[From Proc IoMNH&ASoc vol 3]



15th January, 1928.

I had the good fortune, some time ago, to re-discover a most interesting collection of old documents, the property of my maternal grandfather, the late William Corlett, H.K., J.P., of Ballamona-beg, Ballaugh. These old documents, some of which date back to 1658, throw light on the history of many of the old families of the parish, amongst them the Tear's of Ballabeg and Ballamona, from which our great Naturalist, Edward Forbes, was descended.

In the Manorial Roll of 1515 we find that 'Patrick Tereboy' owned a part of Ballamoaney (now Ballamona), and from that time onwards there were ' Tear-boys ' (as they were called locally) of Ballamona until about 1830. The Tear's of Ballabeg are not recorded in the 1515 Rolls as the owners or tenants of that place, but ' Patrick Crayne ' is the recorded owner. The documents now in my possession lead me to believe that at a later date one of the Tears of Ballamona married the daughter and heiress of the last Crayne of Ballabeg, and so we now find the Tears settle in that part, and they, in time, are entered as the heirs of Ballabeg. On more than one occasion they married back into the Ballamona side of the (Tear) family, and also into the Corlett family of Ballamona-beg, which family had also previously married members of the Tear (Ballamona) family. Thus we find that Edward Forbes was, on the maternal side, a real full-blown Manxman and a noble son of the best known northern clans. There are now, alas no Tears of Ballabeg or Ballamona, and Wm. Corlett (the owner of these papers) was the last male heir of his line. His elder daughter still owns Ballamona-beg. We still have the ruined homestead, in the midst of a once grand orchard, at Ballabeg. Soon even this will have passed. Before it is too late, can what remains not be saved and marked for future generations, so that they, at least, may know the real site of the homestead of Forbes' Manx forbears and the home of his youth. For many years past a cottage on another part of the farm has been pointed out as the family home, but this is entirely wrong, and to save such a mistake from being perpetuated it would be wise to have this ' tholtan ' marked by a plate of a suitable character.

The following genealogical table shows the descent of Edward Forbes from the Tears and Corletts :-

The Teares of Ballabeg, Ballaugh, and their relationship to Ed. Forbes
William Teare = Elizabeth Corlett
              |   (Ballamoney-beg)
           William = Jane Craine
           d 1804  |
      |                                  |
      |                                  |   (1)            (2)
    Jane = Ed Forbes                 Margaret =  Wm Corlett  = Isabel Stephen
         | (Oakhill Douglas)        (no issue)  (B'money-beg)|  (Ballamoar)
         |                                                   |
  +------+--------------+-------------+                    2 daus
  |                     |             |                      |
 Ed = Emily Ashworth   David = ?    Jane = G. Allwood     (writer + others)
Prof|                        |           |
    |                        |           |
   Emily = Marquis         David = ?   George = ?
         |  de de Penelli        |            |
         |                       |            |
        3 sons                 2 daus       George

I also add a copy of his grandfather Teare's will, as it is the shortest of these old documents, and will be of interest to those interested in the family history of a great and, noble Manxman such as the late Professor Edward Forbes, F.R.S.

The following is a copy of the ' last Will and Testament ' of Wm. Teare, of Ballabeg, in the parish of Ballaugh, who was the maternal grandfather of Professor Edward Forbes, F.R.S.: -


Anno Dmi. 1804.

In the Name of God. Amen.

I, William Teare, of the Ballabeg in the parish of Ballaugh, being weak in body but of sound and disposing mind and memory and understanding, do make and publish this my last will and testament in manner following, that is to say :

First. I resign my soul to God Almighty, and my body to Christian burial at the discretion of my Executrix hereinafter named.

Item. I leave and bequeath unto my youngest daughter, Margaret, the sum of fifty pounds, to be applied by the guardians hereinafter named, in paying off and discharging a certain mortgage affecting and chargable against certain premmisses called ' Faie Rob,' which said lands and premisses have been settled and granted unto William Corlett, schoolmaster, by deed by me duly executed in trust for the use of my said daughter Margaret, to be possessed by her on the death of the survivor of John Cain and Margaret his wife; and I also leave and bequeath unto my said daughter Margaret, a sheep and a lamb.

Item. I leave and bequeath unto John Stephen, John Hughes, and Thomas Corlett, the guardians of my children hereinafter named, the sum of one hundred and thirty pounds, to be by them laid out at interest, in trust, for the purposes hereinafter mentioned, that is to say, the interest of one hundred pounds thereof to be paid or applied to the use of my youngest daughter, Margaret, until she comes into the possession and enjoyment of the said lands called ' Faie-rob,' and until the 12th day of November thereafter, and the interest of the remaining thirty pounds to be by them paid from time to time as the same shall become due, unto Thomas Craine, who now resides with me, for and during his natural life and at each of the periods aforesaid, the said principal sums to be received by the said guardians or any two of them or the representatives of any two of them, and to be paid as so much in discharge of a certain mortgage granted by me unto Charles Quayle, of the parish of Jurby, bearing date and May, 1804.

Item. I leave and bequeath unto the said Thomas Craine three sheep.

Item. I leave and bequeath unto my eldest daughter, Jane [Ed. Forbes' mother.], a sheep and a lamb.

Item. I leave and bequeath unto the poor of the parish of Ballaugh, one guinea, to be distributed amongst them at the Christmas next after my decease.

Lastly. I nominate, constitute and appoint my loving wife, Jane Teare, alias Craine, sole and whole executrix, of this my last will and testament, leaving and bequeathing all the rest and residue of my cash, goods, credits and effects, moveable and unmoveable, or what nature and kind whatsoever, and do nominate and appoint John Stephen, John Hughes, and Thomas Corlett, all of Ballaugh, guardians and supervisors of my said two children, hereby authorising and requesting them to manage and conduct all and singular the affairs of these my said children in such a just and reaesonable manner as they or any two of them shall think proper.

In witness thereof I hereunto sett my name this second day of May, 1804.


WILLIAM TEARE. Witnessed by-


The probate of this will was granted at a Chapter Court held at Kirk Michael, 19th June, 1804.


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