This is the last will of me the said Vincent Denne as touching my inheritance lands and tenements in the County of Kent. First I will that Johane my wife shall receive and take up all rents issues profits and forms(?) of all my houses, lands, tenements and hereditaments whatsoever except my house and lands with the appertuances in Bekesbourne which I have sold to Robert Beke which shall be due from the time of my death until the last day of September which shall be in the year of our Lord one thousand five hundred ninety and five and until that time my mind is that she shall keep my children provided always that she my said wife during that time shall not fell or sell any woods underwoods hedgerows or trees but only for her own fuel and the reparations of my housing.
Item I will and bequeath to John Denne my eldest my capital messuage in Kingston wherein I myself did dwell together with all edifices belonging casements gardens and outyards to the same belonging or appertaining and all other my messuages edifices and buildings that I have in Kingston with all my arable lands pastures meadows woods and other hereditaments situate lying or being in Kingston aforesaid in whose tenure or occupation soever they may be with all my messuages arable lands pastures meadows woods and other hereditaments whatsoever which I have situate lying or being in Bishopsbourne between Barham(?) Down and Langhton Park and between Barham(?) Down and Kingston Reed as also in Barham between Barham Down aforesaid and the Court together with all evidences ? obligar and bonds concerning only the premises before to him bequeathed or only any part thereof to have and to hold all and singular the premises with their and every of their appertuances to the said John Denne his heirs and assigns for ever in fee simple and to have the possession thereof immediately after my wife’s aforesaid estate and term determined expired and ended and not before under these limitations following.
First that he the said John Denne within one quarter of a year after my decease and after knowledge of this point of my will and before she shall make any conveyance of the premises or of any part thereof or otherwise charge or encumber the same or any part thereof and before he shall do any act or acts whereby this my will and the true meaning thereof should be hindered or let shall acknowledge one Recogninhence(?) or Statute before the Chief Justice of England or the Chief Justice of the Common Pleas in nature of a statute staple of the sum of five hundred pounds of lawful money of England at the proper costs and charges in the Law of the said John Denne. Which statute my will is shall be acknowledge to Johane my said wife and to Thomas Denne my brother and to my cousin Robert Denne with this ? in effect to be drawn and penned by the advice and counsel of my said brother Thomas Denne according to the true meaning of this my will that if the said John Denne his heirs and assigns after my wife’s said estate and term ended and expired yearly to pay to my said wife his mother and to her assigns for and in the name of a Jointure and in full recompense satisfaction and discharge of all former Jointures to her in anywise made and of all dowers which she by any means may claim or challenge out of all lands and hereditaments to him the said John by this my will given and out of all other my lands tenements and hereditaments hereafter by this my will to my other children to be given the sum of twenty and five pounds of lawful money of England during her life natural at the feasts of the Nativity of our Lord the Annunciation of our Lady the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist and Saint Michael the Archangel by even portions yearly to be paid in the church porch of the Parish Church of Kingston aforesaid. And also if the said John Denne his heirs and assigns do pay to my daughter Anne (who is seven years of age at Midsummer last) or to her mother during her widowhood to the use of the said Anne after my wife’s said estate ended the sum of six pounds of lawful money of England yearly for the sustenance and maintenance of the said Anne by the space of eleven years after the date of this my will at the said feasts quarterly to be paid at the place aforesaid. And also if the said John Denne his heirs or assigns do content and pay on the feast day of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist which shall be in the year of our Lord one thousand six hundred and two which is the eleventh year after the date of this my will at what time she the said Anne shall be of eighteen years of age.
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to the said Anne or to her assigns (if she be by then living) the sum of one hundred pounds of lawful money of England towards the advancement in marriage of the said Anne at the said church porch of Kingston aforesaid. And also if the said John Denne his heirs or assigns do content and pay at the place aforesaid to the said Anne on the Feast Day of Nativity of Saint John the Baptist which shall be in the year of our Lord one thousand six hundred and five (if she the said Anne be then living) the sum of thirty three pounds six shillings and eight pence of lawful money of England more in full payment of the sum of two hundred marks to her as aforesaid to be paid and if it fortune the said Anne Denne to die before the said time of payment of the said two hundred marks having one child or more of her body lawfully begotten and the same child or children fortune to live until the said time then if the said John Denne his heirs or assigns do content and pay to the said child or children equally between them to be divided at the time aforesaid and at the place aforesaid the said sum of two hundred marks or to the father of the said child or children if he be then alive to the use of the said child or children that then the said statute staple shall be void provided always and my will is that the said annuity of six pounds by the year shall cease at eleven years and if the said sum of one hundred pounds be paid with effect.
