The will of Mary (Marie) Charrosin (1718 – 1793)

Mary Charrosin is a 7x great aunt of mine.

About the will

Unlike the will I believe to be of her brother John who also died unmarried, Mary mentions quite a few relatives including the married surnames of several sisters which has helped me research them.

Was Mary an early feminist? One of at least 15 children born to David Charrosin and his wife Marthe, five are known to have been alive when Mary worte her will. But only her 3 sisters, not her 2 living brothers, are left bequests. Two nieces are also remembered, both daughters of sisters. Whilst it is clear that quite a few nephews and nieces pre-deceased Mary, these were not her only nieces still living – my own ancestor, another Mary Charrosin, being one.

Since niece Mary and her husband were shown as paupers at the time of the baptisms of children in 1788 and 1790 no doubt a bequest, even a small one, from Mary’s aunt would have been useful. But perhaps Mary didn’t get on with her brothers and was not close enough to their children to wish to remember them. It would seem unlikely, though, that all of her sisters’ daughters had died, so maybe the bequests to nieces were to two who were favourites or she though particularly in need of some help. Perhaps she favoured them because they were unmarried, possibly living similar lives to Mary’s own as a servant.

The bequest to her former employer tells us something about Mary’s life that we wouldn’t otherwise know, and suggests that she may have been a companion as well as servant to her employer.

Mary’s will was proved in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury. My understanding is that this suggests that Mary had property in more than one diocese. With the Charrosin family having moved from London in the early part of the eighteenth century maybe a relation remaining in London had left Mary a bequest.


The transcription

I have tried to keep the original spelling, punctuation and capitals (though often not sure about the latter) but I have added paragraph breaks to make it more easily read.

In the Name of God Amen

I Mary Charrossin of the Hospital of Saint John the Baptist near the City of Canterbury Spinster being of sound mind memory and understanding do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament in manner following

First I commend my Soul to God and my Body to the Earth to be decently buried at the discretion of my Executors hereinafter named and as to my Worldly Estate I dispose thereof as followeth that is to say

I give and bequeath all my wearing apparel both linen and woollen unto my two sisters Sarah Twyman wife of Henry Twyman Ann Welby wife of Daniel Welby and my niece Sarah Stone spinster equally between them share and share alike

I give and bequeath unto my niece Rebecca the daughter of my late sister Rebecca Allwright deceased the sum of one Guinea to be laid out and [expeded?] for her use by my Executors herein after named as they think most for her advantage

I give and bequeath unto Mrs Jane Pilcher Widow with whom I formerly lived a servant one pair of best kid Gloves in Remembrance of me

and as for all the Rest and Residue of my Goods Chattels Monies Securities for Money Monies in the public stocks or funds of this kingdom plate [Linen?] China and personal Estate and Effects whatsoever of ?? ?? or kind soever (for and after payment of my debts and funeral Expences) unto my sister Susannah Gardner widow and my said sisters Sarah Twyman and Ann Welby equally to be divided between them share and share alike and to their ????? Executors Admon and Assigns

And I do appoint my Brother in Law the said Daniel Welby and Ann his wife joint Executors of this my Will Revoking all others by me made and do declare this only to be my last Will and Testament

In Witness whereof I the said Mary Charossin the Testatrix have hereunto set my hand ?? this twenty ninth day of November in the yeare of our Lord one Thousand seven hundred and ninety one   Mary Charrossin + her mark  signed sealed published and declared by the Testatrix Mary Charossin as and for her last will and Testament in the presence of us who have subscribed our names as witnesses hereto ?????


As can be seen, quite a bit of work needed in deciphering the following – but I didn’t spend much time on the transcription, so may not be too difficult.

This Will was proved at London the sixteenth day of April in the Year of our Lord one Thousand seven hundred and ninety three before the worshipful [William Batt??] Doctor of Law surrogate of the right honorable Sir William Wip??? Knight Doctor of Laws Master keeper or Commisary of the prerogative Court of Canterbury lawfully constituted by the oath of Daniel Wellby otherwise Welby one of the Executors named in the said will to share Administration was granted of all and singular the Goods Chattels and Credits of the Deceased having been first sworn duly to administer power …….

Of her …

Other Executor [named ?] in the said Will  …

Shall apply for ???


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