This page provides basic information on the royal Chancery and its clerks in the late middle ages by way of background for the c.130 biographies of Chancery clerks during the reign of Henry V (1413-22) in MLD. The biographical information has been taken from Malcolm Richardson, The English Chancery under Henry V, List and Index Society Publications 30 (Kew, 1999), but updated when possible.
This early 17th-century engraving by Wenceslaus Hollar of the west end of Westminster Hall show sessions of the Court of Chancery and King’s Bench on the raised dias. Chancery clerks gathered here as they did 200 years earlier. (Wikigallery, Creative Commons)
The Royal Chancery and Chancery Clerks in the Late Middle Ages
by Malcolm Richardson
The Royal Chancery and Chancery Clerks.
In any one year, London housed about one hundred twenty clerks of the royal Chancery in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, mostly in the Farringdon district Within and Without the eastern city walls. Now, as then, this is roughly the Holborn/Fleet Street area, as illustrated on the maps of the Common Law Inns. The clerks resided in various inns in the area and had their administrative headquarters at the Domus Conversorum, or House of [Jewish] Converts in the middle of Chancery Lane. The high-ranking clerks in their expensive furred robes must have been familiar figures to other London residents in the streets and on the river on their way to Westminster Hall, where their court was held.
The Chancery’s chief purpose in the fourteenth century was to issue documents affixed by the king’s Great Seal, the authenticating device by which all public documents became official. But since the documents encompassed virtually anything the law touched, the Chancery had its fingers in every pie. The Chancery clerks, technically the Chancellor’s staff, were involved in copying, drawing up, inspecting, and issuing the wide range of Chancery documents. The king might grant a pension or land at will, but nothing was really complete until the receiver had picked up his charter or letters patent at the Chancery. Nor could the king’s justice be obtained without a writ from the Chancery. Licenses to marry heiresses, rights of wardship, appointments of sheriffs, powers of attorney, legal wrangles over inheritances, military commissions, grazing rights, confiscations, acknowledgements of debt, loans to the king, inventories of the king’s jewels, agreements with foreign powers — all of these and much, much more had to pass through Chancery.
The Chancery clerks also served as clerks of Parliament and maintained Parliament’s official records. The Chancellor was usually a bishop and the daily work of the Chancery was actually administered by senior clerks who made themselves wealthy through pluralism (holding multiple church positions simultaneously), real estate speculation, and money-lending. Nevertheless, control of the Great Seal was central to both the Chancellor’s power and the ubiquity of the Chancery in the royal administration. The equity court, in which the Chancellor heard cases which did not quite fit into the jurisdiction of other royal courts, was growing but still small at the beginning of the Tudor period.
Chancery clerks were, with very few exceptions, members of the clergy in “minor orders,” that is, holding church offices which did not require administering sacraments and were below the priesthood. Throughout medieval Europe, it was the practice of kings, princes, cities, and other entities to draw administrative staff from the ranks of the literate and numerate clergy, who were rewarded for their services by being given church offices. These offices were usually minor: mostly prebendaries in the case of the Chancery clerks, but occasionally up to the level of archdeacon. Certain benefices were normally reserved for Chancery clerks, such as the priory church of Ipplepen, Devon, on the southern edge of Dartmoor. Even these positions were filled almost always in absentia. But since these bureaucrats were officially churchmen, the church paid the salaries, a nice arrangement for the ruler. This system, however, was breaking down by the end of the Middle Ages. Italian cities had begun training laymen for their bureaucracies, and the English royal Chancery began accepting more laymen during and after the reign of Richard II. Even then, these laymen were blocked from advancement through the ranks, and an all-clergy Chancery remained the ideal until at least the middle of the fifteenth century. Two notable positions could officially be filled by laymen because of their special job requirements, the Notary or Protonotory and Clerk(s) of the Crown. One or two of the Chancery clerks in the MLD biographies actively worked for specific bishops (notably the Masters Rowland and Thoralby) and a handful left bequests for one or more of their benefices, but most of them seem to have pocketed the money and never came within fifty miles of their prebend, vicaries, etc.
