Will and inventory of Silvester Michell, innholder, 1610-11

Herts RO 51AW31, 25/2181

Will of Silvester Michell

In the name of god, Amen. The  xxith day of December, Ann: Dni. 1610. I Silvester Michell of Winslow in the County of Bucks Inholder, being sicke in body, but in good & p(er)fect memorie, god be thanked for it, do make this my last will & testament in manner & forme following. First I bequeath my soule unto Allmighty god, who hath created me, and redeemed me by his sone Jesus Xrist, by whose merits onely I trust to be saved, And my body to be decently buried in the churchyard of Winslow. Also concerning my worldly goods first I give unto Alice Brodhurst my wyves daughter the summe of fifteen pounds to be paid hir within one year after my decease. Item I give unto Peter Allen sonne of Richard Allen the summe of five pounds to be payd unto my overseers within one year after my decease for his best use. Item I give unto the poor of the parish of Winslow thirtie shillings, And to the reparations of the church iij s iiij d. I give unto Anne Webster my servant ten shillings, And to Robert Benson my servant vi s viij d. And to Anne Windmill my servant iij s iiij d. The rest of my goods unbequeathed I give unto Mauld my wife, whom I make my sole executrix, and my beloved frends Thomas Bowden & William Spooner my overseers, to see this my last will & testament p(er)formed. In witnesse whereof I have hereunto set my hand the day and year first above written.

Silvest(er) Michell his mark

These being witnesses
Robt: Maynwaring, [signature]
Will  Battry [signature]

Letter from the Archdeacon's office

[Latin text]

Jacobus Rolfe in Artibus mag(iste)r vene(rabi)lis viri mag(istr)i Joh(an)nis Byll sacre theologie profess[oris ---]rogivi divi Albani London’ dioc’ Offi(cia)lis ++++e

deputat’ dilecto nobis in Christo M(agist)ro Rob(er)to Maynewaringe Cl(er)ico vicario de Wynsloe in Com’ Buck’ n(ost)req(ue) Jur’ Salute(m) in d(omi)no. Cu(m) Silvester

Michell p(ar)o(c)hie de Wynsloe pred’ via(m) universe carnis audito prius per en’ (Vt accepimus) Testam(en)to nuper ingressus est Cu(m?)q quida(m) Petrus Fige

de Wynslo pred’ gen’ Cora(m) nobis personali’ constitut’ et fecit fide’ Matilda’ Michell vidua’ executrice’ in h(uius)mo(d)i testam’ pe+d’tibus annex’ no(m)i(na)tam

non modo etate admodu(m) exvecta(m) sed etia(m) adv(er)sa valitudine in presenti laborare: R?ob’ m?ag’ de tuis fidelitate et industria plena(m) in d(omi)no fiducia(m)

obtinen’ Ad admittend’ in forma Juris Insinuac(ion)em Testam(en)ti pred’ p(re)(s)entibus annex’ et Probac(ion)em eiusde(m) ac ad admittend’ administrandu’

o(mn)i(u)m et sing(u)lor(um) Bonoru(m) Juriu(m) Creditoru(m) et Catalloru(m) que fuerunt d(ic)ti defuncti tempore mortis sue prefate Matilde Michell executrici d(ic)to

testam(en)to no(m)i(n)at(e) si ea cora(m) vobis acceptare voluerit Necnon ad onerand’ eand(em) executrice(m) per sacramentu(m) suu(m) ad s(an)cta dei Evangelia

corporali prestand’ ac de fideli inventario o(mni)um et singulor(um) Bonoru(m) Juriu(m) Creditor(um) et Catalloru(m) que fuerunt d(ic)ti def(uncti) tempore mortis

sue (ut p’ fert’) conficiendo ac illud in reg(istr)um d(ic)ti d(omi)ni Archi(diaco)ni exhibendo Inq’ eisde(m) bonis fidel’ Administrand’ ac debita d(ic)ti defunct(i)

et legata per eund(em) quat(e)nus facultates sue suppetunt persolv fidel’ persolvend’ deq’ fideli Cumputo Calculo sue Ratiocinis super Ad’ne

sua h(uius)mo(d)i cora(m) nobis aut alio Judice in hac parte competen’ quoci(enscum)q’ + ad id congrue fuerit requisita reddend’ prout leges Jura

et constitu(tion)es eccl(es)iast(ica)lis huius Regni Anglie exigunt et requirunt Ceteraq(ue) o(mn)ia et sing(u)la faciend’ expetend’ et expediend’

que in et circa p(re)missa necc(essari)a fuerunt et op(p)ortuna Tibi tenore p’entiu(m) vires n(ost)ras ac plena’ in d(omi)no Com(m)mittimus potestatem mandamus

quatenus h(uius)mo(d)i Juramenti si delati Testamentu(m) pred++ ac totu(m) et integru(m) pr(oc)essum Cora(m) vobis in hac p(ar)te habitu’ et factu(m) nobis aut

Surrogato n(ost)ro sive alii Judici in hac p(ar)te Competen’ cuicu(m)q manu tua p’p’a? subscript’ per alique’ fidele’ nu’ciu’(?) debite transmittatis

vuam’ pend’ibus Dat’ divi Albani vicesimo octavo die mens’ Januarii Anno D(omi)ni iuxta Curs(um) et Computat(ionem) Eccl’ie Anglicane 1616


James Rolfe, master of arts, official [and?] deputy of the venerable Master John Byll, professor of theology, … of St Albans of the diocese of London, to our beloved in Christ Master Robert Maynewaringe, cleric, vicar of Wynslow in the county of Bucks, and of our jurisdiction, greeting in the lord.

