If a woman acquired property in the city before consummating a marriage, she may freely bequeath it to whomever she wishes (i.e. not necessarily her husband), unless she bore her husband a child after the marriage. If so, her bequest may take the form of the tenement going to the legatee only after the death of her husband, so that the husband retains the tenement during his life (without doing it any waste). She may also distinguish in her testament whether a bequest is to her husband and his heirs in perpetuity or just for the term of his life.

[Note that the woman had to acquire the property before consummation of the marriage, not before contracting the marriage – the latter could sometimes occur at a young age, long before the real marriage ceremony took place. The provision for a husband's life-interest in a property after his wife's death, referred to as "courtesy of England" was more for the benefit of the children than of the husband and had its equivalent, for a widow, as "free bench".]