Abstract of the will of Richard Polhill of Chelsfield (occupation not given) dated 18 August 1590.
I revoke all previous wills whereon I made Jasper Schols my Executor.
My body to Christian burial, and I give 5s. to those who take pains about me to bring my body to the earth.
I leave to be bestowed in bread and drink and such like on the day of my burial among those which are then and there present 13s.4d.
To all the servants in Mr. Smith’s house 12d. each.
I give unto Chelsfield and Farnborough to either of them 10s. to the poor or upon the reparations of the church at Mr. Smith his discretion whom I would desire to preach at the distribution thereof.
To Egerton, Sutton Valence and Leeds 20s. each to be bestowed in this manner, that is unto a preacher to make a sermon at every parish 6s.8d. and unto the poor of every parish 13s.4d.
To Hesther Deeds my Goddaughter 20s. To Anne Smith my Goddaughter 10s. To my Goddaughter Cowchman 5s. To Susan Chasinghurst my Goddaughter 5s.
To Mr. Smith all my books of divinity except my Bible, which I give to Elizabeth Acton my mother.
To George and Francis Smith all my books of humanity except my Cooper’s Dictionary which I give to my brother Richard Acton.
I give to Turner of Malling [sic] my old gown, my frise coat and my old half [sic] and 12d.
To Elizabeth Acton my mother my half gown. To my sister Bennet Deeds wife of Robert Deeds 10s. To my brother Edward Acton 10s.
To the said Edward I forgive all the money he owes me by virtue of an obligation written with his own hand or any otherwise so that none after my death shall molest or trouble him for anything whereof he is now indebted to me.
All residue of goods and money to my brethren James, Richard and John [Acton] to be divided equally between them.
I appoint my brother Richard Acton Executor, who is to make a just and true account to my brothers James and John Acton.
All my brethren, Edward, James and John, as well as my Executor, shall bear their part of the cost of proving the will etc.
As touching my tenements and lands:
I leave to Bennet Deeds my sister, wife of Robert Deeds, my tenement and all my lands called Bests in Egerton, to her and the heirs male of her body for ever, with remainder for lack of such heirs to my three brothers James, Richard and John and their heirs for ever, they paying to every one of my sister’s daughters now living £10.
Whoever shall own the tenement and lands after my death shall pay to Elizabeth Acton my mother 40s. per annum for life.
To my brothers James, Richard and John 2 oaks each, the best they can choose upon my ground, and my sister Deeds is to suffer them to fell the oaks at their pleasure.
“Desiring God that this my last will and testament may…..be performed according to my mind.”
Witnesses George Smith parson of Chelsfield: William Waklyn.
Proved 27 October 1591 by Richard Acton.
[Rochester will 18.128]