Whereas Silvester Michell of the parish of Winslow aforesaid, has lately gone the way of all flesh, his will having previously … been heard (as we understand), and whereas one Peter Fige of Winslow aforesaid, gentleman, in our presence, appeared personally and gave an oath that Matilda Michell, widow, named executrix in this will herewith annexed, was not only somewhat advanced in age, but was also suffering from bad health at present. 

(We entrust to you) Master Robert from your faith and industry obtaining full trust in the lord to admit in the form of the law the entering of the aforesaid will with the present documents annexed, and the probate of it, and to grant the administration of all the goods, rights, credits and chattels which were the said deceased’s at the time of his death, to the aforesaid Matilda Michell, named executrix in the said will, if she will accept in your presence, and also to put the said executrix on her oath to be taken physically on God’s holy gospels, and to complete (as …)  a faithful inventory of all the goods, rights, credits and chattels which were the said deceased’s at the time of his death, and to enter it into the register of the said lord archdeacon, and to perform in the same goods faithful administration and faithfully (pay the) debts of the deceased and legacies (made) by him as far as her resources permit, and to return a faithful calculated account of her reckoning on her administration, in the presence of ourselves or another judge competent in this matter, whenever she may be suitably required, just as the laws and ecclesiastical constitutions of this kingdom of England demand and require.   And she is to do, perform and carry out all other things which are necessary and opportune in and around the foregoing.

We entrust to you by the tenor of the present documents our full powers in the lord (and) send our power as far (as it goes) if, having been informed, you duly send over by some faithful messenger the aforesaid will and the whole and entire (record of) proceedings held and performed in this matter in your presence, to us or our surrogate or any other judge competent in this matter, signed below in your own hand, with … attached.

Given at St Albans on 28 January 1616 according to the calendar and computation of the Church of England.

[text continues in English]

The forme of the oath to be ministred the Executrix layeinge her hand upon the Bible or newe testament

You shall sweare that this will herewit annexed is the true and last will and testament of Silvester Michell yo' husband deceased so far as you knowe and believe And that you shall well and truly performe the same in payeinge of his debts and legaces as farfrth as his goods debts and chattels thereunto will extend and the lawe will chardge you And that you shall make or cause to be made a true and perfect Inventory of all and single the same goods debts and cattells and the same exhibit into the court of ye Archdeacon of St Albans And further you shall make a just true & faithful Accoumpt thereupon whensoever you shal be thereunto lawfully required So helpe you god and the holy contents of this booke

[signed] Tho Rakett[?]

[signed] Ja: Rolfe

Inventory of Silvester Michell

The true and p(er)fect Inventory of all and sing(u)ler the goods debts and cattells of Silvester Michell late of Wynsloe in the Countye of Bucks Inholder Deceased made and praysed the xxvth daye of January Anno Domine iuxta cursum &c 1610 by Peter Fyge William Spo(o)ner and Nicholas Michell

Inprimis in the hall a table a frame vii stoles and a chair   xvi s
Item two paire of pothangers a paire of andirons fyre shovell tongs and a paire of bellowes   vi s viii d
Item in the little p(ar)lo(r) a cupbord a chest a forme and a paire of tables xxiiii s
Item a standinge bedsted a trundle an old Bed and other furniture     xlvi s viii d
Item in the lower p(ar)lo(r) a little table ii chairs and two stooles xvi s
Item two featherbeds iii boulsters ii blanketts five curtaynes ii coverletts and a paire of andirons  iiii li v s
Item a table a frame and a forme at the staire head x s
Item a table a frame a forme ii Carpetts and ii formes in the great chamber iii li
Item the waynscott & benches a chaire and a little settle   xl s
Item a standinge bedstead wi(t)h hanginge and a trundle bed  iii li
Item ii featherbeds a boulster ii ruggs and a blankett v li
Item a paire of Andirons a fyer shovel and xii Cusheons   xv s
Item in the blew Chamber a table a forme a chaire and iii stoles x s
Item ii standinge bedsteds & ii trundle bedds xl s
Item ii two feather bedds ii boulsters ii pillows iiii coverletts and a blankett iii li
Item a square table a forme & benches in the little Roome x s
Item in the chamber over the kittchin a bedsted a mattris a coverlet & a chest x s
Item in the chamber over the little p(ar)lo(r) a table top a frame a forme & a wicker chaire x s
Item ii trunks a chest & a deske xxvi s viii d
Item a standinge bedsted a trundle bed a fether bed a boulster a blanckett a pillowe and a coverlett  l s
Item xiiii paire of sheets xii pillowbeers two Dozen and a halfe of napkins vi tableclothes and eight towells viii li
Item all the pewter xxx s
Item a furnace with the rest of the brasse spitte and dripping panns   v li
Item in the seller wyne potte stone potte hoggs head & other lumber at the staire head          iii li
Item  in Grayne    vi li xiii s iiii d
Item wood and timber   xx li
Item the haye   viii li
Item two hoggs xv s
Item the plate   viii li
Item a fatt a kill haire* w(i)th other lumber   xl s
Item his owne Apparell        iii li vi s viii d
Item the Corne upon  the ground   vii li
Summa tot(a)lis                  Cviii li xii d

*According to the OED, kiln-haire is an obsolete version of kiln-cloth, meaning a cloth on which grain was laid in a kiln.

The inventory clearly refers to the Bell, which Silvester held through his wife, the widow of Anthony Jackson (d.1591). However, it is called the Rose in the schedule of tenants of 1610, which also says that he held 15 acres of land. See Mitchell family for more information about Silvester.

Click on the pictures for full images of the documents:

The will:

Will of Silvester Michell


The letter from the Archdeacon's office:

Letter about Silvester Michell's will


The inventory:

The inventory of Silvester Michell



Copyright 7 June, 2018