John & Anne Pond v Robert White

This is the chancery case concerning the estate of the grandfather of Ralph White, grocer of Stepney. The records for a chancery case consist of a complaint and a response. Each is written on one or more very wide documents which makes them time consuming to transcribe. The record I transcribed here is the complaint.

chancery document

To the right honorable Francis Lord Verulam Lord Chancellor of England
21 October 1619

Humbly complayning sheweth unto ye good lordship your suppliantes and duily orators John Pond of Fryerning in the countie of Essex and Anne his wife that whereas one John White of Shenfield in the said countie of Essex yeoman naturell father of ye oratrix Anne, was in his lifetime lawfull seised of an estate of inheritance/
of and in diyvers freehold and coppihold landes of a great value and posessed of dyvers goods chattells plate money jewells cattle househole stuff and other goods amounting to the some of five hundred poundes or thereabouts which were in his then dwelling house in Shenfield aforesaid which being coppihold land — descended after  his /
decease to Samuel White his eldest sonne and heire apparant who then dwelled in the said house with his said father, and he the said John White being so of the said free and copihild landes seised and of the said goodes and chattells possessed as aforesaid he the said John White about the begyning of Aprill in the year of our Lord /
god, one thousand six hundred and twelve – fell sick in his said house at Shenfield aforesaid and being so sick and waxing more sickly was conveyed by Robert White his younger sonne to his the said Roberts then dwelling house being at Southweald in the said countie of Essex leaving the said goodes chattels/
and money in his said house at Shenfield in the custodie and possession of the said Samuel White his eldsest sonne four score poundes of which money was enclosed in a box or trunk locked and laied or hidden in an upper rome or garett of the said howse amongst some tymber there; And fowr score/
and seaven poundes two shillinges and foure pence more in silver and gold was inclosed in a chest locked in the  same house and thirtie poundes more was laid upp in a bagge in some other place in the said house, and being indebted onely in the some of foure score poundes for some landes lying in/
Hockley in the said countie which he had then lately before purchased he the said John White being in good and perfect memorie about the eight day of April in the yeare aforesaid made his last will and testament in writing in the  said dwelling house of the said Robert white And the said John White/
by his said last will and testament did give and devise unto the said Robert White and his heires as well the said purchased landes lying in Hockley aforesaid as dyvers other of his freehold landes and gave also by his said last will unto the said Robert Whte the sone some of fourscore poundes/
of lawfull English money and did also give dyvers other small legacies to dyvers other persons not exceeding in the whole the some of eight poundes and the residue of all his goodes he did thereby will should be equally devided between his three children videlct? the said Samuel/
White his eldest sonne and the said Robert and the oratrix Anne and make the said Robert White his sole Exectror of the same his said last will and testamentand the oratrix further shew unto the the good Lordship that after the making of the said will and before the said John White dyed/
he the said John White being and contuing still in perfect memorie willed that the said Robert White his executor to goe unto his the said testators house at Shenfieldand there to take unto his custodie the said boxe or to mark wherein was the said fourscore pounds which he then/
appressed and declared to be the  fourscore poundes which the said testator had bequeathed unto the said Robt by his said will and willed him therewith to satisfie and discharge the said fourscore poundes which he was aforesaid owed for the said purchase landes, and thereupon the said/
Robert White before his said father deceased went accordingly to his said fathers house to take uhnto his handes the said box and money but the said Samuel having knowledge of the said box and money — at that tyme refused to permitt or suffer the said Robert to have or take the same And within/
few daies after the said testator dyed so seized of the said landes and possessed of the said goodes, chattells ?? mony plate jewells and household stuff besides the said somes of money above menconed and other things some part whereof are herafter menconed that is to say one cupboard, one/
table plank three formes one bedstedd two ?? beddes a drawing table two chaires certen old bookes and a cobiron? of the value of five poundes and upwards one other bedstedd two featherbedds one ?bedd one boulster three blanketts one roberlett?, one table three chestes/
one pillow two arming bills one arming sword and dagger one caliber with flaske touchbox headpeen and cock with paroer of the value of tenne poundes and upwards and also nyne paire of sheetes one table cloth six napkins an two shirt of th evalue of five poundes &/
upwards and also one other bedstedd with a mast one chest one table one chair a deske with old iron  the value of fortie shillings and more and also one other bedstedd one fether bedd and coverlett a paire of curtaines and rodds with a chest of the value of foure pounds or thereabouts/
And also seven peices of pewter, one brass pott one stone mortar one spitt with a paire of iron ?? one chussing? dish one planke or kneding troff a quarmi? two sackes one lithe ??? to with all of the value of foure poundes or therabouts, and also the said testators wearing apparell/
of the value of five poundes or thereabout ,and also twentie sheepe and twelve lambes at the value of seven poundes and upwards, and also two mares one nagg and two coltes of the value of tenn poundes or thereaboute and also six cowes and a calf three ???/
bull and two ?? calves of the value of thirtie poundes or thereabouts, and also one long cart two dungcartes two ploughes one pair of harrows with the ?? of the value of six poundes or thereabouts and dyvers other goods and chattels of very great value/
which ye said orator cannot now particulary sell downe, And also in good debtes by bondes these somes due unto the testator by the persons likewise herein mentioned that is to say by one one John Church the some of one and twentie poundes by one William Dunelll and Nathaniel Lanier the some/
of tenne poundes and tenne shillinges and by them also the some of one and twentie poundes of one Thomas Arnott and Mary Frith the some of fortie poundes and by the said Arnott and one — Dodson the some of two and fortie poundes by one Gregoris Smith five/
