Justices of Gaol Delivery: Gaol Delivery Rolls and Files
Gaol delivery rolls and files for the thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Most of the rolls and files either include deliveries for a single county or, especially from the fourteenth century onwards, for a whole circuit consisting of a number of counties. Some files were formerly in KB 9. The rolls include records of pleadings, with some calendars of prisoners and copies of commissions. The files also include calendars, and a variety of items such as original commissions, jury panels, lists of justices of the peace and local officials, coroners' inquests and records of abjurations of the realm, appeals, sheriffs' inquisitions, lists of pledges for good behaviour, copies of pardons and writs of non molestatis in support of them, warrants of attorney, and various other kinds of writs and letters. During the fifteenth century the circuit clerks ceased to compile gaol delivery rolls or return gaol delivery files to the Exchequer, and so these records virtually cease for nearly a century, until 1559.
The series includes material relating to sessions held between 1351 and 1361 when Henry, Duke of Lancaster, exercised powers of the Palatinate of Lancaster but which were separated from the Palatinate's series of rolls (PL 25 and PL 26)
The first section (JUST 3/1-84) comprises records relating to particular individual counties, and is arranged alphabetically by order of county and in chronological order within counties; the second (JUST 3/85-221) consists of records relating to groups of counties, arranged in chronological order; the third (JUST 3/222-226) is a random sequence of records identified and added since the original arrangment was made at the end of the nineteenth century.
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