(From the Oxford Will Registry).

            Will of Anthony Stilgoe de
      Dadington in Co. Oxford. Husbandman.
              Dated 28th May. 1606.

‘In the name of God Amen.

    I Anthonie Stilgoe of Dadington in the county of Oxon, husbandman, sicke in body but of perfect mind and memory (praise be God) doe make this my last Will and testament in manner and followinge. Fyrst I give and bequeathe my soule into the hand of the Almighty God, trustinge to be saved by the onlie death and passion of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christe, and my body to the earth from whence it was taken, my worldly goods thus I doe dispose.

  Fyrst I give unto ye Mother Church iiijd. Then I give unto sonne Thomas Stilgoe my seaven horses and coltes, exceptynge the herriot. My plows, carts and harrowes with plowe tymber, carte tymber and harrowe tymber, and all the furniture to them. Then I give unto him more all my part of the king’s and Deanes land belonging unto me this year, conditionally that he shall discharge all and all manner of debts that I do now owe any man, and that he shall put in sufficient secureity for the discharge thereof unto my wyffe and her assignes.

   Item. I will that the said Thomas Stilgoe shall well manure and till one yarde lande belonging unto my wyffe. Also one yard land of Theobaldes land during the time of her lyffe.

  Item. I give unto her more my cropp of Hay that lyeth this year in Bugbrooke. And yerely during the tylledge of Theobaldes Land iiijs of lawfull English money for each year.
   Item. I will that my said son shall upon a day’s wrninge bring home the said two yarde lands croppe to my house where now I dwell, and shall yerely fetch home to the said house two loads of wood during the natural lyffe of my said wyffe and shall yerely carry all such soil as shall be made unto the said two yard lands and likewise all kind of carriadges of stone and morter for building.

   Item. I give unto Nicholas Lynnet iiij bushells of corne, ij of manstlin and ij of barlie and iiij sheepe and to each of his children a sheep a peece runninge.

   Item. I give unto Nicholas Charman iiij bushells of corne, ij of manstlin and ij of barlie and iiij sheepe and to each of his children a sheepe a piece runninge.

   Item. I give unto my godsons iiijd a peece.

   Item. I give unto the poore at the day of my funerall to be disbursed Xs in money.

   Item. I give unto my sister Elizabeth Stilgoe ijs Vld in money. All the residue of my goods chattells and Household stuffe unbequeathed as well moveable and unmoveable I give and bequeathe unto my wyffe Elizabeth Stilgoe, whome I will to be the only executrix to this my last Will and testament. One Kymbell’s house situate and being in Castell Street during her natural lyffe charging her to see my body honestly brought unto the earth and to see my funeral discharged. The overseers to this my last Will and testament I ordeine to be Thomas Gylk and Richard Tredwell to whome I give XXd and pleece to take pains to see this my last Will and testament to be executed and performed, and to William Bennett ijs. In witness whereof I have putt my marke the day of yere above wrytten in the presence of Nicholas Linnett and Nicholas Charman and Thomas Stilgoe.

                                                      Anthonie Stilgoe. His mark.
Proved at Dadington Co. Oxford by
        Elizabeth Stilgoe on the 25th September,
1606. relict executrix.
        Consistory Court of Oxford'.

This will is interesting not only as typical of a husbandman, or yeoman, of those times, but the various farming implements, measurements, method of writing numerals, etc. will all be noted as characteristic.

   Mr. H. E. Stilgoe, Anthonie’s descendant, contributes the following information regarding localities mentioned.

  'Bugbrooke, sometimes referred to in Deddington documents as Bugbrook Butts, lies to the south of Harbour’s Hill Road. This road is the narrow lane leading out of the main Banbury to Oxford road ; it runs from west to east and occupies the ridge just above Dr. Turner's house. Harbour’s Hill is that portion of the land lying between Satin Lane and the little brook on the south side of Harbour's Hill Road. Satin Lane is now called St.Thomas’ Street, I believe'

   Mr. Stilgoe still owns a small field in Bugbrook Butts, which goes with the house in Council (formerly Castle) Street. Of this and the adjoining land the Stilgoe family have been Copy holders since the time of Anthony Stilgoe and probably before. It was part of the Windsor Manor until 1917 when Mr. H. E. Stilgoe enfranchised it.

  The numbers, or rather symbols of numbers, denoted by strokes are deciphered thus : ij is two ; iiij is four; Xs is ten shillings in money ; ijs VId is two shillings and sixpence.

  The expression "yard land" used in the Will is a measure, the quantity thereof varied in different parts of the country. Mr. Stilgoe writes :—‘I can throw some light upon this from a note made in 1640 by Zachary Stilgoe as follows :—

  "At a Court of Survey for Christ Church, Oxford, 16 October
   "How many acres do belong to a yard land ?
   "To some more, to some less, but we do guess there will be
   "about 18 acres in our common field measure, but not by
   "statute measure, at various places the yard land is determin-
   "ed by the number of beasts kept, i.e. at Deddington for each
   "yard land 2 horses, two beasts and thirty sheep."