[OLIVER, Lord Protector].

Grant of Probate of the will of John Bennett dated 19th November 1657.

Grant of Probate of the will of John Bennett of Hawkhurst in the County of Kent to Anne Bennett his relict and executor named in the will. Single sheet, 152x131mm. The grant of probate is signed by the officers of the Court, a Court which, as the first words of the document remind us, was under the authority of "Oliver, Lord Protector of ye Commonwealth of England, Scotland, Ireland ye Dominions Territories thereto belonging". Everyday Court documents (such as grants of probate) from the Commonwealth appear to be uncommon, their interest lying in what they reveal about the fluid and flexible conservatism of the English legal system, not much changing save for the name of the person in whom the State was embodied - King or Commoner, it made little difference.

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