Calendar of State Papers James I is in Calendar of State Papers.
Calendar of State Papers James I Addenda
04 Jun 1614. 61. Will of Sir Nathaniel Bacon (68), knt., of Stiffkey, co. Norfolk, noted as published, but not read, 4 June 1614, in presence of Charles Le Gros and seven others named. I desire to be buried in Stiffkey church, where my former wife was interred, and where I wish my present wife to be, under or near the tomb I have caused to be provided, which the workmen have now in hand. Being indebted to my son-in-law, Owen Smyth, in regard of my receipts of the profits of his lands during his minority, if I should die without directing how such debt should be answered, I might be subject to just rebuke ; so, that my wife and daughters may be the better assured, I devise my lands as follows : —.
I give to my executors all my lands in Stiff key, Langham, Morston, and other towns adjoining, from my death until the Michaelmas twelve month after, they paying to my daughter Lady Ann Townshend (41), 350l. a year, with remainder to her and her heirs, provided that Roger Townshead (18), my grandchild, be not put from her. For default of such issue, the remainder to my second daughter Baroness Knyvet (39) and her heirs ; remainder to my third daughter Lady Winifred Gawdy (36) and her heirs ; remainder to my own heirs. The 100 marks a year paid by me to my daughter Townshend (41) is to be continued with the 350l. a year, and time is to be allowed to my executors to dispose of the cattle and other stock for payment thereof. My daughter Knyvet (39) and my daughter Gawdy (36), with her husband (37), are to perfect the entail of the aforesaid manors and lands to my daughter Townshend (41), by giving up such right as is by law cast upon them. I give to my wife (44) for life the manor of Hemesby, with the impropriations, &c. ; remainder to my heirs male, and for default thereof, to my daughter Lady Elizabeth Knyvet (39) and her heirs, with further remainders in a conveyance already made by me.
I give my manor of Stanford, with my lease of the impropriation, to my daughters Ladies Knyvet (39) and Winifred Gawdy (36), for their better maintenance during the life of my wife (44), — they yielding 201. a year of the profits of the manor to Nathaniel Knyvet, my grandchild ; 101. a year to Martin Man, and 5l. a year to Wm. Sanders for life ; — and after my wife's death, when Hemesby manor comes to my daughter Knyvet (39), then to my daughter Lady Gawdy (36) and Sir Robt. Gawdy (37), and her heirs, with the remainders mentioned in the conveyance aforesaid. The aforesaid annuities, with 5l. more which I purpose to give to other servants, to be paid by my said two daughters out of Stanford manor, during the life of my wife ; and after her death, one half by my daughter Knyvet, out of Hemesby manor. I give my manor of Eccles, with all the lands occupied therewith, to my wife for life, in augmentation of her jointure ; remainder to my own heirs.
To my grandchild Roger Townshend (18) and his heirs, my house in Norwich, which I am to have after my sister Mansfield's death, with the copyhold woods, meadow, &c.
To my wife for life the manor of Irmingland, with reversion to my daughter Knyvet for life, remainder to my grandson Thomas Knyvet, on condition that my said daughter pays, within two years after my wife's death, 2,000^. to my daughters Townshend and Gawdy ; if not paid, the reversion of the said manor to go to my heirs. I know my house and lands in Irmingland, &c. are assured to my wife if she survives me, yet I direct as I have done, hoping that she will be either moved or compelled to make good my will, as it was never intended that the house and land should go otherwise than to my wife, and after her death to her eldest son, for satisfying such money as I was to pay him, for the profits of his lands received by me, and I trusted my wife with that and more, to give her eldest son content if he had outlived me.
Besides, I have given my wife 400l. a year more than I assured her before marriage, to content her and not to deprive me in disposing of the inheritance. I have also conveyed to her son Owen Smyth, 100 naarks a yeajc in Eccles, which is to come to him if I do not otherwise dispose of it, although he has unkindly provoked me, and they wronged him who advised him thereto, but I hope that God may turn the heart of my wife not to wrong me. I desire the husbands of my daughters to make good these assurances ; if they are contentious, a quarrel may be picked, but I hope that God will bless them with better spirits, and that they will be contented seeing the portion they have had in my lifetime, and will receive by my death is great to every one of them, though not in a like greatness ; God will bless them best who most desire peace.
