Catalogue description Fleet Prison: Commitment Books

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Details of PRIS 1
Reference: PRIS 1
Title: Fleet Prison: Commitment Books

Books detailing the commitment to the Fleet Prison of debtors unable to stand bail for themselves, and therefore committed until the bail was paid. Entries include the commitment number (useful in tracing prisoners' records), the name of the person committed, the date, the justice ordering the committal, and the charge - debt, bankruptcy or a claim for trespass damages.

In the margins of the books there are often further details, including the date of the discharge of bail and the sum concerned, the date of imprisonment if applicable, and sometimes the names of the lawyers involved, or the date of death of the prisoner if they had not survived long enough to attend court. Correspondence concerning individual cases is occasionally to be found loose between the pages of the books.

Date: 1686-1842
Related material:

For rough or condensed versions of commitment books see

See also Court of Bankruptcy records in B 2

PRIS 10/18

PRIS 10/20

PRIS 10/21

PRIS 10/22

PRIS 10/23

PRIS 10/24

PRIS 10/25

PRIS 10/26

For the Fleet commitment and discharge book see PRIS 10/157

PRIS 10/19

Separated material:

It is unclear if any commitment books existed before 1685. There are a number of gaps in the series. The gap between 1695-1698 can be partly filled by the Fleet commitment and discharge book in PRIS 10/157. There is no means of obtaining information on commitments between 1729-1733 and 1748-1769. A lost book would account for the gap between 1729-1733. The missing books from 1748-1778 were burnt during the Gordon riots in 1780.

The book for 1719-1722 is in PRIS 4/1

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English and Latin
Physical description: 50 volume(s)

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