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1549 Will... in English?

Discussion in 'Wills and probate' started by jorghes, Dec 10, 2018.

  1. jorghes

    jorghes LostCousins Superstar

    That is a lot of children for a bloke who died in his 30s. I dug out the pedigree that I copied - it was created (according to it) from information on Wills, from Somerset House and Register offices. For that particular John Dawborne/Daborne - it doesn't give a birth, only a death - 1558. It does the same for his father John/Johannes - giving only a death, in his case 1549.

    The pedigree is not without errors - it lists Maud as being a daughter of the younger John, rather than the elder and lists her marriages (to John Barlow and Richard Morris) in the wrong order. (Morris 1st and Barlow 2nd, when according to the records, it was Barlow 1st and Morris 2nd.) It also does not list all the children of any of the couples listed. For the elder Johannes it only gives John and "another son" - who had a son called Robert Dawborn (not to be mistaken for John jnr's son Robert Dawbarn) who was a dramatist. - who knows which of the sons in the Will had the other child called Robert, I haven't had any luck locating him in the records that I can access.

    I'm working on getting a workable image of it, since I had to copy it out in two parts. I will share if I can photograph them flat and then line them up properly. (It's a two page pedigree and very dark - apparently my genealogical society has digitised it, so I will have to go back in and see if I can get a high quality scanned version of it - unfortunately it won't be this year, I think they close before I get off work for the year)

    Yes it was a reasonably lucky find, although I wasn't impressed to have to sign up for another site to get it. The same site also had a transcription of John the yngr's will as well, which also will be useful.

    I've noticed in the records that Audrey's name was actually more often spelt "Awdrey"... (and the "Alyn" is actually "Allen" in more typical spellings!)
  2. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Superstar

    Yes. That's why I thought the approximate birth years you'd found and quoted in your post #13 above seemed rather late. And if John junior was born some time before 1520 then his father must have been born some time before 1500.
  3. jorghes

    jorghes LostCousins Superstar

    Yeah, without birth references it can be a bit difficult. I usually put on approximately 20 years at the time of marriage and that at least gives us something to work with. But then at the same time, records suggest that John snr's children were born between 1520 and at least 1535, which would push the realms of possibility with him being older.
  4. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Superstar

    I think I’ve said it elsewhere, but it’s difficult to estimate the age of a man from his date of marriage or when his children were born. It’s often easier with women because their child bearing years were much more limited - men could go on fathering children into their sixties and beyond.

    To some extent you are quite fortunate with this family in that the Guildford registers date back to the 1540s, much earlier than most, and there are some early wills as well. But even so, this far back it can be very hard to get a good sense of when people married or how old they were.
  5. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Superstar

    Until relatively recently spelling was pretty fluid and was dependent on the writer as much as anything else. This is often attributed to illiteracy which inevitably did affect things, but to a large extent how things were spelt just wasn’t seen as that important.

    Today we are generally very particular about how our names are spelt, but in times past it was not uncommon for people to use different spellings when signing their name - even within the same document.
  6. jorghes

    jorghes LostCousins Superstar

    I count my blessings, although it seems that any parish style records prior to that don't seem to have survived, not that I have found on Ancestry or FMP that is. Given the probable age of the pedigree, the cousin who had it created, who was, at the time, the head of the family died in 1944. But there is a fair bit of research around this family - my grandmother's first cousin also created a family book, which includes a descendant list from the elder John Daborne's 4x great grandson - that descendant list even includes me. The pedigree doesn't quite name my great grandmother, but it includes her father and a good portion of her siblings.

    The pedigree actually states the approximate time that my branch of the family settled on the "Dawbarn" spelling - it's not until around the 4th great grandson I mentioned above, a man by the name of Thomas Dawbarn.
  7. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Superstar

    Churches were required to keep registers from 1538 only and before that there was no standard system for keeping records. Registers from 1538 often consisted of loose sheets of paper and most have since been lost. From 1598 records were supposed to be kept in parchment books, and earlier records - but only those from 1558 - copied into these, so more records survive from 1558 than from 1538.

    Also from 1598, parishes had to send copies of their registers annually to the Bishop, though in some dioceses this had already been happening. Although many haven't survived, Bishops' Transcripts can sometimes help fill the gaps left by missing and damaged registers, but only rarely before the 17th century.
    • Thanks! Thanks! x 2
  8. jorghes

    jorghes LostCousins Superstar

    I think I did see something about that somewhere, thanks for clarifying!

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