'Hunnisett' Wills etc.
Wills before 1858
Before 1858 English and Welsh wills were proved either in the local Ecclesiastical Court or in the Perogative Courts of Canterbury or York. Those that survive are generally found in County Record Offices or the National Archives. Older Wills lists those wills I know about and their location. Some of those at the National Archives are downloadable from their site DocumentsOnline. Where extracts from a will are shown elsewhere on this site the link is via the testators name.
If you know of other wills please let me know and I will add them to the list. Similarly, if you know of any wills proved in other countries I would be pleased to hear about them.
Wills at First Avenue House
The Principal Probate Registry has either originals or copies of all English and Welsh wills and administrations since 1858. These can be viewed, or copies obtained from First Avenue House, 42-49 High Holborn, in London.
I have extracted all the 'Hunnisett' entries from the index books from 1858 to 1950. These are shown in Post-1858 Wills indexed by first name and year. Because of space limitations I am only showing the name of the testator, where they were from, whether it was a will or an administration, the date of probate and the office. The actual index entry gives a lot more information (dates, addresses, trustees, value etc.). Please contact me if you need more information about any of these entries.
Between 1530 and 1750 it was sometimes necessary to file an inventory when probate or letters of administration had been granted. A list and valuation of the deceased's movable goods was prepared by two to four local men, usually friends or relatives, in order to avoid or resolve disputes. I have only found one inventory directly applying to a Hunnisett, that of Richard Hunniset, farmer of Herstmonceux, who died in 1732.
If a person died intestate, ie did not leave a will, an application could be made to administer the estate and divide it among the beneficiaries. Letters of Administration (or admons) were issued but these gave little information other than date and place of death and the names of the adminisrators.
If a person had not made a written will but, knowing he was near to death, made an oral declaration of his wishes the court could still grant probate if it was satisfied that the alleged declaration had in fact been made. This was then known as a nuncupative will. The will of Clement Honisett made in 1672 was nuncupative and the will of Constance Honnisett also contains the nuncupative will of her husband William who had died only a month earlier
Transcripts of some 'Hunnisett' wills
This section contains transcripts of some of the 'Hunnisett' wills that I have copies of or have obtained transcripts of. Many of them have proved crucial in helping to link families together.
Some of the copies are very easy to read but some, especially the older ones, are very difficult to transcribe, particularly with names as the context doesn't help as it does with most words. Where I have failed to transcribe a word I have indicated it thus '........' or 'tra.....th' with the dots usually giving an approximation of the length of the missing word. If you have a copy of the will and can help with any of the missing words or spot any mistakes in my transcript please let me know.
After each transcript I have listed the relationships shown within the will. It should be remembered that these were current at the date the will was written, not necessarily when the testator died, which in some cases was years later.