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At a Meeting of the COUNCIL OF THE SURTEES SOCIETY, held in Durham Castle on Tuesday, March 7th, 1899, the REV. WILLIAM GREENWELL in the chair,
It was ordered that a third volume of Wills and Inventories be edited by Mr. J. E. HODGSON.
PREFACE. . .
Of the ever increasing number of volumes issued by the Surtees Society, perhaps none have possessed more general interest and popularity than the two volumes of Wills and Inventories selected from the Registry at Durham, and edited respectively by the Rev. James Raine and the Rev. William Greenwell. Although the choicest of the wills of the spacious Tudor period were taken for the second volume of the series, published forty-seven years ago, there remains a very large number belonging to the smaller gentry, clergy, yeomen and merchants. Some of them were indeed transcribed or abstracted for, but were crowded out of, that volume. These have been handed over to the present editor by Mr. Greenwell and form the nucleus of the following selection.
The union of the two Crowns, in 1603, in the person of James I., ushered in a period of peaceful development and extended to the country parishes of Northumberland and Durham the security which previously had been enjoyed only by the inhabitants of the walled towns, and, to some extent, by the owners of the greater castles. Wills of a later period, therefore, lose a considerable part of their historical interest and for that reason it is considered desirable not to extend the present collection beyond the reign of Elizabeth.
Specimens of nuncupative wills are given on pp. 35, 97, 100, 114, 157, 164 and 165. The will of 'the lady of Kenton' (p. 10) and the will of Gawen Hoppen (p. 66) supply additional details to the pedigrees of Bennet and Hoppen. Bertram Anderson (p. 60) gives to his sister, Marion Chapman, three tennes of coals '; Simon Wellbury (p. 87) gives legacies to his 'cosins,' the children of his son; Margaret Middleton (p. 122) bequeathes agarnyshe,'—that is, a set of 12 platters, 12 dishes, 12 saucers, and 12 porringers,—of pewter;
and on pp. 99, 123, are preserved some of the names which the farmers and breeders of the day gave to their cattle. An innkeeper's will may be found on p. 52, while the inventory (p. 178) of.the goods of Sir William Hilton affords particulars of the disposition of the rooms and of their contents at Hilton Castle in 1600.
The Editor desires to acknowledge with gratitude the help he has received from the Rev. William Greenwell, D.C.L., F.R.S., who, as noticed above, gave his transcripts of a great number of wills; to Mr. J. J. Howe, for collating proofs with the original documents in the Registry; to Mr. Richard Welford, M.A., for reading the proofs ; and to Mr. Herbert M. Wood, B.A., for proving the burial of several of the testators by extracts from parish registers.
Dec. 14, 15... Edwarde Surteis of Newcastell, draper. To be buried in the churche of Sainct Ny[cholas] on the southe syde of the queyr over against . . . . doore. I give for my laierstall
, 6s. 8d. To the vicar of the towne for my forgotton tyethes, 3s. 4d. To Andrewe Surteis, my soonne, my howes in the Close upon condicion that he and his heirs shall case yereyle sowlle masse and dirige to be song within the churche of Sainct Nicholas for the sowlles of me, Isabell, my wyffe, and all christian sowlles for ever.
To Isabell, my wyffe, my howes in the Syde in which I [dwell], my fyve tenements in the gate nigh unto
the dissolved ho[ouse] .... my daughter Jane: residue to Isabell, my wyffe. Witnesses, Robert Wood, my curatt, Andrew Surteis. [Pr. 1543.]
WILL OF ROBERT BIDDIC.
Feb. 20, 1543/4. Robert Bedyke of Duresme, tanner. To be buryed in the chapell of Saynt Margarett ny unto my wyiffe laytly buryed. To the hy alter for my forgotton tithes, 12d. To 30 preasts the daye of my buryall for masse and dirige to every one of them, bd. To the clarks and chyldren the said daye, 3s. 4d. In almesse to poure folks in breid aill, 5s. I wolle that my executors the daye of my buryall maike on denar to my nebours. To Mawld, my wyffe, in gowld and sylver, 201. To Robert Bedyke, my elder soon, in gowld and sylver, 231. 6s. 8d.
To William Bedyke, my
A member of the wide-spreading Derwentside family of Surtees and a draper in the Side, then one of the chief streets of Newcastle. Many members of this family are buried in St. Nicholas's church.
On April 13, 1517, the mayor and community of Newcastle granted to Edward Surtees, bowmaker, a tenement in the Side, extending from the highway on the east to the castle moat on the west, he paying a free rent of 16s. to the use of the Tyne bridge. Welford, Newcastle and Gateshead, vol. ii.
younger soon, 201. and my emptie barke fatts in parte of payment, and if they will nott soo fare extend I wolle he have my barke to arraise the rest upon.
To Sir John Foster, preast,1 for the manyffold kyndnes that I have found in hym bothe toward my selffe and my soon Robert, trustyng that he wolle continewe them, one ryall in gowld for a token.
WILL OF GEORGE SMITH.
Feb. 24, 1544/5. I, George Smythe of Nonstaynton, in the countie of Duresme, esq., being hole of mynd and perfite remembraunce, dothe order and make thys my last will and testament in maner and forme following: That is to say, first, I bequethe my soule to Almighty God and to the most blissid Virgin, his mother our Lady Saint Marye, and to all the blissid companye of hevin, besicheyng thame all to pray for me; and my body to be beried where it shall please God to call me to his mercye.
Also I will that Anne, my wyffe, after my dethe imediatly enter into all my howses and two parts of all my grounde in Nonstaynton, that is to say these parcells following: First the East-feylde, two Est-closes, Bradmier, the Crokehills, Haverclose, Freermedow, th’orchard, the Dovecoyteclose, Robinson-close, Goldisburgh, Darlyng, the Cowper-carre, Jonkett-carre, Close-carre, Horse-carre, Cow-carre, Scurton-carre, Milne-carre, and 24 Acre-carre, the Come-croks, which, as I think, is skarce the two parts, and if the law will not suffer, that she may have thes grounds whiche I have appointed for terme of her lyffe, and after hir deathe to the right hirs of me, the said George Smythe. And if my son Cuthbert,2 when he comes to the full age of 21 years, make hir assurance that he will not trobill hir duryng hir lyffe of the howse and two parts of the foresaid grounds, then I will that my said wyffe shall geve hym on hundrethe marks towards his levying or ells nott.
WILL OF BARTHOLOMEW PAGE.
May 6, 1544. I, Barthe Paige of Aislebie, within the parishe of Egglisclife, within the countie of Duresme, syke in my bodie but of perfecte remembrance, maketh this my last will and testament as
The Mr. Foster whose kindly offices are so gratefully acknowledged by the testator does not appear in the list of curates of St. Margaret's as given in Surtees, Durham, vol. iv. p. 131.
From the Inq. p.m. held at Durham Jan. 15, 37 Hen. VIII., it appears that the testator died Sept. 5, 36 Hen. VIII., leaving Cuthbert Smyth, his son, 16 years and 40 week's old.
The Smiths of Esh were tenants of Nun Stainton under the nuns of Monketon, and after the dissolution of religious houses they acquired the fee simple. Cf. Surtees, Durham, vol. iii. p. 335, note q.