Many thanks indeed for the clarification. It did seem odd that the nephew
should be witness and beneficiary although not of the property but I was
unaware of the 1837 Act.
As for the watch, seal and third item there is no trace of them. The land
passed to the brother-in-law within 18 months as the unmarried sister died
in 1848. He appears to have held on to the land for another twenty years
or so and then moved house. Whether he sold the land is not recorded; and
he didn't leave a Will. His wife outlived him by about ten years but she
didn't leave a Will either - so frustrating. There is no evidence any of
the four surviving children ever owned this land. All that remains are
four rather nice grave stones in the Parish Church.
At least I have some idea as to why the Will had to be sorted out in London
- for that many thanks!
On 17 May 2013 15:08, Richard Rose <rrose(a)otterquillbooks.com> wrote:
The legacy to the nephew would have been void under Section 15 of the
Wills Act of 1837 because he had witnessed the Will. If it was intended
that the land and any other property left by the will should come into the
nephew's nominal legal ownership as a trustee for the two sisters, before
assenting in their favour (i.e. putting the land into their names as
owners) then that would have also been a void legacy. I think this would
probably have caused the local probate authorities to insist on the will
being referred to London, where it would have been treated as an
intestacy. Administration rather than Probate would have been granted,
i.e. the nephew would have been treated not as an executor with a
legal interest in the property under the will but as an Administrator with
no interest who would need to enter into a separate obligation by the
direction of the Court to administer the estate according to the terms of
the will. There were probably orher complexities but I imagine that
something like what I have outlined was at the bottom of it all. And what
happened to the watch and seal, I wonder?
I hope that helps.
----- Original Message -----
*From:* Edward Llewellyn-Jones <edwardllansamlet(a)gmail.com>
*To:* Richard Rose <rrose(a)otterquillbooks.com>
*Sent:* Friday, May 17, 2013 2:08 PM
*Subject:* Re: [Dyfed] Probate puzzle
Thanks for your thoughts or speculation even! You may well be correct
that the clue may lie in the word 'administration' but if it does then I am
at a loss to see why.
The Will is straightforward. It starts with the usual requests for funeral
expenses and debts to be paid; then the apportioning of his property [no
details as to what it might have been] to his two sisters in equal part;
then gifts to his 'neavy' [nephew] of his watch, seal and a word I can't
make out but looks like 'hoath' or 'thoad'. He names his nephew
signs it before two witnesses, his brother-in-law and same nephew, who both
sign. It was proved at London on the 9th March 1847 before a judge by his
nephew having sworn by Commission to duly administer. And that is it!
It is one of the shortest Wills I have ever come across and lacking in
detail. There is plenty of speculation I can indulge in, and do so
privately, as the whole set of circumstances are odd. In the 1841 Census
he is living on his own means while his mother and sister, who live in the
same house are described as paupers. His nephew, also in the same house,
has no descriptor as to employment or such. That is why I threw myself on
the kindness and knowledge of members of the list to offer suggestions in
the hope there might be an answer. But it may well be that this is one
that can't be solved.
Again, many thanks
On 17 May 2013 13:02, Richard Rose <rrose(a)otterquillbooks.com> wrote:
> Dear Edward,
> Is there perhaps a clue in your use of the word 'Administration' rather
> than 'Probate'? Is there any hint of any legal formalities not completed
> by the testator in his own lifetime or by someone else relating to the
> property which he left? A partial intestacy or something like that?
> But I forget myself; this is speculation and searching without clues and
> I gather that WE are not prepared to do this.
> Best wishes,
> Richard Rose
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Edward Llewellyn-Jones" <
> To: <s.n.carter(a)btinternet.com>
> Cc: <dyfed(a)rootsweb.com>
> Sent: Friday, May 17, 2013 12:11 AM
> Subject: [Dyfed] Probate puzzle
> Hi Simon,
>> Thanks for your reply. Yes it is that Will and there is nothing to
>> why it was proved in London. There is mention of property
>> [undetermined] a
>> watch and a seal and something that looks like 'hoath'. The Executor, a
>> nephew, was granted administration. As far as I know the property
>> consisted in a few acres - about 15. These went to his two sisters.
>> are no more details. The Will is fifteen lines long; and the Probate bit
>> just three lines. There is no mention of holding property based on a
>> or freehold or anything - it simply says property.
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