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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 4, 1893.djvu/529

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517
Folk-lore in Wills.

tyme xijd." Hock Monday was the second Monday after Easter, and certain dues were then paid to the church-wardens, as appears by the Accounts of St. Dunstan's, Canterbury, printed in Arch├Žologia Cantiana; but whether the torch was for use in church, or at some revel, is not certain.

Richard Longeman of Halstow, in his will, dated 1493 [Book V, fo. 224a], mentions Shere Thursday. The will is curious as showing the custom of proclaiming, or posting up, secular matters in church:


"I will the curates in eueri church of the saide hundrede [Hoo] shewe in their churches that yff ther be any yoman any yomans felow or womens son in the saide hundrede that wilbye all the londes and tenements sumtyme Richarde Longeman of Halgesto, and geve for them as they be worth and sonest paye and content their for, shall haue them wyth the folde table, chayre and fourme in the hall; a ladder, the queern stones wt the beddyng and a cawdron in a foarneys to be wt the sale of the saide londes and tenements, and eueri curate to haue for the proclamyng of yt same iijd., and I will my obyte be kepte yerely on Shere Thursdaye wt prestes and clarkes syngyng, redyng and prayeyng, and at after noone that same day at the washeyng of the auters there to haue bred and ale."


Into the religious side of all the above (and they all had a religious significance in the minds of the testators) I do not wish to enter, but I should like to direct the attention of members to the field that is open to them, especially in the District Probate Registries, which contain for the most part the wills of yeomen, small farmers, and persons of the labouring classes, and therefore all the more likely to refer to such matters as I have brought before you.