The lease of my manor of Mithwould is to be sold for payment of debts. I give to Mr. Percival, minister of Stiffkey 5l., with the right of enjoying his pasture close at 20s. a year, so long as he resides in Stiff key. To the poor of StifFkey 10l., to be distributed by my executors at their discretion. To my daughter. Lady Townshend, the piece of plate called the heirloom, to go with Stiffkey House, according to my father's gift, if I have no son. To my godson Nathaniel Bacon (20), son of my brother Edward (65), 10l. To my wife the coach which my son Owen Smyth gave her, and two of my best coach horses at her choice ; also the bedstead, with the furniture of tester, curtains, covering and chair, in my best chamber, but not the hangings ; and two pillow beers given to me and hereby my mother Hopton.
I appoint my three daughters executors, and my brother Edward (65) supervisor, or failing him, Mr. Jermy and Gwyn, lawyers. My wife's great pearl chain, which cost me 200l., is to be sold for payment of debts, as also the border of diamonds and rubies ; if she will give for the pearl and border what they cost me, she is to have them. I give the jewel of diamonds which was my first wife's to my present one for life, with remainder to my daughter Townshend. I give to all my three daughters the jewel of unicorn's horn, according to their mother's direction, that each one may challenge the use thereof when needs require, and my wife may have the use thereof when she needs, but my daughter Townshend is to have the custody thereof for life.
To my supervisor a ring, valued at 20 marks, upon which the following is to be engraved : " Vindicta Domino." To Mr. Gwyn and Mr. Jermy 40s. each. To John Norsforth, for diligent service in my sickness, 10s. a year for life, payable out of Stanford manor during my wife's life, and afterwards out of Stanford and Hemesby ; a like annuity to old John Harrison. To my son-in-law. Sir Robert Gawdy, one of my best geldings. To Barnaby Banyard, 20s. a year, payable out of Stanford and Henesby. I desire that my brother and supervisor see my evidences sorted and distributed between my wife and daughters, as appertains ; and where two have interest, the originals to remain with tliat person to whom the present interest and possession is due. I advise my executors to retain the services of Martin Man for a time, as he knows my debts and estates.
To the poor of Langham 40s. ; the poor of Morston 40s. ; and to the poor of Wells, Blakeney, Wiveton, Warham, and Cley, 20s. ; to be distributed by my executors within a year.
I leave my funeral solemnities to the discretion of my executors, &c., but the charge is to be small, and my debts considered.
To Ann Townshend, Elizabeth Knyvet and Dorothy Gawdy a piece of gilt plate each, value 10l., with the following sentence engraved upon it, " Vindicta Domino," as a gift in remembrance of their grandfather. The household to be retained together for one month after my decease, at the charge of my executors. To each of my servants who have served two years, half a year's wages. To my wife and three daughters all my English printed and written books ; the French law books to my grandson Roger Townshend, and the Latin to my grandson Hen. Gawdy ; but no books to be given to my grandson Thos. Knyvet, as he is like to be stored otherwise.
To Jane Morton a piece of gilt plate, value 5l., with the inscription before mentioned, and rings, value 20s. a piece, with the same inscription, to my eldest brother and his wife ; my brother Edw. Bacon and his wife; my sisters Periam and Mansell; my brother Sir Francis Bacon ; my mother and brother Hopton ; Sir Hen. Gawdy; my nephew Sir Edmund Bacon, and his brother Nathaniel ; my brother Sir Thos. Knyvet and his wife ; Sir Christopher Heydon ; my brother Mansell (41) ; Mr. Bedingfield of Wighton ; Mr. Fotherby ; Capt. Russell ; my cousin Thomas Gurney ; Mr. Peapes ; Mr. Clarke of Lynn ; my son Owen Smyth and Lady Sydney; Sir Charles Cornwallis, and my nephew Grey. My debts to my son Owen Smyth being such, my children, and others, must hold me excused, though I give no greater legacies. 1 give also to my wife all the goods which were hers before I married her, and also all her jewels, except those directed to be sold ; the remainder of my effects and stock to be sold, and the proceeds applied in liquidating my debts and legacies ; the balance, if any, between my executors.