Author Topic: Wills mentioning cousins.  (Read 575 times)

Offline coombs

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Wills mentioning cousins.
« on: Monday 11 May 20 22:42 BST (UK) »
Several of my ancestors who left wills in the 1500s and 1600s mention "my cozen" (obviously another spelling for cousin).

I wonder why this is, if back then they did go by the true definition of cousin (both children of two siblings) then it is quite helpful, unless the term was used a bit more loosely.

My ancestor Thomas Jolye, clerk of Thundersley, Essex, left a will in 1599, mentioning cousin Henry Wright of Bury in Suffolk. Turns out according to a visitation, that Henry Wright was originally of Skipton, and his daughter wed into the Sandwith family. Henry left a will, probated 1610, mentioning the cousins Jollye family of Thundersley, Essex. Henry also mentions property in Skipton, plus cousins Roger Smith, Anthony Smith, Peter Smith and Sandwith children and grandchildren and a Linter/Lynter family.

This can give a clue to the original of Thoams Jollye, maybe he was from Yorks originally.

I would imagine many other members on here have come across cousins mentioned in wills?



Researching:

LONDON, Coombs, Roberts, Auber, Helsdon, Fradine, Morin, Goodacre
DORSET Coombs, Munday
NORFOLK Helsdon, Riches, Harbord, Budery
KENT Roberts, Goodacre
SUSSEX Walder, Boniface, Dinnage, Standen, Lee, Botten, Wickham, Jupp
SUFFOLK Titshall, Frost, Fairweather, Mayhew, Archer, Eade, Scarfe
DURHAM Stewart, Musgrave, Wilson, Forster
SCOTLAND Stewart in Selkirk
USA Musgrave, Saix
ESSEX Cornwell, Stock, Quilter, Lawrence, Whale, Clift
OXON Edgington, Smith, Inkpen, Snell, Batten, Brain

Offline goldie61

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Re: Wills mentioning cousins.
« Reply #1 on: Monday 11 May 20 22:57 BST (UK) »


I would imagine many other members on here have come across cousins mentioned in wills?

Yes, I have come across this several times, and you are correct in thinking it was a much more loosely used term than we would use today.
As you say though, it can still give you possible leads to follow. Every lead is worth trying to follow up - especially when you get back to the 1600s and beyond!
Good luck.
Lane, Burgess: Cheshire. Finney, Rogers, Gilman:Derbys
Cochran, Nicol, Paton, Bruce:Scotland. Bertolle:London
Bainbridge, Christman, Jeffs: Staffs

Offline coombs

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Re: Wills mentioning cousins.
« Reply #2 on: Tuesday 12 May 20 14:10 BST (UK) »


I would imagine many other members on here have come across cousins mentioned in wills?

Yes, I have come across this several times, and you are correct in thinking it was a much more loosely used term than we would use today.
As you say though, it can still give you possible leads to follow. Every lead is worth trying to follow up - especially when you get back to the 1600s and beyond!
Good luck.

I wonder if the "cousins" were nieces or nephews, or relatives by marriage, or just friends who were seen as cousins, or cousins in the Gospel.

I just found this helpful guide for US wills but it probably applies for all over.

https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/U.S._Probate_Records_Class_Handout#Relationships_in_a_will
Researching:

LONDON, Coombs, Roberts, Auber, Helsdon, Fradine, Morin, Goodacre
DORSET Coombs, Munday
NORFOLK Helsdon, Riches, Harbord, Budery
KENT Roberts, Goodacre
SUSSEX Walder, Boniface, Dinnage, Standen, Lee, Botten, Wickham, Jupp
SUFFOLK Titshall, Frost, Fairweather, Mayhew, Archer, Eade, Scarfe
DURHAM Stewart, Musgrave, Wilson, Forster
SCOTLAND Stewart in Selkirk
USA Musgrave, Saix
ESSEX Cornwell, Stock, Quilter, Lawrence, Whale, Clift
OXON Edgington, Smith, Inkpen, Snell, Batten, Brain


Offline emeltom

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Re: Wills mentioning cousins.
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 13 May 20 11:41 BST (UK) »
Cousin could also be classed as 'Kinsman' eg someone having some sort of link to the family but not necessarily a close one.

Emeltom
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Offline coombs

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Re: Wills mentioning cousins.
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 03 June 20 15:21 BST (UK) »
Cousin could also be classed as 'Kinsman' eg someone having some sort of link to the family but not necessarily a close one.

Emeltom

I am also thinking that as well. Such as nephew or niece or great nephew even, or the husband or wife of a nephew, niece. Also sometime spelt "cosen".
Researching:

LONDON, Coombs, Roberts, Auber, Helsdon, Fradine, Morin, Goodacre
DORSET Coombs, Munday
NORFOLK Helsdon, Riches, Harbord, Budery
KENT Roberts, Goodacre
SUSSEX Walder, Boniface, Dinnage, Standen, Lee, Botten, Wickham, Jupp
SUFFOLK Titshall, Frost, Fairweather, Mayhew, Archer, Eade, Scarfe
DURHAM Stewart, Musgrave, Wilson, Forster
SCOTLAND Stewart in Selkirk
USA Musgrave, Saix
ESSEX Cornwell, Stock, Quilter, Lawrence, Whale, Clift
OXON Edgington, Smith, Inkpen, Snell, Batten, Brain

Offline PrawnCocktail

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Re: Wills mentioning cousins.
« Reply #5 on: Wednesday 03 June 20 16:18 BST (UK) »
I suspect their definition of "cousin" was - "anyone I know I'm related to but I'm not sure how"

 ;D ;D

We had a lot of older relatives we called "Cousin" when I was small. They turned out to be my grandparents cousins, when we started the family tree. Before that, I hadn't got a clue how we were related! I'm still in touch with the granddaughter of one of them, but I had to look it up to tell you she's a third cousin!
Website: http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~towcesterfamilies/genealogy/
Towcester - anything, any time
Cheshire - Lambert, Houghland, Birtwisle
Liverpool - Platt, Cunningham, Ditton
London - Notley, Elsom, Billett
Oxfordshire - Hitchcock, Smith, Leonard, Taunt
Durham - Hepburn, Eltringham
Berwickshire - Guthrie, Crawford
Somerset - Taylor (Bath)
Gloucestershire - Verrinder, Colborn
Dorset - Westlake