Will of William Whitley

Transcribed by Frances Belsham

Will of William Whitley

Wills are generally written without any punctuation or abbreviations. There is often alternative spelling of some words and using upper case letters which do not always mean the start of a new sentence.

In some instances two lower case letters at the start of a word can denote an upper case letter, such as ff for F

Neither are they divided into paragraphs but are continuous lines of writing This can make documents difficult to read or understand.

This post shows the Will exactly as it was written with no attempt to break it down into paragraphs. Done in this way it shows exactly how the original document is written. As the documents are sometimes very large each line of writing in the document sometimes takes up two lines when it is transcribed in to the web site


  1. In the name of God Amen I William Whitley of Wivenhoe in the County of Essex
  2. Marriner and ffisherman being very sick and weak of body but of sound and perfect memory at sealing
  3. Of these present do this Twenty fifth Day of November in the Eight year of the Reign of our Soveringe
  4. Lord George by the grace of God of Great Britain ffrance and Ireland King Defender of the faith
  5. Et Anno Dom 1721 Do make Constitute and ordaine this to be my Last will and Testament in
  6. manner and form following first and principally I commend my soul into the hands of Almighty God
  7. who gave it me and my Body I commend to the Earth to be buried in Christian and DDecent Manner at the
  8. Discretion of my Executor herein after named Item I give unto Mary my Loving Wife all her household
  9. Goods Linnen and plate which was hers before marriage Item I give unto my Sons John and Abraham
  10. Whitley my best suits of Clothes Item I give unto my Son in Law Michael Cock what moneys is Due to
  11. Me for his board without being accountable to my Executrix for the same Item I give unto my two Sons
  12. In Law Ambrose and Michael Cock two gold rings to be sold they to buy themselves two mourning Rings
  13. with the money Item I give and bequeath to my Son in Law Jeremiah Downes my Lease of
  14. my upper and middle Laying in North Geton in ffingeringhoe Item I give unto my Son William Whitley
  15. My Lease of my Lower Laying and the Laying next the upper one being in North Geton aforesd
  16. Item I devise and bequeath all the Rest and Residue of my household goods Linen plate Smack
  17. Boat oysters and all other utensils whatsoever not before Bequested to be equally Distributed between
  18. Mary my Loving wife and my five Children Susannah William Mary John and Abraham
  19. Item I devise and bequeath all my Copyhold Estate holden of the mannor of Wivenhoe to be sold for
  20. the best price that can be got immediately after the decease of my said wife and one halfe part
  21. of the said money I give to my two sons John Whitley and Abraham Whitley and the other halfe of the
  22. money I give equally monong my other three Children vis Susannah William and Mary to be equally divided
  23. among them or the survivers of them and if it shall so happen that my son John or Abraham Should dye
  24. under age and without issue then his part shall go to the Survivor of them two And of this my Last will
  25. and Testament I make Constitute and ordaine Mary my Loving Wife to be whole and sole Executrix
  26. And I do hereby utterly make void all other former wills Testaments Gifts Legacys and Executor
  27. heretofore made ratifying and Confirming this and none other to be my Last will and Testament
  28. In Witness whereof I have here unto Sett my hand and Seal the Day and year first above Written                                                      the mark of
  29. William X Whitley
  30. Signed Sealed Published and
  31. Declared by the said William Whitley
  32. To be his Last will and Testament
  33. In the presence of us
  34. Elizabeth ?
  35. John Potter
This page was added on 12/03/2024.

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