The murder of Marie de la Place

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The murder of Marie de La Place

Samuel de la Place is best known as the Rector of St Mary who was dismissed by Dean David Bandinel who installed his own son Jacques in his place. He was also the grandfather of Marie de la Place, who married Guernseyman Josue Guille, who killed her with his sword after their first child died and was hung the day of his trial in 1695

Samuel was the son of a Huguenot refugee from Angouleme, Pierre de la Place and Michelle Girard of Normandy.

He had refused to recognise David Bandinel's elevation when the Calvinist doctrine in Jersey was replaced by the Anglican Church in the early 1600s. He claimed that, as the scriptures do not describe such a position as Dean, he would not accept Bandinel's authority over him.

To Guernsey

After his dismissal by Bandinel he moved to Guernsey and was appointed Rector of St Martin's

Samuel had married Judith, daughter of Josue Bonhomme, Rector of St Lawrence and had seven children, among them Josue, who was appointed to succeed another of the Dean’s sons, Jean, as Rector of Trinity.

Josue married Judith Susanne de Rodon and three of their children survived to adulthood: Pierre, Rector of St Lawrence; Susanne and Marie.


Marie married Josue Guille, but after the death of their infant child he killed her in a rage with three thrusts of his sword.

Records of the inquest and Guille’s Royal Court trial survive.

The inquest jury found that Marie’s death was caused by three blows of her husband’s swort to her chest. They were Jean Bailache, Clement Chevallier, Jacques Lempriere, Edouard Gavey, Edouard Valpy, Philippe Le Gallays, Edouard Lerrier, Jean de Ste Croix, Jean Theodore, Jean Le Feuvre, Francois Cosnard and Benjamin Hocquard.

At his trial on September 11 1695 Josue was convicted by the Royal Court "by his own confession”, and it was ordered that he be taken at once to Gallows Hill and strangled to death.

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