Essex wills – D

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Some wills have been transcribed in full, whereas others are a paraphrased transcription. If they are paraphrased, they contain the names of all those mentioned in the will, with the gist of what they were (or were not!) bequeathed, but to find the full details, such as the names of property, requests as to how they were to be buried etc., please contact the relevant archive.

Daniell, Alice, widow of Messing, 1575

  • son John Daniell
  • son Danyell Syda [son-in-law]
  • daughter Sheltun
  • grandson William Syda, my daughter’s son
  • Francis Sheltun: 6 spoons bought from John Cooke
  • The rest of my daughter Sheltun’s children
  • granddaughter Ansills Heygate, my daughter’s daughter
  • my three daughters: Heygate, Sheltun, and Syda
  • maids: Ursula Samford, Susan Daniell
  • John Heyward, Richard Simson, Dave Gernine?, Katherine Pmr [Parmenter?]

Executor: my sister Dennam [but appears to have been probated by the testator’s son]

Written 1 June 1575, probate 28 Nov 1575


Transcriber’s notes: widow of Edmund Danyell or Daniell of Messing. His 1571 will is below. “Syda” is probably the surname “Sidey”.

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Danyell, Edmund of Messing, 1571

  • son John U21
  • wife Alice
  • son-in-law Reynold Heigate
  • cousin Robert Hall, gent.
  • “my other children”
  • cousin John Tamworthe
  • nephew Thomas Terye
  • wife’s sister Jane Denham
  • late brother’s house at Chapel called Brome House
  • servant Katherine Paine
  • daughter Elizabeth
  • daughter Grace Shelton
  • daughter Mary Heigate
  • uncle George Danyell
  • godchildren: Edmund Teye, Rogers, Edmund Bowyer, Constance Bushe, John Stoverd, Daniel Hiegate, Daniel Shelton

Executors: wife Alice, Reynold Hiegate, Robert Hall.

Supervisor: cousin John Tamworthe

Written 20 Dec 1568, probate 19 May 1571

Transcriber’s notes: son of John Danyell of Messing, whose 1556 will is transcribed below.


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Danyell, John of Felsted, 1519

  • to be buried in the Trinity chapel on the south side of Felsted church
  • money for tithes
  • money for a priest to sing in Trinity chapel for 10 years, if he’s buried there, for the souls of “the full noble and valient knight my late singular good lord and master John de Vere, late Earl of Oxford,” testator’s soul, parents’ souls, his wife’s parents’ souls, his children’s souls, and all Christian souls
  • money to poor of Felsted
  • he has the manors of Felsted and Grandcourt by lease from the Abbess of Sion convent for a certain number of years.
  • The manors to his cousin John Danyell of Messing, and his nephews/cousins Dr Knightley, and William Knightley his brother, paying the profits to testator’s wife Margery [note that the way he refers to the Knightley brothers varies – in some parts of the will they’re his nephews, in others his cousins]. [see the will of his wife Margery below]
  • Daughter Mary to receive the profits after Margery’s death
  • If both Margery and daughter Mary die before the end of the lease, the profits for fund poor priests and scholars at the universities, and other charitable causes.
  • Cousin Katherine Danyell: 5 marks towards her marriage, if she is in the testator’s service at the time of his death
  • Residue to wife. “And if I had much more than I have now at my said departure, I could and would be right well content that she should have the same for so much as she has taken great pains and labours in and about getting thereof. And trust verily for the great love that has been continually between us that she therefore will have my soul the rather in her special remembrance as may stand in her power

Executors: cousin John Danyell of Messing, nephews Dr Knightley and William Knightley his brother.

Written 1 May 1518, probate 22 Jan 1518/9

Probated by John Danyell and Margery, the testator’s widow. Matthew Knightley [aka Dr Knightley] took on probate on 14 June 1525 (after Margery’s death).


Transcriber’s notes: John Daniell was a servant of the Earl of Oxford, and was also one of his executors, hence his request that the priest pray for the earl’s soul.

