When you have your Last Will and Testament written, alongside giving your whole estate to your partner, children or family, you can also leave “specific bequests”. These are often sentimental items or items of a high value, or something you feel that person will treasure and remember you by. For fact Friday, we have been researching the 7 funniest items and strangest conditions that people have written into their Wills!
In Henry Budd’s Last Will and Testament he left £200,000 for his 2 sons on the condition that neither of them grew a moustache. In another Will, Matthias Flemming shared his dislike, leaving his employees £10 each but only £5 to those who had a moustache.
Harry Houdini, the great escape artist and magician, left his wife a list of 10 words. This was a secret code that he believed would enable her to contact him in the afterlife.
3. Leaving everything to your pets
Eleanor Ritchey, heiress to the Quaker State Refining Corporation in the USA, left her 4.5million Dollar Estate to her 150 dogs. When the dogs all passed away, the rest of the estate went to the Auburn University Research Foundation.
4. Leaving everything to random strangers
A Portuguese Aristocrat Luis Carlos de Noronha Cabral da Camara was a childless Bachelor. He therefore decided how to leave his estate by picking 70 random names from a Lisbon phone book. These unsuspecting beneficiaries were informed that they were set to inherit after he passed away 13 years later.
5. Your Birthday
When the celebrated author Robert Louis Stevenson died, he left his birthday in his Will to his good friend Annie H. Ide. Apparently Annie has complained to Robert about the fact she was born on Christmas day and this was an inconvenience. Therefore he left her his Birthday, 13th November, and stated she should look after it with care.
Napoleon Bonaparte stated in his Will that his last Wish was that when he died, his head be shaved and his hair divided up between his friends. It is not clear how many friends it was divided between, but a later analysis of some of the hair showed large amounts of Arsenic, raising questions into the cause of his death.
John Bowman stated in his Will that he wished for his servants to prepare him Dinner every night after he passed, just in case he was to come back. He also left £50,000 in Trust to ensure there were funds to do this – his wife and children had passed before him and he believed they were all to come back together.