The Chancery Administrative Structure
The Chancery Administrative Structure remained stable for hundreds of years. Under the Chancellor were twelve Masters or Clerks of the First Form. One of these twelve was the Keeper of the Rolls, first among equals. He was normally assisted by two Preceptors or “Commanders,” Masters who decided the proper kind of writ to be drawn up. Then there were the Examiners (six at the time), who scrutinized documents made by lower-grade clerks and approved them for issue. Finally there was the Notary, a university graduate in Roman law who dealt mainly with mercantile law, diplomacy, and foreign affairs. The Notary was a specialist appointed from the outside, and he did not have to come up through the Chancery ranks.
Clerks of the Second Form, also twelve in number, had several special titles, notably the primary and secondary Clerks of the Crown and the Clerk of the Petty Bag. The Under-Clerk of Parliament, in practice the clerk for the Commons, was also in the second grade. Until about 1416 the Keeper of the Hanaper was a Clerk of the Second Form, although afterward he was always of the highest grade of clerk. “The Hanaper,” whose curious name seems to derive from the locked hamper which held sealed documents, was the financial office of the chancery. Its basic function was collecting fees from people picking up their writs and then disbursing those fees back to the crown.
Outside the holders of these offices, Clerks of the Second Form are difficult to distinguish. They are never referred to by rank and only occasionally by position, the Clerks of the Crown excepted. The final group is “Cursitors and everyone else.” The Cursitors were writing clerks, remembered today in London topography in Cursitor Street off Chancery Lane. The Chancery maintained a large body of under-clerks – nearly every Chancery official had two or three. For example, the Keeper had special sub-clerks working for him called (later) the Six Clerks, and the Notaries, who in practice had nothing to do with the daily administrative duties in the Chancery, had underclerks who drew up humdrum Chancery documents while their boss was otherwise occupied with diplomatic missions and the like.
Identifying Chancery clerks below the rank of Master is rarely easy. Official records tend to designate clerks in any royal office simply as “clerk.” To be included in the biographies in MLD, a clerk had to be: a) identified as such in an official document like the Close Rolls; b) named as such in the Ordinaciones cancellarie, orders for the reformation of certain chancery procedures in 1417; and/or c) recorded as an attestation, that is, when the clerk’s name was found at the foot of an official document as the initial authorizing official. These attestations are not signatures, per se, but only Chancery clerks could attest on Chancery documents or (as in most cases) deputize sub-clerks to enter their names. Since all Chancery documents were inspected for accuracy and authenticity, the attestations are the best proofs we have.
The Income and Syndicates of Chancery Clerks.
As many of their biographies show, Chancery clerks were busy and acquisitive. The lines between public and private business were not so finely drawn as today, and the Chancery clerks found many ways related to their duties to make money for themselves aside from their church income. Sometimes the Chancery paid them extra for supervising special writing projects, like treaties. Private citizens paid them to enter deeds, bonds, and other legal matters on the backs of the official rolls. On a large number of occasions, they received fees for giving surety for private citizens to meet court appearances and other obligations (mainperning). In large numbers of documents the phrase “by mainprise of” is followed by a long list of Chancery clerks. They also represented people in the Chancery court, but although they were called “attorneys” in the records, they were not licensed lawyers in the modern sense and dealt only with very technical issues, like the correct wording of writs. Chancery clerks were convenient mainpernors and attorneys since they were likely working in Westminster Hall anyway.
