The will of Richard Halke (d. 1578)

Richard Halke is, I believe, my 11 x great uncle, brother of my ancestor Sampson. Richard clearly left a widow but no children, and hence his will is useful in naming many relations. It also explains why a youngest son, Sampson, came to inherit Bircholt Manor. It also explains why after the male line descended from Sampson died out with William, his son, it went to the Handfeilds, descended from Richard’s sister, rather to daughters of William.

Line breaks are as in the register copy, not indicated by ‘/’ which are as in the document.


Draft transcription – not checked for typos and other errors – and not yet linked to tree


In the name of god amen The twenteth daye of September

in the yeare of or lord god a thowsand fyve hundred Seaventye

and Eighte And in the twentieth yeare of the Reigne of our

sovereigne layde Quene Elizabeth, I Rycharde Hawke

the yonger of wye in the Countye of Kente yeoman, beinge of

good and p[er]fett remembrance (thankes be to god) doe ordaynne

and make this my last wyll and Testament in manner and forme

followyinge Fyrst I comytt my Sowle in to the hands & mercye

of god, and Doe assuredlye hope, trust, and beleave to be saved

onlye by the merytts Death and passyon of Christ Jesus or

Savyor, my bodye to be buryed in the Church of Wye, nye and

besydes the Tombe or grave of my Father Item I wyll & gyve

towards the buyldynge of the Steple of the church of Wye Tenne

pounds of lawfull money of England To be payd and bestowed bye

my Executrixe, when the sayd Steple shall be in buyldynge

Item I wyll and gyve to the poore people of wye, Brooke

Hynxhyll and Boughton Aluphe fyve pounds, to be Dystrybuted

by my Executrix at my buryall or shortelye after Item I gyve

unto my brother John Hawke, fourtye shillings whereof twenty

shillings I wyll shall be payde to hym ymedyatlye after

my Decease And the other twentye shillings to be payd unto

hym wthin one yeare nexte after my Decease Item I gyvie

to Sara Jenkyn twentye nobells To be payd to her wthin

one yeare nexte after my decease Item I wyll and gyvie to

eache of my godchildren twelve pennce To be payde wthin one

haulfe yeare nexte after my decease yf yt be requyred bye

everyie of them severallye Item I wyll to the wyef of

Stephen Gyles tenne shillings Item I wyll and gyvie to Joane

Johncock my servante twentye nobells of lawfull money of England

To be payd bty my Executrix at the Daye of her marriage

yf she tarrye wth my wyef untyll she be marryed, but if she

Departe from my wyef before marryage Then I wyll to her

onlye fyve markes, To be payde at her departure from

[p.2]

