‘To my daughter Joan Foote my freehold house with the lands belonging called Hubbard Damions in Wivenhoe; if she die without issue, to Joan my loving wife for life, and after to her children so as they pay to the children of my four sisters … £10 equally to be divided among them. Whereas I stand seised of two copyholds called Longlands and Taselers holden of the manor of Wivenhoe, and by the customs of the manor my wife is to have the choice of the best copyhold for life, I devise the other copyhold to my daughter Joan; if she die before she be of age and without issue, according to the said customs, Longlands to Peter Foote my brother William’s son and Taselers to William Foote my brother John’s son.
To Joan my daughter £40 and my cattle, viz. beasts, sheep, horses, mares, geldings, lambs and bullocks …The £40 with the value of the cattle shall be put forth to honest sufficient men to her use, taking of them sufficient sureties for repayment, and the £40 and the value of the cattle with the increase and profit shall be paid to her at 18 or marriage, and be so as she marrieth with the advice and consent of her mother and my supervisor … otherwise she shall not have her legacies until 21. If she die before without issue, the £40, value and profit I bequeath to the poor people of Wivenhoe £5 [and several other beneficiaries or charitable causes such as the maintenance of poor scholars]… To Joan my daughter 2 great cauldrons of brass with ears, 4 great kettles, 2 small kettles, 1 little kettle with feet, I little copper kettle, 1 great brass pot, 5 small brass pots, 1 chafer anlaver of brass, 1 silver spoon, 7 candlesticks of brass, 2 chafing dishes of brass, 2 brazen skillets, 2 scummers, 1 fire pan, 1 pair of tongs, 1 pair of creepers, 3 little old kettles, my two best posted bedsteadles (1 in the solar in the west end of my dwelling house, the other wherein I lie and the trundle bed that runneth under it), 3 feather beds with all the furniture to them belonging, 1 other feather bed, 1 red mantle, 2 other posted bedsteads to be left in the house where I dwell, 2 stock [recte flock?] beds, 4 great chests, 3 chairs, 2 of my best cobirons, a counter table, a round table, my stained cloths in the hall and parlour, 96 pound of good pewter, 2 trammel, 6 pairs of sheets, 2 other pair of fine sheets, 1 bearing sheet, 1 casting sheet, 6 pillowberes, 1 diaper tablecloth, 1 holland tablecloth, 2 other tablecloths, 1 damask towel, 1 dozen fine table napkins wrought with white work, 12 other table napkins, 5 spits, 1 dripping pan, 2 cupboards, and one pair of wafer irons, to be delivered to her at 18 or marriage; if she died before, to my wife to her own proper use …
My wife shall have the keeping and bringing up of my daughter until she is 14 and have towards it 40s., she to be taught to read and make plain work of linen and to be educated in the fear of God, yearly out of the revenues of my daughter’s lands. After 14 or if my wife die before, my daughter shall be at the government of my supervisor until marriage or 18; if he decease before, at that of my cousins William Cardinal and Mr John Morton. My supervisor shall be guardian and have the custody of my daughter’s lands, with the £40 and value of the cattle, until she is 18 or married and then make account thereof to her before my cousins. If my supervisor die before, my cousins shall have the custody of her lands likewise. My wife shall be bound to my supervisor in £100 for the performance of my will, and she shall lop, fell or take any timber or trees on the copyhold only for necessary housebote, firebote, gatebote, ploughbote, stilebote, hedgebote and stakebote and shall keep the house on the tenement in reparations. If she marry again, he whom she intendeth to marry before marriage shall be bound to my supervisor in £100 with like conditions…’
This edited extract is reproduced by courtesy of the Essex Record Office who also hold a copy of the original will [ERO Reference: D/ACW 3/204]. The complete transcription can be read in Emmison, F. G., Elizabethan Life, Wills of Essex Gentry & Yeomen, Essex Record Office Publication No. 75, Essex County Council, 1980, p124-5.
[Note: some of the property named in this will can still be found in the 1799 Survey Map of Wivenhoe see here.]