And I will that if the said John my son do not acknowledge the said statute with such ? in such sort as before in this my will is declared then my said wife during her widowhood my brothers Thomas Denne, Robert Denne of Darnhill, William Thomas and John Coppin my servants and the survivor of them shall take the issues and profits of all my housing lands tenements and hereditaments to him the said John my son before by this my will bequeathed until such time as they or the survivor of them have levied the said sum of two hundred marks for the said Anne my daughter in manner as is aforesaid to be paid over and before the twenty and five pounds by the year to my said wife and the six pounds by the year to the said Anne my daughter in manner as is aforesaid to be paid which my will is they or the survivor of them shall pay and discharge as is aforesaid out of the issues and profits of the premises and over and before the sum of fifteen pounds by the year which my will is they or the survivor of them shall pay to the said John Denne my son out of the issues and profits of the premises for his maintenance provided always that if my said son John die before he be married either in my life or after my death then I will all and singular the premises before to the said John by this my will bequeathed to William my second son to him and to his heirs forever with the like charge and under the same limitations as before in this my will are limited to the said John so as the said William do acknowledge a statute staple to the said parties with the like ? within one quarter of a year after the death of John my son if he the said John die after my decease or within one quarter of a year after my death if the said John die in my lifetime. And if both John and William do die before they be severally married then I will all and singular the premises before by this my will willed to John my son to Thomas my third son to him and to his heirs forever. And then I will that my said wife during her widowhood my brother Thomas Denne Robert Denne William Thomas and John Coppin and the survivor of them shall take the issues and profits of the premises to the uses aforesaid until such time as the said Thomas shall come to the age of twenty and four years and if all the said John William and Thomas my sons die before they be severally married then I will the premises to Henry the fourth son to him and to his heirs for ever. And then I will my said wife during her widowhood my brother Thomas Denne Robert Denne William Thomas and John Coppin and the survivor of them shall take the issues and profits of the premises to the uses aforesaid and for the performance of my will in such sort as is before limited.
Item I will my manor or messuage of Bursted with all devices lands pastures woods rents and service to the same belonging with the appertuances in the Parish of Bishopsbourne and High Hardres to William my second son to him and to his heirs for ever provided that where I have made a bargain with Robert Beke of Ash next Sandwich in the County of Kent yeoman for my house and land in Bekesbourne for one hundred pounds whereof I have received before the date hereof fifty pounds and am to receive the other fifty at New Years tide next which house and lands were bequeathed to me by my fathers will for term of my life without impeachment of waste the remainder to the said William my son and to his heirs for ever if the said William my son do make sufficient assurance of the said house and lands with their appertuances to the said Robert Beke his heirs and assigns for ever or to such person or persons and their heirs to whom the said Robert Beke shall thereunto ? and appoint at or before the Feast of the Epiphany next ensuing after the date of this my will at the costs and charges in the Law of the said Robert Beke his heirs or assigns and enter into one bond or obligation of two hundred pounds of lawful money of England for the enjoying of the said house and lands with the appertuances and of every part thereof saved harmless of all encumbrances whatsoever done by him the said William or by any other by his means or procurement. And also if the said William do suffer my daughter Jane to have and enjoy the forty pounds parcel of the fifty which I received of the said Robert Beke being in the hands of my brother Thomas Denne and also the other fifty pounds that is to be received at New Years tide next and two years ? of Burstead in lieu of the other ten pounds. And also if the said William my son do enter into bond or obligation of threescore pounds of lawful money of England to be paid Jane with condition for the payment of thirty and three pounds to the said Jane at her age of twenty and one years then I will that the said William my son shall have my said manor or messuage of Burstead with all edifices lands tenements woods and other the premises with their appertuances to him and to his heirs for ever without any further charge. But if he will not agree thereunto but will have the whole sum of one hundred pounds to himself to be paid after my death or do refuse to make assurance of the house and lands in Bekesbourne together with the bond to the said Robert Beke or refuse to make the said bond to the said Jane my daughter then I will that my said daughter Jane shall have authority by this my will to free or cut down all my woods at Burstead and all the timber there according to the statute and that she the said Jane and her assigns shall have seven years utterance of the same woods and timber with free ingress egress and regress in and upon all the grounds at Burstead for her the said Jane and all other person or persons that shall buy the said woods and timber or any part thereof for that purpose during the seven years. And after the said seven years ended I will the said woods and woodlands to him the said William and to his heirs for ever and if he die before he be married then I will that all I have given him before in this my will shall remain to Thomas my third son to him and to his heirs for ever with the like charge and under the same limitations in all points limited to the said William my son.
