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Will of Richard Willis of Saint John the Evangelist, Hertford, Hertfordshire,1626

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This is a transcription of the register copy of the will of Richard Willis of Hertford, Hertfordshire, England. [1]
The will was written on 13th October 1625 and proved at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury on 6th February 1625/6.

Spelling, line breaks and punctuation as per the register copy of the will.
Capital F is rendered as such rather than ff.
Abbreviations are expanded in [square brackets].
Crossings through have been included struck out
Bold text and paragraph breaks at change of Items are my own for ease of reading.

Persons mentioned

  • Richard Willis: Testator
  • Jone or Jane Willis: wife of the Testator and co-executor of the will
  • my son and heir Thomas Willis: co-executor of the will
  • my daughter Elizabeth Willis
  • my father Thomas Willis the elder: co-executor of the will
  • my second son Richard Willis
  • my youngest son William Willis
  • William Hickes witness
  • Ann Hickes witness
  • John Roberts witness
  • Joyce Roberts witness

In the name of God Amen the
Thirteenth daye of October in the yeare of our Lord God One Thousand Sixe hundred Twenty
and five and in the yeare of the raigne of o[u]r Soveraigne Lord Charles by the grace of God
King of England Scotland Fraunce and Ireland defender of the faith &c the first I Richard
Willys of Balles in the p[ar]ish of St John the Evangelist Hertford in the County of Hertford
Esqr being sicke in of Body but of good and perfect memory thanks be given unto allmightie God
doe constitute and make this my last will and Testament in manner and forme following First I
bequeath my Soule unto Allmightie god my Creator hopeing for p[ar]don and remission for all my sins
only through the meritts and passion of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ And my body to bee buryed
in the parish Church of St John the Evangelist Hertford aforesaid or in such convenient place there
as my Executors in their discrec[i]ons shall think meete And as touching my temporall benefitts and
blessings wherew[i]th the Lord of his great mercy hath endewed mee most plentifully I give & bequeath
them as here after in this my last will and Testament is sett downe and expressed

Item I give and
bequeath unto my kind and dearly beloved wife Jone Willis All my mannors messuages Landes
Tenem[en]ts Rectories Tithes mills and hereditam[en]ts whatsoever w[i]thin the County of Hertford and
the donac[i]on and the free disposic[i]on of the Vicaridge of St Johns aforesaid Dureing her naturall life
And after her decease then the said mannors and premisses to remaine and come to Thomas Willis
my Sonne and heire and his heires forever

Item I give and bequeath unto Elizabeth Willis my
daughter two Thousand pounds To be payd unto her at the daye of her marriage or when she shall
come to the age of one and Twenty yeares wh[i]ch shall first happen wh[i]ch two thousand I desire my beloved
Father Thomas Willis thelder Esqr to Raise out of the yearely profitts and revenues of Ditton and
Horningsey and to paye it to her as aforesaid And my mind and will is that if Elizabeth my daughter
shall happen to die before she shall accomplish her said daye of marriage or the age of one and Twenty
yeares Then I desire that the said two Thousand pounds maie bee equallie payd unto Richard Willis
[ge]nt my Second Sonne and William Willis my youngest Sonne (or the Survivor of them) as they
shall accomplish theire severall ages of one and Twenty yeres for theire better maintenance and
Advancement

Item I give and bequeath unto the poore people of the parish of St John the Evangelist
five pounds and unto the poore people of the parish of all S[ain]ts Hertford five markes and unto the poore
people of the parish of St Andrews Hertford five nobles And to the poore people of the parish of
Horningsey in the County of Cambridge five pounds And unto the poore people of the parish of Fenditton
in the said County of Cambridge five pounds All wh[i]ch said severall somes of money I desire maie bee payd
at such tyme as my Executors hereafter named shall thinke meete in theire discretions And I doe make
Jane Willis my beloved wife and Thomas Willis thelder my Father aforesaid and Thomas Willis
the younger my Sonne and heire my ioynt Executors of this my Last will and Testament witnes here unto
William Hickes Ann Hickes John Roberts and Joyce Roberts.

Probate [in Latin] granted at London at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury on 6th day of month of February 1625 to Jane Willis widow and Executrix named in this Testament, judgment reserved &c to Thomas Willis the father and Thomas Willis the son.


Sources

  1. Will of Richard Willis of Saint John the Evangelist Hertford, Hertfordshire. PROB 11/148/238. Date: 06 February 1626. (The National Archives, Kew, https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D888566 : accessed 11 Feb 2022)


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