ID: MARG_122

TitleWill of Katherine Durrell widow of West Mersea 1546
AbstractWill of Katherine Durrell, widow of West Mersea, 19 May 1546 transcribed from ERO D/ABW 12/35

Transcription by Elaine Barker January 2022
There is a translation to Modern English further down the page

In this post-Reformation will of 1546, at the end of Henry VIII's reign, widow, Katherine Durrell requests she be buried in the churchyard of St Peter and Paul, West Mersea. She has three daughters, Alice and Rose Durrell and probably a married daughter, Jane Southam. She has two sons John and Richard Durrell. She makes numerous bequests, a featherbed, linen, itemised clothes, cattle, a horse, sheep, corn, a cart and harness, a quern (grindstone), cheese, a pig, household effects and a few small amounts of money, to a number of godchildren and other relatives, some are grandchildren and some may be friends. She makes her two sons her executors and the will is witnessed by John Aylward, clergyman of West Mersea and William Payne plus others unnamed.

1.   In the name of god Amen Anno d[omi]ny mli v h[u]ndred xlvj [1546] & in the xxxviiith yere of the raynge of our
2.   ssufferynge [sovereign] lorde kingehary the viijth by the grasse of god kynge of eynglande & of Francess & of
3.   eartheland kynge defender of the Fayytth & in earth Supremhed of the churche of eynglande &
4.   yarlande & wretten the xixdaye of maye I katteryn durrell weddou [widow] beynge hole in mende &
5.   ssyke in body do make & ordyen[n] thys myllast wyll in maner & Forme Foluynge Furst i be quethe
6.   my soule unto all myghtty god & to all the co[m]pany of heven & my body to bebereyd In the churche
7.   yarde of petter & pall in westmersy I[te]m I wyll that my iij dautteres part my lynnen saveynge
8.   my best payer of schettes partt & partt leke I[te]m i wyll that olde John Southham have my brow[n] kene
9.   I[te]m i wyll that yonge John Southham have my garled [spotted/speckled] bulloke all so I wyll that my sone John
10.   durrell schall delyver thes to best [two beasts] at myhellmes [Michaelmas] nextt afftter my dehtt & i wyll that my sone
11.   John durrell do se thes best lett tyll they cu[m]to a laufull ages to the laddes pronett [?] in good lykekyng
12.   as they be whan he do take them & yf thes lades dep[a]rtt beffore they com[me] to the ages of xvj yeres
13.   than I wyll that John durrell\the sonne of John durrell/ have thes best John Jeffere schall
14.   have a rede bullocke w[i]t[h] awhytt Face that have hade to caues deleverd at myhellmes afftter my detthe
15.   unto hys Father or hys motther all so i wyll that John gybe have a red kene deleverd at myhell
16.   mes afftter my detthe unto hys Father or mother all so i wyll that Ane durrell my god dautter schall
17.   have a blake wennell [newly weaned animal] deleverde at myhellmes afftter my detthe allso i wyll that John durrell the sone
18.   of Rycharde schall have to wennells deleverde att myhellmes after my dethe unto hys fatther or hys
19.   mother all so I wyll that Jane Southham my dautter schall have my fetther bede & yf sche dye than i
20.   wyll that olde John Southham have the sayde Fetherbede all so I wyll thatt Jane Southam my god dautter
21.   have my horss payenge to Aells durrell my god dautter xiij s & iiijd allso i wyll that Aells gybe have
22.   my best gurdyll allso i wyll that Rycharde durrell my sone schall have my haffe [heifer?] cartt & all the harnes
23.   payenge of a grotte [groat] to Robarde gybe or to hys wyffe allso wyll that rycharde barn[n]s my god sone schall have
24.   ijs & vjd to be deleverde at myhellmes aftter my dettheunto John wenollde to the chylldes he havett[h?]
25.   allso i wyll that John durrell my sone & roes my doutter have my corne that groue upon my
26.   gronde partyng yt p[a]rt & patt leke be twenethem to allso i wyll that Robarde Jeffere schall have a
27.   schep & a lame [lamb] of the best that hys mother can chausse [choose] deleverde at myhellmes affter my detthe
28.   all so i wyll that olde mother payen have my best whytt pettecott & my rede cape allso i wyll that
29.   John durrell my son[n]e son[n]e schall have a schep & a lame all so wyll that my god chylldren schall have
30.   all my houssholde sstuffe to partt amonge them saveynge my chesse & my hoge the weche be thess
31.   olde John Southham & you[ng?] John Southham & Jane Southham & Aells durrell & John Jeffere & John gybe
32.   & John durrell all so i wyll that John durrell schall have my ladder All so i wyll & ordyen thes
33.   my laufull exssayttors [executors] John durrell my son[n]e & rycharde durrell my son[n]e to see my boddy honnestly
34.   broutt on earthe & to se \my/ wyll p[er]formede all so i wyll that rychard durrell have my maltte quearen
35.   all so wyll that margett Southham have a schep & wyllyam southham a schep also i wyll that
36.   John graye schall have a schep all so i wyll that rycharde my son[n]e schall have the rest of
37.   my schep all so i wyll that roes schall have my rede pettecott all so i wyll that the iiij men
38.   that bare me to churche have for ther labour eche of them a grotte Thes be the wyttnes
39.   John Aylward clarke of west merssy & Wyll [yam- torn] payen & other mo [more]             vij Septembris             ...........xxd