As surviving accounts show, all clerks got “tips” of some kind, down to the person who heated the wax for affixing the seals. Most lucrative for Chancery clerks, given their access to a huge flow of legal documents about property, was their ability to act as what we would today call “inside traders.” Sometimes a group of usually senior clerks were short-term trustees (known as “feoffees-to-use”) for prominent landholders until subsequent property disposition was made under the complex medieval property laws. Sometimes the king would take over estates and turn its lands and revenues over to Chancery clerks and others for administration, as in 1411 when the bankrupt Priory of Barnwell was seized by Henry IV and turned over to Chancery clerks John Wakering and John Rome, the king’s brother Thomas Beaufort, and Justice of the Common Pleas John Cokayn (CCR 1408-13, 299). Henry IV granted John Chitterne, on the mainprise of James Billingford and John Cliderowe, all three Chancery clerks, custody of the lands of Sir Thomas Romesey in Hampshire (CPR, 1399-1401, 450). Sometimes they directly invested in property in the far corners of the country, or held rental property, but the lower ranks especially invested in property in the Farringdon area. In 1407 three Chancery clerks and others got a quitclaim for the brewhouses “The Vine” and “Clement’s” and other properties on the Strand next to the church of St Clement Danes, about a five-minute walk from the Domus Conversorum (CCR, 1405‑09, p. 268). Between 1350 and 1417, Chancery clerks also leased or managed a number of legal inns in the Holborn area. Managing an inn would have put them in frequent contact with London merchants and artisans of all sorts.
The English Chancery under Henry V shows how Chancery clerks in Henry V’s time organized themselves into groups mostly based on their place of birth or from which bishopric they received their education. These groupings seem to have had a vague relationship to some of their Chancery duties, but the records clearly show these “syndicates” working together for personal business, mainly money-lending, mainperning and real estate investment. Fourteenth-century syndicates were mainly from Yorkshire, but during the reign of Richard II, Norfolk and other regions became more strongly represented as ambitious clerks pushed themselves forward. While in some other royal offices clerks’ official duties were organized regionally, these Chancery syndicates seem to have been unofficial. They may be traced by entries in various Calendars and document classifications showing groups of clerks working together for feed work. Sometimes this work directly connects to the syndicate’s geographic region, but more often not.
Chancery Clerks and English Literature.
Scholars have debated the role of clerks and scribes in the literary life of London and England in recent years. Strong claims were made by Linne Mooney and her colleagues (2013) that city and royal clerks were active participants in the transmission of English-language literary texts, both in the role of copyists and as “editors” of major texts. An equally strong rebuttal was given by Lawrence Warner (2018). Biographies given here of Chancery clerks offer little indication of strong literary interests or indeed of interest in English-language reading. Aside from the ownership by the minor clerk Richard Sothworth of the earliest-known manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, books owned by the Chancery clerks (as revealed in their wills, anyway) tend to be legal and religious texts in Latin or French.
Other claims have been made that the Chancery helped standardize or regularize English spelling through developing “Chancery English” or “Chancery Standard,” a non-regional written dialect that is the closest source of modern Standard Written English (Fisher, Richardson, and Fisher). The narrative is plausible: English spelling was fairly regularized or at least non-regional by 1500, and the Chancery was a national administrative unit that needed a standardized English spelling system, since written English was being used more often in official documents after about 1415. Consequently, the Chancery clerks had a vested interest in developing an English spelling system that literally would stand up in court and be as regular as Latin or French. Unfortunately, the evidence is against this compact narrative. The historical linguist Michael Benskin (2004) effectively demolished the story, following several years of doubts by other linguists. Among the Chancery clerks noted in this database, there are few examples of usage of English and, as Benskin observed, no evidence of any substantial interest in the English language in the Chancery staff itself, which remained stubbornly Latin and French well into the Tudor period. Although the London guilds had happily moved into keeping important records in English between about 1420 and mid-century, the royal administration stood firm linguistically.
- Baker, J. H. The Inns of Chancery, 1340-1640, Selden Society Supplementary Series, no. 19. London, 2017, 4-5.
- Benskin, Michael. Chancery Standard,” in New Perspectives on English Historical Lingusitics. Volume II: Lexis and Transmission, ed. C. Kay, C. Hough and I. Wotherspoon. 1-39. Glasgow, 2004.
- CCR: Calendar of the Close Rolls Preserved in the Public Record Office, 1227-1509. London, H.M. Stationery Office, 1896-1963.
- CPR: Calendar of the Patent Rolls Preserved in the Public Record Office, 1216-1509. London: H.M. Stationery Office, 1891-1916.
- Fisher, John H., Malcolm Richardson, and Jane L. Fisher. An Anthology of Chancery English. Knoxville: University of Tennessee, 1984.
