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Rev. John Morley, rector of Lincoln College

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Will and Testament: a quick abstract

[TNA reference: PROB 11/645/244; also available from Ancestry's PCC collection]

Rev. John Morley, rector of Lincoln College Oxon and of the parish of Scotton [south of Scotter] in the County of Lincolnshire.

If JM dies without issue: property to niece Elizabeth Robinson for her life, and then in trust for Elizabeth Robinson's heir by primogeniture. Condition: whichever male inherits must assume the surname Morley. Trustees: Mr Michael Robinson (fellow of Lincoln College, Oxford and Thomas Hutton (attorney in Gainsborough) and their heirs.

JM has a leasehold (for three lives) on part of the parsonage of Bottesford, Lincolnshire. An annuity to the parish vicar, on the condition that he read a specific sermon and never try to claim the parish tithes.

Copyhold in Hiberstow [sic Hibaldstow?]

Money for an advowson at Lincoln College.

Ring to wife's sister Mrs Mary Pettoner.

Sister Mrs Mary Micklethwaite and her daughers Mary Robinson and Jane Robinson.

Brother-in-law William Micklethwaite

Money to poor of Scotton and Bottesford

Money to servants

Books shall not be sold, but rather disposed as instructed in annexed handwritten instructions

Executors strictly advised to bury or burn, within a week after JM's death, all JM's sermon notes also all papers marked "papers to be burned", and if the papers are in a box, the box is to be burned and nobody allowed to look in the box or take anything from it.

JM to be decently and privately buried, in accordance with annexed handwritten instructions.

Executors, and guardian to niece Elizabeth Robinson: JM's wife Anne Morley, and Mr Thomas Hutton and Mr Michael Robinson

Residue to niece Elizabeth Robinson.

Thirty pounds to wife, and further 20 pounds per year if she acts as guardian to Elizabeth Robinson, for duration of wife's life or widowhood

Picture of JM and picture of JM's wife to JM's wife, on the condition that both are willed by JM's wife to Elizabeth Robinson

Another picture of JM [this one?] (and also one of Doctor Adams) to Lincoln College, to be hung in the great parlour of the Rector's lodgings

After death of JM's wife: all medals and silver of Queen Anne to Lincoln College

Fine gold piece of Queen Elizabeth sitting on her throne; birth medal in gold of Prince Charles

Thomas Hutton to look after estate and person accounts of Elizabeth Robinson, audited annually by the other executors. Annuity to Thomas Hutton for this service.

Estate in trust for Elizabeth Robinson until she turns 24. If she marries before 24 without guardians' consent, then estate to go to an existing child of children of Jane Robinson or her older sister Mary.

If Elizabeth Robinson dies without any legal issue then estate next passes to Jane Robinson under similar conditions. Then to Mary Robinson, wife of [blank]

23 September 1730

signed: Dr John Morley


First codicil


regarding JM's wife's right to corn, hay and cattle


Second codicil


Extra money to wife.

Money to Rebecca d/o Robert Kemp of Scotton

Further conditions re: primogenetic inheritance, with remainder to Jane Robinson and the Mary Robinson (wife of Mr Taylor), and then in default (with very specific conditions) to Lincoln College

Third codicil

Mary Robinson (wife of Mr Taylor) surpasses Jane Robinson in priority

Directions for disposal of books and pictures: equally long-winded. JM desires that Lincoln College "would look up in the Archives of the said Colledge all the books under this title 'popish, heretical, fanciful'". Unclaimed books to first person who, inheriting the estate according to the entail who within sixteen years of JM's death has a university education and enters into holy orders

Funeral directions

amongst other things, provisions for 8 widows of the parish to follow the body to church.

Another codicil

Instructions regarding furniture.

Silver plate with arms of the Morleys and [another family, or something Christ-related] for use on Communion table of Scotton church, and no other use.

Five pounds to Joseph Lambe of Lincoln College.

Commentary on will

This is the fussiest and most long-winded will I have ever read!

According to Lincolnshire Pedigrees, John had numerous Morley relatives. Curiously, none are mentioned in the will!

Church memorial

Flickr user jmc4 - Chuch Explorer has photographed the interior of Scotton chapel, including a memorial to John and his wife.


Surname: Morley
Title Start Year End Year Added Updated
par. St. Peter at Arches, Lincoln, Lincolnshire
1658 1702 2015-05-19 2015-05-19
Scotton, Lincolnshire
1711 1731 2013-05-03 2013-05-03