from my wyef Item I gyve unto Amie Rygden my servante Twenty

Shillings To be payde to her at the eande of her covenannte to wch is for

three yeares Item I gyve to Gyles Johncock my servante fyve

markes of lawfull money of England To be payd wthin one yeare

nexte after my Decease Item I gyve to Thomas my s[er]vante

tenne shillings To be payd at the Dyscretyon of my Executrix

Item I gyve to Thomas Brokus my boye [meaning?] tenne shyllyngs /

The Resydue of all my goods and Chattalls not by this my last

wyll and Testament bequethed my debtts and legacyes payde

and dyschardged I wyll and gyve holelye to Jane my Wyef

whome I doe ordayne appoynte and make my sole and onlye

Executrix of this my Testament and last wyll In the p[re]sence of

Rychard Hendlye Henry Haull Wyllyam Prowde Thomas

Moyle Stephen Gyles marke Wyllya Collens Edward Hennan

Thys ys the last wyll and Testament of me the sayde

Rychard Hawke thonger made and declared the twentethe

Daye of September in the yeare of or lord god a thowsand

fyve hundred Seaventye and Eighte And in the twenteth

yeare of the Reigne of or sovereigne layde Quene Elizabeth

Towchinge and concerninge the Disposytyon of all my lands

Tenements and heredytaments wthin the Countye of Kente

Fyrst I wyll and gyve to Jane my Wyef all my mannor of

Byrcholl als Byrcholte wyth all the lands, woodds, Rentes

Reversyons, s[er]vyces, Customes comons, feadyngs, and the

advowson and patronage of the churche of Byrcholte p[er]tay=

= nynge to the same mannor wyth all other thappurtenncs, &

all other my lands sett lyenge and beinge in hte paryshe of

Byrcholte and Braborne in the sayd Countye of Kente To

have and to holde to the sayd Jane for terme of her naturall

lyef. The Remayinder of the sayd mannor of Byrcholl and

all other the lands, woods, Rents, Revertyons, s[er]vyces, customes,

Comons, feadyngs and patronage aforesayd wth all other

thapprtenncs, wyth the lands called Byrcholl medowe, and

the lands wch I boughte of Mr Ellyce called forde meade,

Pelhell, Stone and Whyte acre, Cowe lease, and the peace

of lande called Tyle lodge, To Sampson Hawke my brother

To be had to hym and his h assignes, durynge his naturall

lyef, And after his Decease , the Remaynder of the sayde

mannor of Byrcholl wyth thappurtenncs And the Remaynder

of all other the p[re]mysses before lymyted to Sampson my

Brother, To wyllyam Hawke sonne of the sayd Sampson

and to the heyres males of his bodye lawfully begotten

And for lack of such heyres males of the bodye of the

sayd Wyllyam, The Remaynnder of the sayd mannor of

Byrcholl wth thappurtenncs and all other the demysed p[re]my=

=sses, to the heyres males which shall be of the bodye of the

sayde Sampson, And for lack of such heyres males, The

Remannder of the sayd Mannor and other the demysed

[p.3

– ink was running out, may need to get another copy]

p[re]mysses to Sampson Handfeyld Sonne of my Syster Joane &

to the heyres males of his bodye lawfully begotten, And for

lack of such heyres males of the sayd Sampson Handfeld the

Remaynder of the sayd mannor of Byrcholl wyth thappurtenncs

wyth the Remaynder of all and synguler the Demysed p[re]mysses

wyth thappurtenncs unto wyllyam Jenkyn my brother in lawe

and to his heyres for ever Provyded allwayes and my will

is that yf the sayd wyllyam hawke and Sampson Handfeylde

or anye of their heyres shall at any tyme hereafter, assente

conclude, practyse, or goe abowte by anye publych or

secrete Acte whatsoever to cutt of, extynguyshe or Destroye

anye of their owne estate or ynterest, or anye of the remay=

=nder or interest gyve to anye other by this my p[re]sent wyll

in p[ar]te or in all or to charge or yncumber the same or anye

parte therof by anye acte practyse or meanes whatsoev[er]

contravye to my playne meaninge and yntention That then

and y medy atlye uppon such practyse conclusyon or assente his

or their estate lymyted by this my p[re]sente wyll shall ipso

facto, cease determyne and be newlye? voyde in the lawe

And the nexte in remaynder ymedyatlye to enter in ther

hole manner wyth thappurtenncs wyth all other the premisses

before devysed And the same to holde as though noe

such estate or ynterest had by g?? lying t?? under? the sayd

partye or partyes. provyded also and my wyll is that yf

John Hawke my brother nor anye his assignes doe not at

anye tyme hereafter Dysturbe molest or ynterrupte by entry

Clayme grante or other Acte whatsoever anye of the denyses

or Dones wthin this my p[re]sente wyll in thoccupatyon or in??rance

of anye parte or p[ar]cel of my lands, either in this my wyll

Devysed or other wyse not Devysed by the said ??

then yt shall be lawfull unto the sayd John Hawke in and uppon

the hole manner of Byrcholl or anye thappurtenncs thereof

to enter and Dysoayme? yerelye duryinge his naturall lyef

in to whose hands so ever the sayd manner or anye p[ar]cell thereof

shall happ to come for the some of Eightie pounds of currant

money of England as os in fower pryncypall feasts of the

yeare, by even and equall portyons yerelye to be levyed

The first payment thereof to begyn at that pryncypall feast

wch shall nexte come after my Decease Provyded allwaies

and my meaninge is not to prohybyte the sayd John thoccupacon

or ynyoyenge of any lands or Tenements that shall be devysed

exprasselye by this my wyll unto the sayd John, And also

my Wyll and full meaninge ys That after the Decease of Jane

my Wyef that yt shall be lawfull unto Christofer Hawke my

Brother, or to anye his assignes to De?? in the sayde

Manner of Byrcholte or in anye thappurtenncs therof, for

and Durynge his naturall lyeff for the sume? of Scyxe

pounds thirtene shillings and fower pence by the yeare

at the fower pryncypall feasts of the yeare by even and

[p.4]

