Fourth English Generation
probably ____ Sydnor,2 William
born after 1466, died in late 1514 or early 1515 probably in the
City of London and probably buried in Blackfriars at Ludgate in London
accordance with instructions given in his will dated 29 October [1514?] and
probated on 26 February 1514/5. He
willed three shillings* and four pence* "to the high altar of my parish
church of St Petrock
in Exeter in Devon."
received the principal messuage*, unnamed but possibly Elmhurst
in Egerton and Boughton Malherbe, from his father's estate. William
also probably acquired other lands at Egerton and Boughton Malherbe [Bowton and Bocton] in Kent during his lifetime.
His will showed him to be a person of some wealth beyond his inheritance.
On 10 March 1511/2 at a hearing in the parish of Boughton Malherbe in
Kent, the chancellor* for the diocese of Canterbury heard evidence from Thomas
one and a half pence* for property he and his father had once held in the parish
of Boughton Malherbe was then due from William Sydnor [Sednor] of the diocese of
During his final months of life as he approached age fifty, William
appeared to be settled in London.
In his will, William bequeathed the considerable sum of £10 sterling to
"my brother Sir Thomas Sydnor
canon* of Leeds priory in Kent.
Children (by his probable first wife):
born circa 1490.
Richard was bequeathed, after an annuity to his brother Thomas, the
family lands in Egerton
and Boughton Malherbe. No
will of record for Richard has been found.
It appeared that Richard's portion fell to Paul who traded the family
interest in lands here for other properties in Kent and Suffolk.
born circa 1495?; unmarried in 1514 when she was bequeathed £40 by her father.
born circa 1495?; unmarried in 1514 when she was bequeathed £40 by her father.
Children (by his second wife):
born circa 1500?, living in 1515 when he was named in his father's will;
probably unmarried. Thomas was
bequeathed an annuity of five marks* per year by his father from lands in
and Boughton Malherbe after his mother's death.
born January 1506/7, died 16 December 1551; married circa 1530 Alice Jenour
E19. MARGARET SYDNOR
Sydnor,1 probably ____ Sydnor,2
William Sydnor Sr3), born circa 1470?, living 20 March 1523/4. Margaret
did not leave a will of record.
born by 1515. living 1524.
born by 1515, living 1524.
, born by 1515, died by
E23. WILLIAM SYDNOR
probably ____ Sydnor,2 John Sydnor
born circa 1475?, living 1504 when his father's will was written; of
William shared in his father's messuage* and lands at Lynsted
Kent, together with his brother Richard.
In his will, William left modest bequests to Henry Woden
and the children of William Elliott
He left 6£ to Alice Savage alias* Dyer
He left his messuage* and orchard
with forty shillings* owing to William Boycott
born circa 1510?, will dated 24 September 1562 and probated 19 February 1562/3;
married circa 1535? Clemence ____
birth year was estimated because William Jr was a minor, probably less than
eighteen, when his father's will was written in 1483.
will of William Sydnor Jr was found at Prerogative Court of Canterbury,
Holder f.4. See Appendix.
reference to “my parish church . . . in Exeter” was interesting, because
William was living in London and expected to be buried there. Perhaps a business or real estate venture provided by his son
Richard who was an archdeacon there, perhaps an advantageous marriage
arranged by that Richard had brought William to reside in Devon so far from
Kent and London, and his presence in London at the time of his death was
just a visit.
his will, William bequeathed the house in Exeter "afterward to my
children, the which be lawfully begotten between the said Joan my wife and
me." Thus he and Joan had
more than one child by their marriage.
Although it was not uncommon to refer to children as "lawfully
begotten," the fact that he carefully noted Joan as his present wife in
the bequest suggested that some of his other children were from a previous
marriage or even marriages.
Later in the same document, William referred to Thomas as "my
son by Joan my wife." Since
William thus appeared to deliberately separate Thomas from his older
siblings, it was probable that the older children were by a previous
marriage. Paul was younger than Thomas because he was the only one for
whom provisions of wardship were made.
Also Paul was listed last in the order of the will.
Unless Joan, his then-present wife, was from Exeter, it was curious
that William would have bequeathed her the residence in Exeter, a place so
far from Kent.
Joanna and Johanna
were the Latin forms of Jean, Jane,
and Joan. In this case,
both William Sydnor's will and Joan's father's will gave the name as Joane.
age was estimated as slightly less than William.
was not shown in the probate of William's will for which she had been named
executor along with William Jr's brother Richard.
It was possible that she shortly followed her husband in death.
No will for Joan was found, and that was surprising since she
appeared to hold interests in property in several dioceses and since her
husband appeared to be trained
in law. Perhaps she remarried,
perhaps she did not survive her husband long enough, or perhaps she disposed
of her interests and relied on the goodwill of her children for her care.
modern street name has been simplified to North Street. The expression, "sign of the crown," probably
reflected the practice by owners of houses in towns and cities to use signs
with pictures to distinguish their houses, since houses were unnumbered.
were two widows with other surnames with given name Johane
(thus Jean, Joan, or Jane) found in the rolls for St Petrock parish.