The way he refers to the Knightleys varies in the will – sometimes cousins, sometimes nephews – but we know from Matthew Knightley’s letter (he is “Dr Knightley” in the will), that the testator was his uncle, a son of Matthew’s maternal grandfather Thomas Daniell (he is Thomas Daniell in the letter, but referred to generally as Sir Thomas Daniell). This means that John Daniell of Messing was a nephew of the testator’s too, as he was a grandson of Sir Thomas Daniell. At this time, terms such as “cousin” could be wide-ranging in meaning, sometimes strictly referring to a first cousin, others to first cousin one removed, second cousins, or as we see here, a nephew. The word is sometimes used in the place of kinsman or kinswoman. Even the word “nephew” doesn’t always mean what we think of it in modern times – I have seen it used to refer to grandsons.

John Daniell’s daughter Mary married John Newport of Furneux Pelham. The Newport’s only child was Grace, who, aged only eight, married Henry Parker.

A memorial that used to be at Furneux Pelham church (From: Antient funeral monuments, of Great-Britain, Ireland, and the islands adjacent by Weever, John, 1576-1632; Tooke, William, 1744-1820) asked for prayers for the souls of John Danyell of Felsted and his wife Margery. While it doesn’t give a date of death for Margery, John’s is given as 7 Oct 1519. This can’t be correct, because John’s will was probated nine months earlier. He likely died in Oct 1518 instead.

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Danyell, John of Messing, 1556

  • Money to poor of Messing, Infolde [Inworth?], Kelvedon, Feering, Coggeshall, Easthorpe, Marks Tey, Copford, etc.
  • My godchildren [unnamed]
  • my servants [unnamed]
  • Margaret [surname unclear – Elwood? Gli?]
  • my late wife had money in keeping for Margaret
  • Richard Tyler, John Hayward, Robert Damyon
  • wife of late servant Northor
  • Rysby and his wife
  • Agnes Bowyer, Kateryn Borlye
  • Edmund Underwood
  • Cowell of Coggeshall
  • son John: a standing cup “which I had of the gift of my lady the Countess of Oxford”
  • brother George

Executor: son Edmund Danyell

Witnesses: Edward Popley?, Edward Danyell clerk, Russell Prentyse and John Prentyse, servants

Written 30 June 1556, probate 21 Nov 1556

Transcriber’s notes: John Danyell, or Daniell, was the second (but eldest surviving) son of Edmund Daniell of Stoke by Nayland and his wife Grace Baynard. Edmund was the son of Sir Thomas Daniell and Margaret Howard, eldest sister of Sir John Howard, who later became the 1st Duke of Norfolk. John Daniell inherited his property in Messing from his mother’s father, Sir Richard Banyard of Messing.

John’s brother Thomas Daniell was of Acton in Suffolk. Thomas died between July 1565 and February 1565/6.


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Danyel, John of Chappel, 1561

  • wife Elizabeth: house called Broume House for life, and all other property including household goods
  • nephew John, son and heir of my brother Edmund: to have all the properties after wife’s death

Executor: wife Elizabeth

Witnesses: Walter Richardson, William Estewe, Laurens Clayton “and others”

Written 19 Mar 1561/2, probate 1 July 1561 [the date the will was written is given as 19 March 1561, which would be 1561/2, and the date of probate 1561. Since it’s impossible to probate a will before it’s been written, the date the will was written is likely to have been 19 March 1560/1 instead. The registered copy is the only version to exist, so the error with the date may have crept in when it was copied from the now-lost original.]


Transcriber’s notes: son of John Daniell of Messing (1556 will above), and brother of Edmund Daniell of Messing (1568 will above). Evidently the testator and his wife didn’t have any children, as his ultimate heir was his nephew. His brother Edmund mentions the testator’s house in Chapel in his 1568 will. As John, the nephew, was under 21, the house was Edmund’s until John came of age.

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Danyell, Margery of Felsted, 1523