equall porcons to be levyed the first payment also thereof to be

at the sayd pryncypall feaste wch shall first happ to come

nexte after my sayd wyves Decease and this, thuse to be levyed

in to whole hands or possessyon soever the sayd mann[or] or any

p[ar]cell thereof shall fortune to be / Provyded also and my wyll

is that yf Jane my wyef shall do anye voluntarye or p[er]vissue?

wast or Distenctyon in the sayd mannor of Byrcholl or anye

other theapprtenncs or any the Demysed p[re]mysses amountynge bye

estymatyon over and above the some of tenne shillings That then

and as often it shall be lawfull unto Sampson Hawke my brother

and nexte in remaynder for lyef, To enter in the same Manner

of Byrcholl, or anye thapprtenncs and Distreygine for the some

of treble the Damagyes made and Don[e] by the sayd waste be

it more or lesse above the foresayd Some, And the same some

so leyved to be to the use of the sayd Sampson and of wyllyam

his sonne nexte p[re]ch afore of the remaynder in Tayle of the sayd

Mannor. Also I wyll and gyve unto Jane my wyef all that

my prynccipall messuage wherein I now dwell scytuate in the

paryshe of wye aforesaid, wth the howsynge to the same adjoy=

=ninge and belonginge and all other my lands, Tenements & heradytaments

wyth their appurtenncs sett lyenge and beinge in the parysshes of

Wye and Godmersham To have and to holde to her for Terme

of her naturall lyef Savynge all wayes and reservynge out of

this gyfte all the p[ar]cells and Tenements hereafter in my Wyll

exp[re]sselye don[e] to the contrary?? The remaynder of the sayd

messuage greate orchard or apple garden, wth the oute

howsynge of the same howse, together wth the remaynder

of all my lands wyth their appurtennces in the parysshes of wye

and Godmersham aforesayd unto wyllyam Jenkyn my brother in

lawe and to his heyres for ever, excepted onlye and res[er]ved

out of this my gyfte unto the sayd Wyllyam Jenkyn and his

heyres, two peaces of lande the first conteyninge two acres

more or lesses lyenge and beinge near the p[ar]sonage Barne

of Boughton Aluphe the seconde p[ar]cell conteyninge two ^ {acres}

wyth thappurtenncs lyenge and beinge in Wye feylde wch peace or

p[ar]cell of lande wyth thapprtenncs I wyll and gyve to wyllyam

Payne of wye and his heyres for ever , after the Decease of

Jane my wyef, uppon condycyon that the sayd Wyllyam his

heyries or assignes paye or cause to be payde, nyne shillings

of lawfull money of England yerelye for ever tothe church

wardens of the paryshe church of Wye for the tyme being

To the use of the poore people of the sayd paryshe and to the

reparatyons and repayringe of the church there at the feast of

St Mychaell tharchangell and Thann[un]ciatyon of or ladye the virgyn

by even portyons to be payde The first payment thereof to

begyn at the feast, of the sayd two feasts wch shall nexte come

after my sayd wyves Decease And for lack of payment thereof

or of anye p[ar]cell thereof at the feaste aforesayde th[a]t shall be

[p.5]

