Will of Mary Lowndes of Cosgrove, spinster, 1805 (proved 1812)

National Archives, PROB 11/1534/460

I Mary Lowndes Spinster of Cosgrove in the County of Northampton do on this Eighteenth day of May Eighteen hundred and five make my last will and Testament in form and manner following To my Sister Anne Lowndes I give and bequeath all my Estates Real and Personal for her life only paying the Legacies hereafter mentioned and all Funeral Expences my wish is to be buried in a plain decent manner in the parish Church wherever I shall reside at the time of my decease to be carried to Church on men’s shoulders and the solemn service to be performed by candle light to my two nephews William & Robert Lowndes I give Fifty Pounds each by way of remembrance only they being both amply provided for to my two other Nephews Richard and Thomas Lowndes I give one hundred pounds each and appoint the said Richard and Thomas Lowndes my Executors to this my last will and Testament the above Legacies to be paid one year after my decease from the Navy 5 per Cents standing in my Name I give to my Friend Ann Gavey one hundred pounds and to Patience Church Fifty pounds in the said 5 per Cents both of which Legacies I will to be paid six months after my death to Patience Church I give all my wearing Apparel Linen &c. &c. my Tent Bed and Bedding also my quarto Bible Bound in Russia To my Friend Ann Gavey I give my Custume of China and Halys Triumph of Temper to my Niece Lydia Lowndes I give all my vol(ume)s that are bound and all the loose n(umber)s she wants to make up her set compleat of the Botanical Magazine all the rest of my Books I leave to my Sister Anne Lowndes to dispose of as she thinks proper To my said Sister Ann Lowndes I leave my share of household Furniture plate Linen and China only begging her to present my Brother with some piece of plate to shew I have not quit forgot him after my Sister Anne Lowndes’s decease I will that all my share in the Estate situate at Bragenham in the parish of Soulbury in the County of Bucks and all money vested in the Funds standing in my name and likewise my share of what is standing in the name of the late Robert Lowndes Esq. be equally divided share and share alike between my two nephews Richard and Thomas Lowndes and my five nieces namely Mary Howard Ann Thomas Lowndes Essex Lowndes Elizabeth Harman and Lydia Lowndes this is my last will and Testament In witness whereof I set my hand and Seal this [blank] day of [blank] in the year of our Lord 18[blank]
20th June 1812
Appeared personally John Freer Congreve of Stoney Stratford in the County of Buckingham Gentleman and John Oliver of the same place Banker and make oath that they severally knew and were well acquainted with Mary Lowndes late of Cosgrove near Stoney Stratford in the County of Northampton Spinster deceased for several years before and up to the time of her death also with her manner and Character of handwriting by having often seen her write and having now carefully viewed and perused the paper writing hereunto annexed purporting to be and contain the last will and Testament of the said deceased beginning thus “I Mary Lowndes Spinster of the parish of Cosgrove in the County of Northampton do \on/ this eighteenth day of May Eighteen hundred and five make my last will and Testament in form and manner following” and ending thus “this is my last will and Testament In witness whereof I set my hand and Seal this [blank] day of [blank] in the year of our Lord 18[blank] they these deponents do say that they verily and in their Conscience believe the whole body series and Contents of the said will particularly the words “Executors to this my last written on an erasure on the Sixteenth line from the top of the first side of the said will to be all of the proper handwriting of the said deceased
J(oh)n Fr[eer] Congreve                J(oh)n Oliver
same day the said John Freer Congreve and John Oliver were duly sworn to the truth of this affidavit by virtue of the Commission hereunto annexed before me George Dineley, Clerk Commissioner

Proved at London 30th June 1812 before the Judge by the oaths of The Revd. Richard Lowndes and Thomas Lowndes Clerks the Nephews and Executors to whom adm(inistrati)on was granted they having been first sworn (to wit) the said Revd. Richard Lowndes before the worshipful John Danbury Doctor of Laws and Surrogate and the said Reverend Thomas Lowndes by Commission duly to administer.  William Selby formerly Lowndes Esqr. and Anne Lowndes Spinster the natural and lawful Brother and Sister only next of kin and the only persons who would have been entitled in distribution to the personal Estate and Effects of the Testatrix in case she had died Intestate first consenting as by acts of Court appear.


Mary Lowndes (b.1737) was the daughter of Richard Lowndes of Winslow Hall (d.1775) and lived with her elder sister Anne (d.1817) at Cosgrove after their father's death. They named their house Cosgrove Priory; see more on the Cosgrove History website. She and her sister inherited from their uncle Robert Lowndes (d.1783).

Mary apparently wrote her will herself but did not get it witnessed. It was nevertheless allowed to stand.

Ann Gavey lived with the sisters at Cosgrove from 1780. Some of her letters, including one to Mary Lowndes, have been transcribed on the Cosgrove History website. She wrote to her brother about Mary's death: "she was taken ill on Tuesday ye 26 of last Month, with a Shivering & pain in her Back & Chest & Spasms all over her, & a Strong Fever, that could not be got ye better off".

Custume of China: William Alexander's The Costume of China illustrated in forty-eight coloured engravings was published in 1805.

Halys Triumph of Temper: William Hayley's The Triumphs of Temper was a Spenserian poem first published in 1781.

Botanical Magazine: publication began in 1787. It contained hand-coloured illustrations. Presumably Mary had the full set.


Copyright 25 January, 2017