See Tudor Exeter Tax
Assessments, 1489-1595, (Devon and Cornwall Record Society), v.22,
lands inherited from his father have helped identify the descent of the
family. It was possible that
William derived this Sydnor property from another branch of Sydnors.
was almost certainly Boughton Malherbe where he had inherited property from
Kentish Visitations of Archbishop
William Warham and his Deputies, 1511-1512, (Kent Archaeological
Society, ed. K. L. Wood-Legh), v.24 (1984), pp.211-212.
another diocese was involved, the chancellor* was obliged to refer the
matter to the archbishop of Canterbury.
was the strongest evidence that any Sydnor may have resided in Sussex.
Freedom was the right to participate in the privileges
attached to membership in (1) a company or trade or (2) citizenship
in a town or city. The word citizen
[cives] which occurred in the charters of English cities became
synonymous with freemen. Admission
of new citizens to the freedom occurred through apprenticeship in the
guilds, by purchase, or by inheritance.
Beyond the general exemption from tolls throughout the country
conferred by the city charters, freemen enjoyed an absolute monopoly of
trade in certain articles and of retail trade in others.
They had a complete monopoly of retail selling, with little
exception. Guild members were
freemen. Only the freemen could
Exeter Freemen, 1266-1967, ed.
Margery M. Rowe and Andrew M. Jackson, (Devon and Cornwall Record Society,
Extra Series I, 1973), p.66.
It seems unusual that he chose to become a freeman* in Exeter at the
age of forty-five. From that
purchase of freedom, one might surmise William had a particular financial
reason or interest in the area which required that membership, perhaps as a
result of an estate or financial opportunity derived from his brother's
service with the diocese of Exeter.
reason for residence in London is not clear from the records; perhaps with a
final illness, perhaps involved in law, or perhaps involved in some business
these children were shown in his will.
was named the eldest son in his father's will and no provision was made for
his minority. This indicated
that he was probably twenty-one years of age or more when the will was
drafted in 1514.
lack of a will or testament for an eldest son would have been unusual,
unless it were that Richard did not survive the probate of his father's will
or that he had no immediate family and disposed of property before his
was a beneficiary in the will of her brother William Sydnor Jr [E16].
was mentioned in the will of his wife's brother William Sydnor Jr [E16].
Roger also gave his wife's name as Margaret in his own will.
Roger was also mentioned in the wills of his mother and father.
The name of the nearby village called Southerden evolved from
Swethrynden, with many spelling variants along the way.
yeoman was a free tenant, usually
a prominent farmer, a holder of a small landed estate, who worked with his
hands and thereby who could not be termed a gentleman.
He was a freeholder under
the rank of gentleman, hence a
commoner or countryman of respectable standing, especially one who
cultivated one's own land.
will of Roger Swethrynden was found at Archdeaconry Court of Canterbury,
Probate Record 17, v.15, f.253v. See
The years of the date of the will and of probate in the copy were
given as 1523. The date when
the will was made has been assumed to be in error, perhaps because of the
proximity of the new year. There
were no further wills or genealogies to show clearly the further descent of
The family name was likely taken from the nearby parish of Surrenden
in this section of Kent.
will of Henry Swethrynden was found at Archdeaconry Court of Canterbury,
Probate Record 17, v.6, f.206. See
will of Florence Swethrynden was found at Archdeaconry Court of Canterbury,
Probate Record 17, v.6, f.205. See
children were named in the wills. Margaret's
brother William Sydnor Jr [E16] noted in his will of 1515 that his sister
had four children and in his will gave ten shillings* to each.
was shown as eight years old when his father's will was written.
was mentioned in her father's will.
was mentioned in her father's will.
child was not mentioned in its father's will, but William Sydnor Jr [E16]
mentioned four children for his sister Margaret in his will..
date was estimated from his age at the time his father's will was written.
These possible children were both of Otham, which suggested probably
a common father. In addition both not only used the same priest but
William Sr could have used his share of inheritance to start his
adult endeavors in the Leeds and Otham parishes.
Another possibility for placing these children was Stephen Sydnor
[E5] who was from Leeds may have had an undiscovered son who was responsible
for these children. Otham is
next to Leeds and close to Egerton, sites of other Sydnors.
common first name with his possible father was a factor in his listing here.
It was possible that William Jr was a son of another Sydnor, but it
was very probable that he was the brother of Walter [E49].
The will of William Sydnor Jr was found at Archdeaconry Court of
Canterbury, Probate Records 17, v.36, f.15.
this William Sydnor Jr had a wife or children, they probably had predeceased
him. None were mentioned in his
Yeoman was a free tenant, usually a prominent farmer who worked with his
hands and thereby who could not be termed a gentleman*; a freeholder under
the rank of gentleman*, hence a commoner or countryman of respectable
standing, especially one who cultivated one's own land.
relationship of William and his brother Walter with Richard Cally was not
Hendley surname appeared again when a Elizabeth Hendley married George Fane
who was the executor of the will for Paul Sydnor [E43].
£6 given to Alice in his will was a significant sum in its day, however the
relationship was not found.
obligation by William to the Boycotts was not found.
was only linked with this possible father because it was very probable that
he was the brother of William Jr [E48] who in turn had some claim to this