisoned until he had made some provision for his son.  The ground on which the order was based does not appear, but the Alderman refers to the circumstances in his will.  The following is a copy of the deed he was ordered to execute:-

Settlement on Sir John Copinger, 1627.[5]

Livery and seisin is endorsed and signed by George Galwey, Patrick Arthore, William Kent, Richard Gould, Christopher Wright.  Other names appearing in attestation, &c: Castelian Mason, Edmond Roche, Jo. Madden, Hum. Fobson, Walter Coppinger, Sam. Daine, Thomas Copinger, David Roche, Dom. Roche, David Connell, John Madden, Jno: Coppinger.

Entered in Inquisition post mortem John Coppinger of Cork, Alderman, 3rd April, 1639.

In the Repertory of Decrees in Chancery in Ireland, temp. Car.I., is the following:-

"155. John Coppinger
of Corke, Alderman, Pltf.
James Nugent 
of Keilencichell
in the sd Co.



25 Nov. 1629
That Pltf shall be
established in pos-
of Ballinlosky in
Coy. Cork.
Great part of
Decree destroyed.







In 1635 a question arose between John Copinger and Dominick Roche as to the ownership of certain lands.  The matter was referred to Robert Miagh, Alderman John Gould Fitz William, William Fitz Gerald, and John Roche Fitz Edmond, all of Cork, and the order was as follows:-

31 May, 1637.  Whereas Farr [                ] dakiderry and Clarkduffe qt 29 acres in liberties of Cork equally belong to John Coppinger and Dominick Roche fitz William of Cork, Alderman, in right of inheritance, whereof William Gerald in right of a purchase from Edward Roche fitz Edmond hath about 3 acres, and said Dominick by petition to Lord Deputy in 1635 prayed remedy, who granted his reference dated 15th December, 1635, to the two next Justices of the Peace uninterested to examine, who 12 Nov., 1636 found that said John Coppinger did hold 3 acres and 3 parts of an acre more than the said Dominick, and his Lordship, 21st Feby., 1636, said 3 acres and 3 parts to be divided, and parties referred division to Robert Miagh of Cork, Alderman John Gould fitz Wm., Wm. fitz Gerald, and John Roche fitz Edmond of same, gent., who thereby award said Dominick 1/2 acre next said Dominick's own land on S.W., and also 1 1/2 stange of land from King's highway on N. to said Dominick's land on S. where Clarkduffe lieth, and from the land or close of Wm. Verdon, gent., on E. to said John Coppinger's land on W., &c., the tenants for years of said John Coppinger to enjoy said l 1/2 acres and 1 1/2 stange for their term leased to them by said John  Coppinger, said Dominick receiving from said John Coppinger a proportionable share of rents.

No Witnesses.  Robt. Meagh
John Goolde
Wm. fitz Geralde
John Roche.

Alderman John Coppinger died in 1638 or 1639, and his Will is as follows:-

Will of Alderman John Coppinger, 1637.

Probate granted the 20th August 1638,

to "Catherina."

Sir Walter Coppinger renounces to be Executor.

The following is a copy of his funeral certificate:-

John Copinger of the City of cork, Alderman, deceased, eldest son and heir of John Copinger of the same, gentleman.[7]  The said first-mentioned John took his first wife Johan, daughter of Justice John Meagh of Cork aforesaid, Esq., by whom he had issue one son and two daughters, viz., Sir John Copinger, Knight, eldest son and heir, who took to his first wife Jennet, daughter of Geffrey Gallway of Kinsale, Esq., by whom he had                   and the said Sir John secondly married to Catherine, daughter of                   .  Catherine, eldest daughter of the first‑mentioned John, married to Thomas Coppinger, als Copinger of Cork, alderman.  Johan, second daughter, first married to James Haly of Cork, gentleman, by whom she had                        , and was secondly married to William Roch, of Cork, aforesaid, alderman.  The said first-mentioned John Copinger secondly married Catherine, daughter of Richard Roche FitzPhilip of Kinsale, burgess, by whom he had issue five sons and five daughters, viz., Dominick, eldest, married to Hester, daughter of                            James, second
son; Thomas, third son, Edmond, fourth; Francis, fifth; all four as yet unmarried.  Jennett, eldest daughter, married to Thomas Sarsfield of Cork, alderman; Ellen, second daughter, married to Philip Martell of Cork, gent.; Mayaret, third daughter, as yet unmarried. The said first-mentioned John departed this mortal life at Cork aforesaid, the 23rd of August, 1638, and was interred in Christ Church, in Cork aforesaid, the 26th of the same month. The truth of the premisses is testified by the subscription of James Coppinger of Cork, gent., who hath, &c.

            THOMAS PRESTON, Esq., Ulster, &c.

5th February, 1638.

Funeral Certificates, vol. vii., p. 466.

[1] In this charter the names of Thomas Coppinger, Sir George Coppinger knt., Dominick Coppinger, and Edmund Coppinger also appear. 

[4] The original spelling has not been adhered to in the copy of this deed.

[5] The original spelling of the deed has not been preserved in this copy.

[7] This cannot be correct.  It may mean "eldest surviving son."   That James was the eldest son can be shown from various circumstances.  Take this instance - John, the Alderman, in his Will in 1637 says he is fourscore and above, and probably he was born in 1556, being in 1637 81 years of age, or he may have been born in 1555, and have been 82 at the date of his Will.  But his brother James must have been before this, as may be seen from the following: Sir Walter, James's son, purchased the Cloghan estate by a deed dated 1594. A copy of this deed, which is still in existence, is given ante, p. 35.  It is probable Sir Walter then at least 21 years of age for he enters into a covenant - a thing he was not likely to do before he was of age.  See further ante, p. 37.  But to assume that he was not of age he surely must have been at least say 19 years of age, which would fix the date of his birth in 1575.  Say his father was but 20 when he married and his son Walter was born when his father was but 21, this would give us the date of James's birth as 1554, the very first year after his parent's marriage, which took place in 1553, as may be seen from the bond, a copy of which appears ante, p. 10.  It is quite possible, however, that James Copinger, the father of Sir Walter, was the son of a prior marriage of his father John, and was not a child by his marriage with Kateryne Roche.


Contact us by e-mail   mailto:copinger@talktalk.net

This page was last updated on 25-Mar-2002

Copyright 2000 D. P. & E. Copinger