- Mooney, Linne and Estelle Stubbs, Scribes and the City: London Guildhall Clerks and the Dissemination of Middle English Literature, 1375-1425. York: York Medieval Press and Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer, 2013.
- Ordinaciones cancellarie, BL MS 189, printed in whole or part in Herman Cohen, A History of the English Bar and Attornatus to 1450. Original edition, London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1929; reprint, London: Wildy and Sons Ltd., 1967, 439-45; G.W. Sanders, Orders in Chancery (1845), i. 1-7; B[ertie] Wilkinson, The Chancery under Edward III, Publications of the University of Manchester, 189. Manchester: University Press, 1929.
- Richardson, Malcolm. The Medieval Chancery under Henry V, List and Index Society, Special Series, 30. Kew: List and Index Society, 1999.
- Warner, Lawrence. Chaucer’s Scribes: London Textual Production, 1384-1432. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018.
- B[ertie] Wilkinson, The Chancery under Edward III. Publications of the University of Manchester, 189.Manchester: University Press, 1929.
- Williams, Elijah. Early Holborn and the Legal Quarter of London. 2 vols. London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1927.
The Biographies of and Sources for the Clerks in MLD.
The sources are in most cases not terribly revealing about relationships with Londoners and the city and give only the outline of a bureaucratic career. Records of their interactions with Londoners are mostly restricted to financial and real estate transactions. These records are myriad. A close study of them would reveal the exact depths of the business partnerships between Londoners and Chancery clerks. Still, we have almost none of the illuminating moments of London life that appear in the guild and city records, and the few examples are usually couched in stultifying bureaucrat language. Occasionally a few vignettes appear fleetingly in the records, such as when we find that young Chancery clerks in the fourteenth century liked to play games in a field behind what is now Lincoln’s Inn, and a malicious citizen, Roger Legat, laid traps for them in revenge for their boisterousness (CCR 1374-77, 210). We even have a report that two Chancery clerks were killed by four apprentices to the law in 1339 and died at in their lodging at the old Lincoln’s Inn on Holborn (Williams, 2, s. 1081). While such recorded moments when the clerks become a part of London life are regrettably few, the presence of the Chancery clerks – and their brethren in the Privy Seal, King’s Bench, etc. – in London must have been part of the mental topography of all residents of the city.
The Sources used to identify the clerks of Henry V relied in part on the Ordinaciones Cancellarie, in BL Hargrave MS 189, noted numerous times in the biographies. This document is a much later copy of Chancery regulations and addendum. The ordinances were probably first proposed in the late 1380s but the version in the Hargrave MS dates from 1417 and was likely the only one actually enforced. The document names a number of Henry V’s clerks and so is an invaluable resource both for Chancery history and in the history of the Inns of Chancery. Hargrave MS 189 is not medieval, however, but is a copy of one of the Cotton Manuscripts from perhaps as late as the eighteenth century. The later copyist garbled the names of the clerks when copying from an earlier version, which itself may not have been from the earlier fifteenth century, and the copyist has a great deal of trouble with some of the clerks’ names. For a discussion of the orders, see J. H. Baker, The Inns of Chancery (pp. 4-5).
Primary sources, almost all from TNA, are noted by their class and file number. In order to be identified as a Chancery clerk in Richardson’s book and the MLD biographies, it was critical that a clerk attest during the reign of Henry V, the focus of the 1999 original study. If there was no clerk’s attestation during that reign, he was not counted as a Chancery clerk, aside from a few likely guesses for the lower ranks. Clerks’ attestations are spread over a wide variety of classifications, as shown in the CFCC (see below). For Henry V’s reign the most useful files for attestations were C 219, Parliamentary Writs and Returns, and C 237, Bails on Special Pardon. An attestation is not necessarily a signature, per se, since almost all clerks had sub-clerks. This practice is detailed in the Ordinaciones cancellarie and was likely even more widespread than outlined in that document. However, an attestation is our best evidence than an individual was indeed a Chancery clerk at the date of the attestation, and in residence in London. Attestations done in other locales seem to have always been noted. Secondary sources used only once are given full reference within the text.
