The will of Richard SHERES (d. 1657)

Richard Sheres of Abbotskerswell is not a known Gotham relation, but he did leave a bequest to a Timothy Gotham, one of his workmen.

(line breaks as in the register copy)

The Eleaventh day
of June One Thousand Six hundred
Fiftie and five : 1655 ~~ .. ~~ … ~~

In the name of God Ame
I Richard Sheres of the parish of Abbotts Carswell in the
County of Devon Clothier being sound of minde and
perfect memorie praised be God but subject to nature and of
my life uncertaine Doe make and ordaine this my present last
Will and Testament in manner and forme as followeth
Inprimis I commend my Soule to God my Saviour and
Redemer and my body to the Grave and all my worldly goods
wherewith God hath indowed me I give and bequeath in manner and
forme as followeth Item I give and bequeath to the poor of the parish
of Abbotts Carswell tenn shillings to be distributed amongst them the
day of my buriall Item I give and bequeath to my brother Elliott Sheeres
tenn pounds of lawfull English monie to be paid him halfe a yeare
after my decease Item I give and bequeath unto Margery Moore my
decease Item I give and bequeath unto Ruth Moore Mary Moore
and Susanna Moore my Sisters Children to each of them twenty
shillings a peece to be paid them within three moneths after my ~
decease Item I give and bequeath to Rebecah Sheeres my Aunte all
the houshold goods of mine which she hath in her Custodie Item I give
and bequeath to Robert V(?)oysey my Apprentice five shillings to be
paid him when his apprentice be out Item I give and bequeath unto John
Hitchings Luke Burt Timothie Gotham Jonathan Martin John Sheeres
Marker Ponswell Gillian Gouswell Agnis Gouswell my workemen
and woemen to each of them five shillings a peece All the rest of
my goods and Chattells I give and bequeath unto Phillipp Sheeres
my Brother and to Susanna Sheeres my Sister to inioy [enjoy] it presently
after my decease except the Chattle which I hold by Lease which I
give and bequeath to my Mother Mary Sheeres during the terme
of her life they giveing upp the Bonds that they have against my
brother John Sheere My will is that they said Phillepp and Susanna
Sheeres shall inioy it presently after the decease of my Mother And
doe make ordayne and Constitute the said Phillipp Sheeres my
[p2]
Brother and Susanna my Sister Executor and Executrix
ioyntly together of this my present last Will and Testament to receave
my dues and to pay my debts and to doe further for me as they shall
thinke Convenient utterly revoakeing and dicanulling(?) all former
Wills Legacies and bequeathes whatsoever by me heretofore made
constituted or ordained theise being witnesses Further more my desire
is that my Father Phillipp Sheeres shall be Overseer of this my
Will to see it performed The signe of Richard Sheeres Sealed
signed and delivered in the presence of Gedfry Bulley The signe of
Phillipp Sheere thelder ~~ … ~~ … ~~ … ~~ … ~~

This Will was proved att London
The Eighteenth day of December In the yeare of our Lord God
One Thousand Six hundred Fiftie and Seaven before the Judges for
probate of Wills and granting Administrations lawfully authorized
by the oath of Phillipp Sheeres and Susanna Sheeres the brother
and Sister and ioynt Executors named in the above written Will To
whome Administration of all and singular the goods Chattells and
debts of the said deceased was granted and Committed they being first
legallie sworne by vertue of a Commission truly and faythfullie to
Administer the same. ~~ … ~~ … ~~ … ~~ … ~~ … ~~

Richard’s will was proved during the interregnum when there were no Bishops or Archdeacons, and all wills had to be proved centrally in London. There was no Prerogative Court of Canterbury (PCC) either, as that was the Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury, but the wills proved in London at that time are deposited with the PCC wills. It is fortunate for us that Richard’s will was proved at this time as had it not been during the interregnum it may well have been proved in Devon, and been lost along with most Devon wills in the bombing of Exeter in 1942.

TNA ref: PROB 11/271/448 (more details on beneficiary Timothy Gotham’s page)


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