lawfull to and for the Church wardens of the sayd paryshe of Wye

for the tyme beinge or for anye one of them, in and uppon the sayd

two acres from tyme to tyme to enter and Dystrayne untyll ther be

satysfyed of the sayd Rente wth all the acreragyes yf anye shall be

Item my wyll and mynde is, my sayd Brother Wyllyam Jenkyn hys

heyres and assignes, shall yelde and playe to Christofer Hawke

my brother, Twentye markes of lawfull money of England out of

my sayde lands and messuage wth thapprtenncs in Wye & Godmersham

aforesayd before gyven unto the sayd Wyllyam and his heyres to the

sayd Christofer and his assignes Dureinge his naturall lyef at the

fower pryncipall feasts of the yeare by eaven portyons, The fyrst

payment thereof to begyv[en] at that pryncypall feast wch shall nexte come

after the Decease of Jane my Wyef And for not payment thereof, or any

p[ar]cell of the same th[a]t shall be lawfull to and for the sayd Christofer

Hawke, and his assignes, in and uppon the sayd messuage and land

in Wye and Godmersham aforesayd to enter and dystrayne untyll the sayd

Christofer be of the sayd Rente holye satysfyed Item I wyll & gyve

the remaynder of fyve peaces or p[ar]cell of lande lyenge and beinge

in the parysshes of Wye and Brabourne aforesayd, the fyrst

peace whereof is called speare feylde, colman acre, Spearham,

Edmond Harveys, and an other peace called Barryes lande To

be had and holden unto Sampson Handfeld aforesayd and to his

heyres for ever after the decease of Jane my wyef Also mye

wyll and mynde is that after the decease of Jane my wyef (in token

and remembrance of my good wyll) all that my peace of lande called

west lease, conteyninge seaven acres more or lesse lyenge & beinge

in the paryshe of Braborne wth thapprtenncs shall remayne and

be unto Henrye Lylgrand my wyves brother, to hym and his heyres

for ever, allwayes desyringe hym, that yf he shall at amy tyme

sell the same p[ar]cell of lande, that my brother Sampson may buye

the same before anye other gyvynge for yt as an other wyll

gyve / Also my wyll is that the two acres of lande more or lesse

lyenge and beinge at the Parke gate of Stowtynge wthin the parish

of Elmested in the sayd Countye of Kente, shall goe and remayne unto

my cosen Rychard Hawke and his heyres for ever, ymedyatly after

my decease Item my wyll and mynde is that my brother John

Hawke shall have to hym and his heyres for ever ymedyatlye

after my deathe all that my Tenement at Bennets fylde gate

wth thapprtenncs scytuate in Wye aforesayd, now in the Tenure and

occupatyon of Reynold Whetnall Item I wyll and gyve to mye

Syster Joane the messuage wyth the lands ady[j]oyning to the same

wherein Robert Rolf now dwelleth and the two acres of lande

now also in his occupatyon / sett lyenge and beinge in the

paryshe of Braborne aforesayd, To be had and holden unot

the sayd Joane for an duringe her naturall lyef, after the decease

of the sayd Robert Rolfe/ The remaynder in fee of the sayd messuage

wyth thappurtenncs wyth the two acres of lande unto kennards wyef

beinge the daughter of my sayd Syster Joane, To have and to

holde unto the sayd Kennards wyef and her heyres for ever

Item I wyll and gyve unto Henrye Prowde of Cantor burye the

remaynder of the Tenement in Wye aforesayd wherein one

[p.6]

