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Family and Education
This Member has not been identified. He may have been the ‘John Ryce’ who as early as 1567, together with his wife Christiana, carried out a transaction with Giles Estcourt concerning property at Newnton, near Imber, or he may have been a younger member of the family—perhaps the John Aprice of Imber who made his will on 27 Oct. 1607, asking to be buried in the church of Imber, to which he gave 10s., with a further 10s. to the poor of the parish. Among the larger sums left to his family were £100 to his son William, £200 each to the younger daughters of another son Thomas, who was dead, and £400 to Thomas’s younger son Edward; William also received a lease of property in Imber, held of the dean and chapter of Salisbury. John Aprice, Thomas’s elder son, was appointed executor, while William Aprice and a ‘cousin’ Christopher Polden were named overseers. The amounts of money bequeathed suggest that the testator was comfortably off, and the fact that he ‘put to’ his ‘sign’ instead of writing his name may have been due to age or weakness (he was ill when he drew up the will) rather than to illiteracy. The will was proved 28 Jan. 1608.
Imber is a considerable distance from Wootton Bassett, and if the man who made the will in 1607 was the MP, he presumably needed a patron. His colleague in 1601, John Wentworth, almost certainly owed his seat to the Earl of Hertford, and it may be that Hertford was given both nominations in that year. However, no connexion between Hertford and any branch of the Rice or Aprice family has been found.
Wilts. N. and Q. v. 569; PCC 110 Windebanck.