poundes and by one Edward Pond five poundes by one five poundes by one John Bernard the elder the some of five pounds three shillings and for pence and by one John Barnard the younger thirteen pounds eight shillings, by one John Porter and Thomas Porter five pounds six shillings/
eight pence, by one Richard Corke three poundes seven shillings six pence by one Robert Frith and William Frith the some of one and thirtie poundes and tenn shillings by one John Freud and Thomas Whitbread the some of two and twentie poundes by one  Charles Fishen the some/
of fifie three shillings four pence and by one Thomas Clark the some of five pounds five shillings and by one Robert Care the some of fifteen poinds and dyvers other debtes due by dyvers other men by bondes billes and specalties and other which to ye orators unknown;/
And ye oratore further shew unto ye good Lordshipp that before or about the tyme of the decease of the said John White the testator the said Samuel White his eldest sonne haveing ?? the said fowerscore poinds so given to the said exector Robt by the said testator and appointed to be paid/
for the purchased lands as aforesaid was laid did take the said trunk or box and the said fowerscore pounds therein inclosed  into his the said Samuell custodie with intent to convert the same to his owne use, but afterwards being very much trubled in minde (as it serveth for his soe/
??? deteyning of the same from his said brother Robert the executor he the said Sameull did delyver the said fourscore poundes to the said Robert White the executor and shortly afterwards dyed not having ??? part or parcell of the goods chattells mony or/
estate of the said testator so devised to him as aforesaid by reason whereof and by vertue of the said last will and testament the one moity of the said testators goodes chattels cattle plus ready mony debtes household stuff and other things (his debtes legacies and funerall charges did  noted/
doth in right equitie and good conscience belong unto ye oraters as in right of the said Anne the daughter of hte said John White the testator; And ye orators further shew unto ye good Lordship that the said Robert White the executor shortley after the said testator deceased did/
take upon him the said executor shipp and proved the said will according to the  course of the  eccecliasicall lawes of this realme and took into his handes and posession all of the  residue of the said testators money goodes chattles cattles household stuff bondes & specialties/
whatsoever and did within short tyme after ??? not onely all the before menconed debtes above menconed but also many other somes of money due to the said testator in his life tyme by dyvers sundry other persons the particulars whereof ye orators cannot make plainly/
express, And ye oratrors doe further show unto ye good Lordship that the said Robert White the executor having got all of the testators estate into his hands and posession and most unconscioably meaning and endevorin to defraude ye orators of the most part of the porcon/
of ye said oratorix Anne intended unto her by her said fathers will used all the means he could possible devise to conceale soe much theref and the true values of the said goodes and chattells from the  orators he could and to that end and purpose so it is and it may please/
your good Lordship he the said Robert White caused an inventory to be made of the some of the said testators goodes cattle and houshold stuff and the same to be praised by pr?? by himself chosen who were his friends and who by the pr?? of the said executor prayed them not to half the value of or furr/
under the true value leaving out of the said inventory very many of the said testators goods of very great value and also leaving out of the said inventory many somes of ready mony which the said testator left at the tyme of his death and ?? to the said executors hands and also dyvers bondes billes and specialties/
of the said testator which ??? inventory notwithstanding the said Robert White the  executor did afterwards exhibit into the prerogative court of Canterbury as a true and perfect inventory, And further the said Robert White the better to ?? his unconscionable ?? against ye oratrix giveth out that he did/
pay unto the said Samuell White in his life tyme the some of four score poundes in satisfaccon of his the said Samuells part of the said testaors estate, By meanees whereof and by the other the subtill ?? of the said Robert White ye orators are likely to be defrauded of these most just ??/
of the testators estate bequeathed as aforesaid unto ye oratrix Ann and which doth of right belong unto her by virtue of the said  will; In tender consideracon wherof and forasuch as ye orators doe not know the certainty of the  said goodes and chattells nor the true value of the mony & debts/
and money oweing to the testator nor to what some his psonal estate did amount unto and connot by the court of the comon lawes of this Realme impose and compell the said Robert White to sett forth and discover the truth and certenty of what goods mony house stuff ???/
said testator died posessed of and came to the said executors hands or the handes of some other to his use and the true value of the said goodes chattells & plate household stuffe & cattle and how much he or some other for him have or hath severall and respectively sold the same, And for  also ye orators by/
reason they know not the certain pticulers of the said money goodes chattells household sutffe plate cattle & debtes nor the true value of them cannot by the court of the comon lawe inforce or compell the said Robert White to make unto them satisfacion of their true & just part of the said testators/
estate, And for yt the truth of the premisses resteth chiefly to be discovered by the said Robert White in his answere to this orators bill or if he shall denie the same ye orators doubt not but produce such sufficient matter as will induce this honorable court to relieve them ???/
May it therefore please ye good Lordship the premisses confessed to grant unto ye orators his Majesties most gratious writt of subpoena to be unto the the said Robert White directed commanding him thereby at a certain daie and ??? a certaine point therein to be hymself to be and personally/
appeare before ye good Lordship in his Majesties high courte of chancery then and there upon his corporall oath to answer unto all and every the premisses plainly truely pticulerly and directly and to ??? to and abide such orders in the premisses as to ye Lordship shall  ???/
equitie and good conscience And your orators shall daily pray unto god for the long contyuance of your Lordship his health with much ???