He made various charitable bequests by his will, and among them a gift of $50,000 to found an institution, opened as the "Astor House" in 1854, for the education of poor children and the relief of the aged and the destitute in his native village in Germany.
It is remarkable that he gives the same pecuniary bequests to Winchester and New Colleges as to his own college of Magdalen, but the latter he made residuary devisee of all his lands.
The endowments of the hospital were increased at various periods from bequests and forfeited estates.
Donations, bequests and the product of collections in churches.
Between 1881 and 1905 the bequests to existing institutions and sums left for the endowment of new institutions amounted to about 16,604,600.
In 1829 he made a will by which he appointed as his heir the duc d'Aumale, and made some considerable bequests to his mistress, the baronne de Feucheres (q.v.).
Other bequests for the same purpose were made, and from the year 1720 the Baptist Academy, as it was then called, received young men as students for the ministry among the Baptists.
By his will, made in 1852, with a codicil dated February 1859, his property, with the exception of some small bequests, was devised to the above-mentioned institution at Berlin.
On the 24th of July 1403, he made his will, giving large bequests amounting to some £io,000 (£300,000 of our money), to friends and relations and every kind of religious house.
In addition to the municipal support of the poor-houses there are large funds derived from bequests for the relief of the necessitous and deserving poor; while night shelters and people's kitchens have been organized on an extensive scale for the temporary relief of the indigent unemployed.
An inheritance tax is levied on all bequests in excess of $500 to persons other than specially excepted classes; and in 1907 the receipts from the " collateral inheritance tax " were $241,480.
Swift, who was intimate with him, speaks of him as "an arrant knave"; but the dean may have been disappointed at being unmentioned in Rivers's will, for he made a fierce comment on the earl's bequests to his mistresses and his neglect of his friends.
The important van der Hoop collection arose out of bequests by Adrian van der Hoop and his widow in 1854 and 1880; but the most famous pictures in the Ryks Museum are perhaps the three which come from the Trippenhuis, namely, the so-called "Nightwatch" and the "Syndics of the Cloth Hall" by Rembrandt, and the "Banquet of the Civic Guard," by van der Helst.
Bequests were sometimes made in connexion with bounds-beating.
The ministers received food and clothing from the contributions of the people, but also worked with their hands; the result of this was that they were very ignorant, and also were grasping after bequests from the dying.