The will of Alice Byne (died 1738)

In the last post I wrote about my 7 x great grandmother Mary Greene née Byne, the wife of London goldsmith Joseph Greene, and my discovery of new information about her family. The document that definitively confirmed that Mary was the son of stationer John Byne and his wife Alice was the latter’s will, written in 1733 and published on her death five years later.

When Alice Byne (my 8 x great grandmother) composed her will, she had been a widow for forty-three years, her husband John having predeceased her in 1690. Her daughter Mary had been married to Joseph Green since 1701, and indeed their daughter, another Mary, was now married to John Gibson. Another of Alice’s daughters, also named Alice, was a widow like her mother, her husband Thomas Bouts having died at some point after the birth of their daughter Anne in 1715.

The parish church of St James in the village of Badsey, Worcestershire, where Alice Byne owned a meadow

The parish church of St James in the village of Badsey, Worcestershire, where Alice Byne owned a meadow

Alice Byne’s will is a rich source of information about her family and circumstances, and I’ll analyse what it tells us in another post. In this post, however, I want to share my transcription of the will itself. As always, I have mostly retained the original spelling and punctuation:

In the Name of God Amen I Alice Byne of the parish of Saint Buttolph without Aldgate in London Widow being in health of Body and of sound and perfect Mind and Memory (praised be to God therefore) do this fourteenth day of August in the seventh year of the Reigne of Our Sovereigne Lord George the Second by the Grace of God of Great Britain France and Ireland King Defender of the Faith and so forth and in the year of Our Lord One thousand seven hundred and Thirty three make and publish this my last Will and Testament in manner following (that is to say) First I recommend my Soul into the hands of almighty God who gave it me and my Body I commit to the Earth to be decently buryed by my Executrices hereinafter named and after payment of all my just debts and funerall charges I give and dispose of the Remainder of that Estate with which it hath pleased God to bless me in manner following (that is to say) First I give and bequeath unto my Cousin Elizabeth Byne Spinster Ten pounds of lawfull money of Great Britain Also I give and bequeath unto my Cousin Anne Payton Widow ten pounds of like money Also I give and bequeath unto my Cousin Jemima Rix (Wife of Leonard Rix of Bow Lane London Barber) Thirty pounds of like money Also I give and bequeath to my Son in Law Joseph Green and unto Mary his wife ten pounds apiece of like money also I give and bequeath unto my Grandson John Gibson and unto Mary his Wife Ten pounds apiece of like money and unto their three daughter Mary Jane and Elizabeth Gibson I give and bequeath the sum of five pounds apiece of like money Also I do hereby order and direct and my Will and mind is that my said Executrices hereinafter named (out of the residue of my personal Estate hereinafter given and devised to them) do pay unto my Cousin Alice Elliot otherwise Burroughs Weekly and every Week during the terme of her natural life the weekly sume of Two Shillings of lawfull money of Great Britain the first payment thereof to begin and be made within the space of one Week next after my decease Also I give and bequeath unto my said Cousin Alice Elliot otherwise Burroughs the Sum of Ten pounds of like money (over and besides what I have hereinbefore given and bequeathed unto her) to cloath (?) her in a decent manner which I desire my said Executrices to pay unto the said Alice Elliot otherwise Burroughs within one month next after my decease Also I give and devise unto my daughter Alice Bouts Widow and to her heirs forever all that my Meadow situate and being in the parish of Badsey in the County of Worcester near the Will Taile (?) called Crabb Tree Close which I purchased of Elizabeth Badsey and Richard Badsey her Son now or late in the terme or occupation of Charles Simpson his undertenants or assigns also I give and devise unto my said daughter Alice Bouts all that my freehold Estate with the appurts Situate and being in Distaffe Lane London and in the parishes of Saint Margaret Moses Fryday Street and Saint Nicholas Coleabby or one of them and now or late in the Tenure or Occupation of William Ashurst Gentleman his undertenants or assigns for and during the Term of her natural life and from and after her decease. I give and devise the same Estate in Distaff Lane aforesaid unto my Grand daughter Anne Bouts for and during the term of her natural Life and from and after her decease to the heir or heirs of her Body lawfully to be begotten share and share alike in case there shall be more than one for and during his her or their natural life or lives and for want of such Issue or in case of their decease then I give and devise the same Estate in Distaff Lane aforesaid to my said Grand daughter and God daughter the said Mary the said Wife of the said John Gibson and to her heirs for ever All the rest and residue of my Real and personal Estate whatsoever and wheresoever and of what nature kind or quality soever I give devise and bequeath unto my said daughter Alice Bouts and my said Grand daughter Anne Bouts their heirs Executors Admrs and assigns equally to be divided between them share and share alike and I do hereby make constitute and appoint my said daughter Alice Bouts and my said Grand daughter Anne Bouts joynt Executrices of this my last Will desiring them to perform the same according to my Will and Mind herein expressed And I do hereby request and desire my Cousin Richard Boulton the Elder to be Overseer of this my said Will and to assist advise and direct my said Executrices in the due Execution thereof and I do hereby give and bequeath unto my said Cousin Richard Boulton for his care and trouble in assisting my said Executrices two Guineas to buy him a Ring and I do hereby revoke annul and make void all former and other Wills by me at any time heretofore made In Witness whereof I the said Alice Byne have to this my last Will and Testament contained in one sheet of paper Sett my hand and Seale the day and year first above written. Alice Byne. Signed Sealed published and declared by the said Alice Byne as and for her last Will and Testament in the presence of us who did each of us subscribe our names as Witnesses hereunto in her presence and at her request. Will: Jones. John Gibson.  John Chorley.

This Will was proved at London before the Worshipfull Robert Chapman doctor of Laws and Surrogate of the Right Worshipfull John Bettesworth doctor of Laws Master Keeper or Commissary of the Prerogative Court of Canterbury lawfully constituted on the ninth day of March in the year of Our Lord One thousand seven hundred and thirty eight by the Oaths of Alice Bouts Widow the Daughter and Anne Bouts Spinster the Grandaughter of the said deceased and Executrixes named in the said Will To whom administration was granted of all and singular the Goods Chattels and Credits of the said deceased they being first sworn well and duly to administer the same.

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