Catalogue description Exchequer: Lord Treasurer's Remembrancer: Memoranda Rolls

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Details of E 368
Reference: E 368
Title: Exchequer: Lord Treasurer's Remembrancer: Memoranda Rolls

Rolls recording memoranda made in the Exchequer. Each roll or set of rolls covers a year, consisting of four terms, and is divided into different sections. The contents of the two parallel series, one kept by the King's Remembrancer and the other by the Lord Treasurer's Remembrancer, reflect the differing functions of the two offices, which were defined by the Exchequer ordinances of 1323. From that time, the rolls of the Lord Treasurer's Remembrancer included the following 11 sections:

  • Adventus vicecomitum, recording the arrival of the sheriffs and other officials, such as escheators, with their proffers at Michaelmas and Easter
  • Dies dati vicecomitibus, dates of days assigned for the hearing of their accounts
  • Commissiones et littere patentes, mainly enrolments of grants of office or commitments of the custody of royal land by letters patent
  • Recorda, varied enrolments, mainly of decisions about liabilities for payments and general memoranda
  • Fines, manucapciones, redditus, affidaciones et visores, notes of fines, mainprises, renders, affidavits and viewers
  • Presentaciones, attornati, dies dati et respectus, presentations of officials, appointments of attorneys, days given for appearance, and respites from rendering account
  • Recogniciones, private recognisances of debt enrolled for a fee
  • Brevia irretornabilia, enrolments of writs not requiring a return, concerned with matters such as the provisioning of castles or the royal household, or the payment of wages
  • Brevia retornabilia, enrolments of writs which did require a return, intended to bring before the Exchequer a debt to the Crown, such as rents levied annually by the sheriffs or feudal reliefs
  • Status et visus compotorum, notes resulting from preliminary 'views' or final audit of accounts rendered by sheriffs or other officials

Until about 1300 the rolls also included pleadings in the Exchequer of Pleas,. Much of the later contents of the rolls, in the dominant Recorda or 'Common Business' section, concerned revenue proceedings in the Exchequer. From the 16th century the number of sections diminished, with ultimately the Recorda only remaining by the time the Exchequer ceased to be an accounting department in 1833.

Digital images of some of the records in this series are available through the Anglo-American Legal Tradition website. Please note that The National Archives is not responsible for this website or its content.

Date: 1217-1835
Related material:

The main means of reference to this series of memoranda rolls are a collection of repertory rols, some general and others relating to particular sections of the rolls. They give the name of the county, a brief note of the subject of the entry, and the rotulus number on which it is found in IND 1/6909-6935, 6993-6995, and 7016-7028. Indexes include Tayleure's IND 1/17043 and three volumes of notes by Thomas Madox (IND 1/17045-17047).


A parallel series of memoranda rolls are in E 159

Exchequer pleas are also in E 13

Registers of the enrollment of pleas are in E 388

Separated material:

The two earliest Exchequer memoranda rolls, from the reign of King John, are in E 370

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English and Latin
Physical description: 804 roll(s)
Publication note:

An outline of the development of the rolls is provided by J Conway Davies, 'The memoranda rolls of the Exchequer to 1307', in Studies presented to Sir Hilary Jenkinson (1957), pp 97-154 Also useful is J F Willard, 'The memoranda rolls and the remembrancers, 1282-1350', in Essays in Medieval History presented to T F Tout, ed A G Little and F M Powicke (1925), pp 215-29 See also D Crook, 'The early remembrancers of the Exchequer', Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, liii (1980), pp 11-23

Administrative / biographical background:

Memoranda began to be kept by the Exchequer from the 12th century, by order of the treasurer, so that particular action could be taken on an account. It is likely that they were considered ephemeral documents until the early years of the reign of Henry III (1216-1272).

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