Translation to Modern English
In the name of God, Amen in the year 1546 and in the 38th year of the reign of our
Sovereign Lord, King Harry VIII by the grace of God, King of England, France and of
Ireland, King Defender of the Faith and on earth Supreme Head of the Church of England and
Ireland and written the 19th of May I Katherine Durrell, widow, being of sound mind but
sick in body do make and ordain this, my last Will, in manner and form as follows. First I bequeath
my soul to Almighty God and to all the company of heaven and my body to be buried in the church-
yard of Peter and Paul in West Mersea. Also I will that my three daughters share my linen equally except
for my best pair of sheets. Also I will that John Southam the elder has my brown cow
and John Southam the younger my spotted bullock. I will that my son, John
Durrell, shall deliver these two animals at the next Michaelmas following my death and I will that my son
John Durrell sees these two beasts are kept until these boys come of age and be in as good condition
as when he takes charge of them and if these boys should die before they reach the ages of 16
then I will that John Durrell, the son of John Durrell, have them. John Jeffery is to
have a red bullock with a white face, to be delivered at the next Michaelmas following my death
to his father or mother, also I will that John Gibb has a red cow delivered at the next Michaelmas
following my death to his father or mother. I will that Ann Durrell my goddaughter shall
have a black weanling delivered at the next Michaelmas following my death, also I will that John Durrell the son
of Richard shall have two weanlings delivered at the next Michaelmas following my death to his father or
mother. I will that Jane Southam, my daughter, shall have my feather bed and if she should die then I
will that John Southam the elder have it. I will that Jane Southham, my goddaughter,
has my horse, paying to Alice Durrell my goddaughter, 13s 4d, also I will that Alice Gibb has
my best girdle. Also I will that Richard Durrell, my son, has my heifer[?] cart and all the harness
paying a groat to Robert Gibb or his wife. I will that Richard Barnes, my godson, shall have
2s 6d to be delivered at the next Michaelmas following my death to John Wenold for his children.
I will that John Durrell, my son, and Rose, my daughter, have the corn that grows upon my
land, shared equally between them. I will that Robert Jeffery has a
sheep and a lamb, which his mother can choose, delivered at the next Michaelmas following my death.
I will that old mother Payne has my best white petticoat and my red cape. I will that
John Durrell, my son's son, has a sheep and a lamb. Also that my godchildren have
all my household stuff to share amongst them, except for my cheese and my pig, which are to go to
John Southam the elder, John Southam the younger, Jane Southam, Alice Durrell, John Jeffery, John Gibb
and John Durrell. Also I will that John Durrell has my ladder. I will and ordain
my executors be John and Richard Durrell, my sons, and that they see my body decently
buried and my will performed. I will that Richard Durrell has my malt quern.
Also that Margaret Southham has a sheep and William Southham a sheep. I will that
John Graye shall have a sheep, and that Richard, my son, has the rest of
my sheep. Also I will that Rose has my red petticoat. Also I will that the four men
that carry me to church each have a groat for their labour. The following are witnesses
John Aylward, Clergyman of West Mersea and William Payne and others.

Published19 May 1546
SourceMersea Museum