Catalogue description Exchequer: Augmentation Office: Ancient Deeds, Series B

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Details of E 326
Reference: E 326
Title: Exchequer: Augmentation Office: Ancient Deeds, Series B

This collection, consisting chiefly of conveyances and other evidences of title, forms the greater part of some 20,000 deeds acquired by the Crown from private and institutional hands and held by the Augmentation Office until removal to Chancery Lane in 1856-7.

For the most part the deeds represent the estate archives taken into the custody of the Court of Augmentations, the Court of General Surveyors, and the latter's predecessors, the Office of General Surveyors and the K king's Chamber. These archives had come into the possession of the Crown along with the estates acquired variously through forfeiture, purchase, exchange, wardship and, above all, through the dissolution of religious houses, the administration of whose properties was the main task of the Courts of Augmentations.

More than 13,500 of the deeds held by the Augmentation Office now make up this series.

Among the estate archives which can be identified within the series are those of numerous suppressed religious houses, including the priories of Breamore, Canons Ashby, Langley, Stamford and the London Charterhouse, and the abbeys of Bordesley, Quarr, Ramsey and Syon. Lay estates represented in the series include those of the earl of Warwick (1428-1471), the duke of Somerset (c.1506-1552) and Sir Thomas Wyatt (?1521-1554).

Date: c1200-1592

The collection has lost nearly all trace of any useful arrangement, perhaps from an early stage, given that the Court of Augmentations opted for an administrative system based on the county rather than the estate. Sequences of pieces relating to property in particular counties (even in particular localities) are numerous but entirely unpredictable.

Separated material:

The remainder of the original collection has been divided, according to size, condition of the seals, publication, and date, among the four succeeding series:

E 327

E 328

E 329

E 330

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English, French and Latin
Physical description: 13677 parchment membranes
Unpublished finding aids:

Pieces 4233-13676 are calendared and indexed in a typescript list in three volumes.

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