Metam now dwellethe; wth a hopp garden and a lytle close adyoyinge

unto the same Tenement To be had unto the sayd Henrye and

his heyres for ever after the decease of Jane my wyef. Also

I wyll and gyve after the decease of Jane my wyef the remaynder

of my other Tenemente in Wye aforesayd wherein Davye Cooke

now dwelleth wth a hempe lande to the same adyoyinge To be

had and holden unto Wyllyam Prowde of Wye and to his heyres

for ever Item I wyll and gyve to Gyles Johncock my lytle

Tenement in Wye aforesayd scytuate and beinge at Bennettsfylde

gate now in the occupatyon of one Smythsone To be had and

holden unto the sayd Gyles and his heyres for ever ymedyatly

after my decease Item my wyll and mynde is that my farmer

Cheseman shall have the ocupatyon of my sayd manner of Byrcholl

for and duryinge the Terme of Syxe yeares, from St Mychaell

nexte comynge after the date of this my Wyll in manner and

forme as I have before to hym grannted payenge to my sayd

Wyef the yerelye Rente and farme? of thyrtye pounds by the yeare

and a bove wellfedd by me reserved and by hym to be payde

accordinge to or agrement Provyded allwayes that the sayd

Wyllyam Cheseman nor his assignes shall not topp, lopp nor fell

any woods or underwoods uppon the sayd manner, excepte onlye for

the nedefull hedgynge and ynclosynge of the lands there Provyded

also that he shall not eare(?) nor breake upp my medowe lands

nor the peace of grounde called Screven[er]s lease, duringe his

Tenure Also my Wyll and meaninge is that Jane my Wyef

shall and may lawfullye have and take tenne loodes of wood

for her fuwell, and no more, in and uppon the lands and woods of

my mannor of Byrcholl yerelye at seasonable tymes duringe

her lyef by assigment of Wyllyam Jenkyn and Sampson Hawke

or of anye one of them Provyded allwayes and my wyll and

mynde is that yf my brother John Hawke doe alyen or sell the

sayd yerelye Rente of eighte pounds grannted and to hym gyven

oute of my manner of Byrcholl as before or anye p[ar]te of the

same That then the gyfte and payment thereof shall cease

determyne and be voyde Provyded allwayes and my full and

playne meaninge is that yf my cosen Sampson Handfyld his heyrs

or assignes, do or shall at anye tyme hereafter, by anye entre

clayme, grannte, fyne, feoffament or other wyse by anye Acte

what soever, disturbe, molest, or out Jane my wyef durynge her

naturall lyef or anye other denysal that hathe anye yntereste

in the sayd manner of Byrcholl , or in or to anye p[ar]cell thereof

by this my Wyll, of the Inyet? and peaceable occupatyon of

the sayd Mannor of Byrcholl or of anye the p[ar]cells of lande

woodds or any other heredytaments belonginge or p[ar]cell of the

sayd mannor That then the sayd Sampson and his heyres

shall utterlye be secluded and [mark obliterating] of, of and for, all gyftes &

benefytes whatsoever bequethed or gyven unto hym and his

heyres by this my p[re]sent wyll and Testament provyded

also and my wyll is lykewyse that if ^ {any} other p[er]son aforenamed

[p.7]

That shall or maye take anye Benefyte by this my last wyll

accordynge to the Tenor and playne meaninge thereof , do not

holde hym selfe contented wth such Devyse, gyfte and legacyes as

to hym her or them as I have by this my last wyll & Testamente

Devysed and sett Downe, Then he or she that soe shall goe a

bowte [about] to ynterrupte infrynge or alter the same contrarye to

the forme aforesayd Shall lose the benefyte of this my last

Wyll and Testament, And the p[er]son in remaynder assigned in

this my p[re]sent Wyll shall take and have the Benefyte that

he or she wch shall ynfrynge ynterrupte or goe aboute to

alter mighte or shoulde have by vertue hereof. Item I wyll

and gyve to Robert Moyle and Walter Moyle thelder gent my two

acres of lande at Watts besydes the p[ar]sonage of Boughton wthin

the lande of Mris Bennett Moyle To have and holde the sayd two

acres wth their appurtenncs to the sayd Robert and Walter and to

their heyres for ever after the decease of Jane my Wyef Item I

gyve to my syster Margerye and to her heyres for ever my howse

wyth thappurtenns thereto belonginge scytuate and beinge in the

paryshe of Blackmanstone in Romney mershe in the Countye of Kent

Wyttnesses at the publicatyon Declarynge and finishinge of this

my last wyll and testament Towchinge and concerninge my temporall

goods and worldly busynes and I assuredly hope toemp[er]h? [torongh?] Jesus

Christe the begyninge of my Spyrtyall Joye and rest henrye

Hanw? Edward Hunam Wyllyam Prowde, Thomas Moyle

Wyllyam Collyns, Stephen Gyles.

[Probate statement to be transcribed; proved 8 Dec 1578]


The will was proved in the Archdeaconry Court of Canterbury and is viewable on microfilm at the CCA or KHLC.

This is a transcript of the register copy of the will, archives ref: PRC/17/43/203

(more details about source to be added to Richard’s page)

The original will also survives. ref: PRC/16/70 H/4 .


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *