This document was sent to me by André Escaravage

Given at Red Bay, Labrador on 22nd June 1577


Following is a transcription of a document discovered and translated from the original Basque language by historical geographer Selma Barkham. Dr. Barkham has spent many years performing archival research of 16th century Basque activities in Labrador.

In the name of God, Amen. Let it be known by this letter of testament, and last and ultimate will, that I, Juan Martinez de Larrume, burgess of the Town of Orio, in bed and ill but with as sound a mind as it has pleased our Lord to give me, ordain and establish this my testament in the following manner:

Firstly, I commend my soul to God the Father, who created and redeemed it with the precious blood of His only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ - and my body to the earth from which it was formed.

Item. I ask that after it has served our Lord to remove me from this present life that my funeral and memorial services be celebrated in the Church of Saint Nicolas in the town of Orio (in whichever sepulchre that Ana de Ernialde, my wife, desires) on the third and ninth days and at the end of the first and the second year, in accordance with the respect due to my person.

Item. I ask that four masses shall be said at the four altars of the said Church of Saint Nicolas and that they be paid for from my possessions.

Item. I ask that four other masses be said for me in Saint Martin in the town of Orio to be paid for from my possessions.

Item. I ask that one mass shall be said for me in the Church of our Lady of Yrun Urancu and that one "real" be given in alms for the lamp of our Lady.

Item. I ask that a quarter "real" be given in alms for the lamp of Saint Catherine in the town of San Sebastian.

Item. I send another quarter "real" for the lamp of Saint Clara in San Sebastian.

Item. I send to both San Sebastian el Antifuo and Saint Martin in the town of San Sebastian one quarter "real" each.

Item. I send in pilgrimage to Saint Stephen's in the town of Usurbil the money for a mass.

Item. I ask that a mass be said for the souls in purgatory.

Item. I send in pilgrimage to our Lady of Aranzazu whatever Ana de Ernialde, my wife, would like to send.

Item. I ask that a mass be said in San Pelayo of Zarauz.

Item. I ask that another mass be said in the chapel of the Holy Crucifix of Burgos.

Item. I ask that another be said in San Blas of Zarauz.

Item. I ask that another mass be said at the altar of our Lady in the parish Church of Orio.

Item. I ask that 24 "reales", for which I am responsible, be paid to the Hospital of the town of Orio, and more if during my absence Domingo de Echabe has recovered a little.

Item. I ask that 13 "reales" be repaid for a bottle of oil which I received from the master of the ship.

Item. I ask that Sebastian de Aranburu be repaid the 3 1/2 "reales" that I owe him.

Item. I declare that Joanes de Senger, and George, and the son of Joanes de Arbe, and Joanes de Zubiechea, and Pedro de Oribar, and Baltasas owe me 13 "reales" for a bottle of oil from our ship for which I was made responsible. I ask that they repay me.

Item. I declare that Lanzarote owes me one ducat that I lent him in cash. I ask that it be repaid.

Item. I declare that Martin de Arbelaiz owes me 20 "reales" that I lent him in cash. I ask that they be collected.

Item. I declare that the caulker owes me 4 "reales". I ask that they be collected.

Item. I declare that Nicolas de Yceta owes me 14 1/4 "reales". I ask that they be collected.

Item. I declare that Joanes de Porcheta owes me 7 "reales". I ask that they be collected.

Item. I declare that if by chance my daughter, Marie de Larrume, should die before she comes of age, and my sister, Domicuca de Larrume, should collect the money owed me by Master Martinde Licarca - that the money is to be divided between my father and Ana de Ernialde, my wife; and the silver cup that I took with me when I married should be given back to my father if my daughter never comes of age.

Item. If my daughter dies, I appoint and declare Ana de Ernialde, my legitimate wife, as the universal heir to all my goods, furniture and property, rights and actions, and I ask that this Testament be kept and fulfilled with the bequests that are in it; and I give my legal power to all magistrates of his Holy Majesty to see that it is carried out and fulfilled.

To which were present as witnesses:

Joanes de Urdaide and Domingo de Echeverria and Cristobal de Arriaja burgesses of the town of Orio; and for the said Juan Martinez de Larrume, at this request, the said Cristobal de Arriaja signed for him - since due to great infirmity and weakness he was unable to sign.

Done in Butus, which is in the Province of Terranova, on the 22nd day of the month of June, in the year one thousand, five hundred and seventy seven.


At the request of the party,

     Xtobal de Arriaja