  • late the wife of John Danyell of Felsted esqr. [see his will above]
  • to be buried in the chapel of the Holy Trinity at Felsted church
  • money for tithes to the churches of Felsted and Furneux Pelham
  • daughter Mary: 40 marks and household goods “now remaining in the custody of my son-in-law John Newport her husband, except jewels, plate, and the debt he owes.”
  • granddaughter Grace Newport, daughter of John and Mary: £100 when 21. If she dies under 21, or if she’s made John’s heir, her mother to have £50 of the money, and the rest “to be disposed for the wealth of my soul.”
  • money for repairs and adornments at the churches of: Furneux Pelham, Herts; Brewood, Staffs; Felsted, Essex (and vestment, challis etc for the Holy Trinity chapel); Stebbing, Essex; Northend chapel in the parish of Great Waltham, Essex; Navenby, Lincs.
  • Money to priories at Dunmow and Lyes
  • money for priest to pray at Felsted and Furneux Pelham
  • money to poor of Felsted
  • black cloth for house servants
  • Servant Richard Gybon: 40sh
  • Robert Joly: £4 and a horse and harness
  • Sir John Morton: 40sh [“Sir” could mean a priest, not just someone who’s been knighted]
  • Katherine Danyell: 40sh
  • Katherine Albert and Eleanor Albert: one seam of wheat, one seam of malt
  • John Steven 6sh 8d, and half a seam of wheat
  • all godchildren: half a seam of malt
  • If daughter Mary predeceases testator, residue to pay for poor scholars

Executors: her cousins John Danyell of Messing, Master Edward Fowke, clerk

Supervisor: son-in-law John Newport

Witnesses: Sir John Morton, clerk; Robert Joly, “and other”.

Written 20 July 1520, probate 24 April 1523


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Day, William of Langham, farmer, 1803

  • To kinsman Daniel Carver and his wife Sarah of Mile End (yeoman and
    William’s bailiff) all freehold and copyhold.
  • £100 each to John, Daniel and Abraham Carver, sons of Daniel and Sarah
    Carver when 21.
  • £100 to great-niece Martha Day (daughter of William’s nephew William
    Day and his wife Martha)
  • To Elizabeth Carver, William’s housekeeper: 4 shillings a week, a
    cauldron of coal each year, and the use of £25-worth of household
    goods for her natural life.
  • Remainder of household goods to Daniel and Sarah Carver.

Executors Daniel and Elizabeth Carver.

Witnesses William Francis, Sarah Rootsey, Saml. Willey

Written 22 May 1802. Died at Langham 8 Aug 1803. Proved 20 August 1803

ERO ref D/ABW 116/1/77

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Derehawghe [Derehaugh], Edward esq, of Markshall, 1598

  • Son William, executor
  • Wife Margaret
  • Son William to pay Margaret a £40 annuity “according to indentures betwixt me and John Holmesteede, wherein I and William stand bound for saving Holmesteede of the payment.”
  • Master Lightfoote, wife’s brother
  • Property in Markshall and Feering in Essex, and Gedgrave in Suffolk

Written 20 May 1598, probate 29 May 1598


Witnesses: Robert Plaile, John Grene

Transcriber’s notes: Edward Derehaugh esq was buried at Markshall on 25 May 1598, and his widow Margaret on 21 Feb 1603/4. His son Edward was buried there on 2 Feb 1595/6. His son William was buried in Orford in 1612, and he left a will. His memorial brass says he was the son of Edward Derehaugh of Markshall, and that he was 52 when he died – his baptism was at Great Bromley on 28 Jun 1561, William son of Mr Edward Deero, gent. William and Edward are both mentioned in the will of John Clippesby of Oby in Norfolk – John described William as his nephew, and Edward as his brother-in-law. John left William a silver pot “with the Derowes armes thereon.”

It is possible that Margaret wasn’t William’s mother and that Edward had been married before, to a Clippesby. Or that Margaret’s brother Lightfoote was her half-brother. John Clippesby’s mother Lettice married William Cardinall after the death in 1540 or 1541 of her first husband William Clippesby. One of William’s daughters, Faith, was Faith Derehaugh when she married Henry Appleton of South Benfleet in 1561 at Great Bromley. It isn’t clear from the visitations if Faith was Lettice’s daughter, or the daughter of William’s first wife, Joan Gurdon. If she was Lettice’s daughter, it would mean that John Clippesby’s half-sister had married a Derehaugh, but clearly she couldn’t have been Edward’s widow as he was still alive – she was presumably the widow of Edward’s brother or cousin, given that the name is so rare, and has since died out. Antiquary Richard Sympson recorded a lost brass at Great Bromley of William Derrhaughe aged 22 in 1562, showing a citizen with his wife and infant. Faith was presumably William’s widow when she married Henry Appleton. See Chancery document TNA C 3/55/6, Robert Derehawgh (plaintiff) and Henry Appleton, Faith Appleton his wife and another (defendants) regarding land near Orford in Suffolk.

