The formule of the earlier summonses are extremely varied both in the reasons given for their issue and in the court in which the defendant was to appear. In this they reflect the gradual separation of the chancellor's position as a member and servant of the council dealing equitably with petitions from that of being head of the Chancery court of equity.
Early sub pena writs were issued either upon a petition to the king or a petition addressed to the chancellor personally, the latter becoming the standard form for all bills in later times.
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