Historic family ring tracing back to Suffolk Colman family sells at auction for £17,360

The gold armorial ring, which is believed to date from 1640 to 1680, was discovered on the shores of Loch Lomond in November last year.

The crest belonged to the Colman family, of Brent Eleigh. The crest can be seen prominently displayed on the ledge slab of the tomb of Samuel Colman (1569-1653) in St Mary’s Church in the village and on the Brent Eleigh sign post.

 The ring is believed to have belonged to Edward Colman, who become a convert to Catholicism and was later found guilty of treason and hung, drawn and quartered.  Colman established himself at court in 1661 as a bodyguard to Charles II, and by 1673 had been appointed secretary to fellow Catholic, Mary of Modena, wife of James, Duke of York, the younger brother and heir presumptive to Charles.

But in September1678, Titus Oates a renegade Anglican priest made claims of a “Popish Plot”, accusing nearly 550 Jesuits of involvement in plots to assassinate the king with Colman among the accused. He was found guilty of treason and ib November 1678 was hung drawn and quartered, one of at least 15 innocent men to be executed.

Now considered Catholic martyr, Colman was beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1929. Oates was later discredited and convicted of perjury for the Popish Plot.