Catalogue description Special Collections: Parliament Rolls, Exchequer Series

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Details of SC 9
Reference: SC 9
Title: Special Collections: Parliament Rolls, Exchequer Series

Rolls recording proceedings before the King and Council in Parliament, including agenda, petitions, and process. They include Scottish, Irish, Gascon and Channel Islands petitions.

The collection is an artificial one, drawing together records transferred both from the Treasury of the Receipt of the Exchequer, including rolls formerly in the Treasury in the Tower; and records rediscovered in the nineteenth century among the documents then in the custody of the King's Remembrancer, with further additions recovered from unsorted miscellanea in 1958.

The documents include notes of cases remitted from inferior courts; transcripts of documents and pleadings connected with cases coming before Parliament and council, including pleadings in earlier parliaments; notes of decisions taken; enrolments of cases argued and decided in Parliament and before the Council; statutes and orders of various kinds; records of the grant of subsidies and taxes; enrolments of petitions and interim process on them; records of the attendance at Parliament and of the order of business; and notes relating to administrative routine, including the appointment of attorneys, manucaption, and the appointment of justices of gaol delivery and of oyer and terminer. The rolls are not a complete record of all the business and procedure of any single parliament.

Most of the rolls are annotated with a note of title and content, though some rolls, although titled as a record of a particular parliament, appear in practice to be an agenda for a subsequent parliament or council.

Date: 1289-1322
Related material:

Other rolls survive in:

C 65

A transcription of the rolls in this series may be found in C 153

E 175

See also the Special Collections, Ancient Petitions, in SC 8

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English

Exchequer, 1109-1880

Exchequer, Kings Remembrancer, 1150-1875

Physical description: 27 roll(s)
Custodial history: The rolls were formerly in the custody of the chamberlains of the Exchequer and of the King's Remembrancer's Office.
Publication note:

Most documents are printed in full in: Rotuli Parliamentorum; ut et Petitiones, et Placita in Parliamentaria, 7 vols (1769-1817). The text is not always accurate, however; Memoranda de Parliamento 25 Edward I, 1305, ed F W Maitland (Rolls Series, London 1893); Documents Illustrative of English History in the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries, selected from the Records of the Queen's Remembrancer of the Exchequer, ed H Cole (London, 1844); Rotuli Parliamentorum Anglie Hactenus Inediti, ed H G Richardson and G Sayles (Camden Society, Third Series, li, 1935); and H G Richardson and G Sayles, "The early records of the English Parliament, pt 3: The Exchequer Parliament Rolls and other documents" Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, vi (1928-1929) Certain rolls were transcribed between 1320 and 1322 into the volume known as the Vetus Codex (C 153/1). In some instances this provides a more complete version of the original text than that now surviving on the rolls. The transcript was printed asPlacita Parliamentorum, ed W Ryley (London, 1661).

Unpublished finding aids:

Special Collections: Parliament Rolls: Exchequer Series (formerly introductory note to SC 9)

Administrative / biographical background:

Regular enrolment of the proceedings of the Council in Parliament began with the assumption of clerical responsibility by the Chancery which, from the reign of Edward III, provided the Clerk of Parliament. Under Edward I and Edward II no one department had responsibility either for creation or storage of the rolls. Exceptional entries were included from time to time, including the enrolment of common petitions.

Parliament under Edward I was a solemn meeting of the King's Council, afforced according to need. Private petitions were presented to one or other of the receivers of petitions and forwarded, perhaps after vetting, to the auditors or triers. These dealt with the greater number of petitions out of hand. The remainder, difficult and doubtful cases, and matters affecting the King's interest, were dealt with by the Council or by a specially nominated tribunal or committee. From about 1290 receivers and auditors subdivided into three groups dealing with English, Irish and Gascon petitions. The petitory procedure was generally encouraged, providing a means for obtaining redress in cases in which the common law was unable to provide relief, and an opportunity to ask for grants of grace.

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