The 1558 Essex Visitation for Essex shows Julian, daughter of William and Lettice Cardinall as the wife of Robert Deranger, son of Thomas – Deranger is possibly Derehaugh. But there is no trace of Julian in subsequent Essex visitations, and I wonder if Julian and Faith were in fact the same person. But I think the answer is that Julian was in fact married to Edward Derehaugh, not Robert, and that she was the mother of William Derehaugh. This would explain why William was baptised at Great Bromley, as it was where the Cardinalls lived. As Lettice’s daughter, Julian was John Clippesby’s half-sister, therefore creating the link which meant that William was John’s nephew and Edward was his brother-in-law. But why did John Clippesby own a silver cup with the arms of his brother-in-law on it?

Regarding Margaret, there is Chancery document TNA C 3/55/89, Edward Derehawghe (plaintiff) and John Lyghtfoote (defendant) concerns “marriage contract Marks Hall, Essex.” It is dated between 1558 and 1579, and must concern Edward’s marriage to Margaret. See the will of William Lightfoote, 1566/7, mentioning his brother John, and his sister “Colle” – Margaret’s first husband was a Cole.


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Dearhaugh, Margaret, widow of Markshall, 1604

  • Son Robert Cole, exec. To have all her property at Markshall in order to pay off her debts.
  • Son Andrew Clerke £5
  • Grandson Anthony Clarke, eldest son of son Andrew: £5
  • Grandson William Clarke, second son of son Andrew: £5. William was left land and tenements in the will of his uncle William Clarke. If he bargains or sells them, his legacy of £5 is void.
  • Grandson William Playle, second son of daughter Anne Playle: £5 if his cousin William Clarke sells his lands inherited from his uncle (above).
  • Grandson George Clarke, youngest son of son Andrew £5
  • Daughter Jane Gilberd: jewellery
  • Grandson Ambrose Gilberd, eldest son of daughter Jane £5 when 21
  • Grandson William Gilberd, second son of daughter Jane £5 when 21
  • Granddaughter Jane Gilbert, daughter of daughter Jane £10 when 21
  • Daughter Anne Plaile £5, to be paid in 20 shilling installments annually
  • Grandson John Clarke, eldest son of son Clement Clarke: some plate
  • Son-in-law William Cole: some jewellery
  • Money to servants

Witnesses: John Grene, William Stephens senior

Written 19 Sep 1601, probate 13 Feb 1603/4


Transcriber’s notes: Margaret was buried at Markshall on 21 Feb 1603/4. She was the widow of Edward Derehaugh. The William Clarke she mentions who left a will was her son, William Clarke of Gray’s Inn, whose PCC will was proved on 13 Oct 1589. Note that William mentions his sister Amy Playle, not Anne Playle. Edward’s brother Robert Derehaugh of Gray’s Inn was one of the executors.

Margaret is mentioned in her brother William Lightfoote’s 1566/7 will as his sister Colle. The will was written on 13 Oct 1566, so her marriage to Edward Derehaugh was presumably after that date. Given that her son William mentioned Derehaugh siblings in his will, written in 1588, Edward and Margaret must have married between 1566-1588.

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Dyer, John, yeoman of Frating, 1573

  • To be buried in the church at Frating
  • Four children: John, George, Elizabeth and Anne £10 each when 21
  • The child my wife is now with: £10 when 21
  • Executor: wife Anne, rest and residue
  • Witnesses: George Sefoulde, William Faier, [unnamed] wife of Neverde
  • “Which he afterwards recited to George Knightley, gentleman”

Written May 1573, probate 2 June 1573


Transcriber’s notes: see the notes accompanying the will of his sister-in-law, Lettice Hyll, who died in his house a month before him. John’s wife, Anne, was the daughter of Simon Hill and Elizabeth Knightley. George Knightley was Elizabeth’s brother (see his will, although he doesn’t mention any of the Hills), therefore the testator’s wife’s uncle. John and Anne also had a daughter called Lettice, but she isn’t mentioned in the will. She may have died a few days after her father, and her sister Anne before her, so it seems odd that Anne is in the will, but not Lettice. Then again, the burial register only gives their forenames and surnames, without giving any relationships, so it’s not entirely clear who was buried by those names. It could be, however, that someone else in either his family or his wife’s family had promised money to Lettice, so he didn’t feel it was necessary to leave her a legacy.

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