Item I bequeath to Thomas my third son my two messuages or tenements in the Parish of High Hardres wherein Stephen Mighell and John Bolton do now severally inhabit with all the edifices lands and pastures now in their several ? or occupation situate lying and being in High Hardres aforesaid and Barham (except twenty acres by estimation called Crispes which my father bought of Sir Henry Crispe, Knight). Also I bequeath to the said Thomas all my woodlands called Great Brocktons and a piece of lands of five acres more or less called Littlewood Leaye where I have set up the frame of a little house and also a piece of woodland lying on the same side of the highway there which two last recited parcels of land and woodland I purchased amongst other lands from Lord Chief Baron ? I bequeath to the said Thomas my son all my woodland at Pickett Meare and any woodland I bought of Mr Lawrence below Mellfield and the woodland adjoining to Downings and one acre of woodland lying at Bekondowne or Greene Ways among Mr Brentes woods to have and to hold all and singular the premises with their and every of their appertuances after my wife’s said estate ended to the said Thomas my third son his heirs and assigns for ever. And also I give to the said Thomas one parcel of pasture ground called Green Broctons(?) containing by estimation twenty acres now in the occupation of ? Nethersoll or of his assigns to have and to hold the same to the said Thomas my son his heirs and assigns for ever.
Provided and yet my will is that when by deed of gift and by act heretofore done before witnesses assigned my daughter Margaret only the sum of one hundred pounds now in the hands of Nicholas Beverley of Canterbury my will is she shall have to her paid the full sum of two hundred marks of lawful money of England and for the further payment thereof I will she shall have power and authority by this my will to fell and cut down so much wood in Great Broctons above ten years growth to make up with the said hundred pounds the said sum of two hundred marks to her to be paid. And I will that she the said Margaret shall have three years utterance for the felling of the same in due season provided always and my mind is that the said Nicholas Beverley of Canterbury shall have two years rent of Green Brectons as it now goeth after my wife’s estate ended and after the same two years ended I will that my son Nethersoll shall have two years more of the same Green Broctons and to make the most he can of the same without felling of any woods hedgerows or trees there and afterwards I will that my said son Thomas shall have the same in such sort manner and form as before in this my will is set down and declared.
Item I will to Henry my fourth son to him and to his heirs for ever my farm called Dane or Dane House now with tenure or occupation of James Court or of his assigns (except Littlewood lease) and I further will to the said Henry and to his heirs all the woodland and woods one Colehillside Bonockfield and Brickhouse and all the hedgerows east and south from Eleham Lane.
Item I will to my son Vincent my fifth son my house and lands that Fittel(?) and Sholner(?) dwell in and occupy with all the woods at Waterways Bertham and Lyteham Dane and twenty acres of land called Crispes which my father bought of Sir Henry Crispe with the woods and hedgerows to the same belonging provided always and yet my will is that my said wife during her widowhood my brother Thomas Denne Robert Denne William Thomas and John Coppin and the survivor of them shall take the issues and profits of the three portions to my three youngest sons before given until they severally shall accomplish the age of twenty and five years and longer if the profits of the same portions will not be sufficient to fulfil my will hereafter specified that is to say that Katherine my daughter shall have five pounds of lawful money of England by the year for her education after my wife’s estate ended until such time as the said Katherine be of the age of twenty and one years or be married which of them first happen and that she the said Katherine shall have the full sum of five hundred marks of lawful money of England for her advancement in marriage to be paid at her age of twenty and one years or day of marriage which first happens which portions I will shall rise out of the profits of the said portions over and above the said six pounds by the year and the said two hundred marks levied I will shall be shifted(?) amongst my said three youngest sons at their ages of twenty and five years.
Provided always and my will is that that my said three younger sons on to the issues and profits of their said portions shall be allowed the sum of eight pounds of lawful money of England apiece yearly for their sustenance and education if the same will arise out of the profits of their portion provided also and my will is that every of the said three younger sons shall enter upon his portion before to him bequeathed at his age of twenty and five years if my will may then be fulfilled provided further that if it fortune that the said Katherine my daughter die before her said age of twenty and one years or before she be married that then the sum of one hundred marks parcel of that which should be levied out of the issues and profits of the portions of my three youngest sons shall be paid to my said son John (if he be then living) or else to him that shall have his portion by this my will towards his or their charges and to cost him of them therewith of their burden and charge aforesaid.
And also provided that if it fortune that
Anne my daughter before she attain the age of eighteen years or be married that then my said son John
shall pay to my daughter Katherine for my said three youngest sons the sum of one hundred marks in
discharge of them thereof and then I will they shall have their said portions the sooner thereby provided
also that if my said son William do refuse to make assurance to Robert Beke as is aforesaid that then
the said Robert Beke shall have to him repaid his fifty pounds again and where the said Robert Beke by
his bargain should have ten tons of timber together with the top thereof my mind is the same shall be
taken and felled in Pickett Meare aforesaid and Great Broctons. And my will is that every of my said
sons at such time as they severally shall come to my lands by this my will shall have the evidence
escripts bonds and obligations concerning only the lands and hereditaments to them severally before
willed. Witnesses hereof
Thomas Denne the writer hereof. Vincent Nethersole, Nicholas Beverley, Stephen Mighell, Agnes Hopkin.
By me Vincent Denne.
Probatum in Latin 13 October 1591
Will of Vincent Denne