Today I received a scan of the admission papers of John Smyth (who I believe to be my 4th great grandfather) into Greenwich Hospital School.
The first page reads (with handwritten parts italicized):
THESE are to Certify, That John Smyth Son of Jeremiah Smyth Mariner, by Mary his Wife, of the Parish of St Botolph Aldgate in the County of Middlesex is a real Object of Charity. In Witness whereof we the under-written Minister and Church-Wardens of the said Parish have hereunto set our Hands, this Third Day of February Anno 1753.
What might someone being a "real Object of Charity" indicate about their circumstances? John was aged 11 (almost 12) at the time.