Printed sources listed below indicate the sources used in Richardson’s 1999 book and thus in the MLD biographies, and they should not be taken to represent the latest editions or printings. Research for the book was done in the 1980s and 90s and reflects sources and methods of indexing available then. A number of the items in the bibliography are now online, including most of the national calendars, and some sources have been completely reedited, notably The Parliament Rolls of Medieval England. Additionally, many of the manuscript sources are now available for download.
- Kew, The National Archives
- CFCC, Card File of Chancery Clerks, an unfinished, unpublished index of Chancery Clerks on index cards and not catalogued by TNA. It contains cards on each clerk noted with references to original documents searched by members of the TNA staff, probably in the 1960 and 70s
- C1: Chancery Proceedings.
- C67: Pardon Rolls.
- C219 Parliamentary Writs and Returns.
- C237: Bails on Special Pardons
- E101/213-15: Hanaper Accounts
- E101/251: Records of the House of Converts
- E101/321/13/3: Particulars of the account of John Hovyngham of journeys to the duke of Burgundy
- E364: Foreign Accounts, Hanaper Accounts
- E403: Issue Rolls
- KB145/4/8/1: Court of King’s Bench: Crown and Plea Sides: Recorda and Precepta Recordorum Files, 8 Henry IV
- PL14: Palatinate of Lancaster Miscellaneous Accounts,
- SC1: Ancient Correspondence
London, The British Library
- Hargrave MS 189: A Collection of the Rules and Orders of and relating to the High Court of Chancery, from the Reign of King John to the Death of King George the First.
Abbreviations Used in the MLD Biographies.
The following Abbreviations for printed sources were used in Richardson’s biographies of Chancery Clerks, 1413-22.
|An Anthology of Chancery English||Anthology of Chancery English. Ed. John H. Fisher, Malcolm Richardson, Jane Fisher. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 1984.|
|Aston, Arundel||Margaret Aston, Thomas Arundel: A Study of Church Life in the Reign of Richard II. Oxford: University Press, 1967.|
|Baildon, Select Cases in Chancery.||Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364 to 1471. Ed. William Paley Baildon. Selden Society, No. 10. London, 1896.|
|Baldwin, “Chancery of the Duchy of Lancaster||James Fosdick Baldwin, “The Chancery of the Duchy of Lancaster,” Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, 4(1926‑27), 129‑43.|
|BRUC||Biographical Register of the University of Cambridge to 1500. Ed. A.B. Emden. Cambridge: University Press, 1968.|
|BRUO||Biographical Register of the University of Oxford to A.D. 1500. 4 Vol. Ed. A.B. Emden. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1957‑59.|
|CCR||Calendar of the Close Rolls Preserved in the Public Record Office, 1227-1509. London, H.M. Stationery Office, 1896-1963.|
|CCCC||Card File of Chancery Clerks, an unfinished, unpublished index of Chancery Clerks on index cards and not catalogued by TNA. It contains cards on each clerk noted with references to original documents searched by members of the TNA staff.|
|CFR||Calendar of the Fine Rolls Preserved in the Public Record Office. Henry IV, Henry V, Henry VI. London: H.M.S.O., 1931-39.|
|Chambers and Daunt||R.W. Chambers and Marjorie Daunt. A Book of London English. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1931.|
|Chaplais, Eng. Hist. Docs.||Pierre Chaplais, ed. Diplomatic Documents Preserved in the Public Record Office, I (1101‑1272). London: HMSO, 1964.|
|CIM||Calendar of Inquisitions Miscellaneous, vol. 7. London, 1969.|
|CPR||Calendar of the Patent Rolls Preserved in the Public Record Office, 1216-1509. London: H.M. Stationery Office, 1891-1916.|
|CPL||Calendar of Entries in the Papal Registers: Papal Letters, 1362-1404, 1398-1404, 1404-15, 1417-31, 1427-47,|
|CSR||Calendar of Signet Letters of Henry IV and Henry V (1399-1422). Ed. J. L. Kirby. London: HMSO, 1978.|
|Early Lincoln Wills||Early Lincoln Wills. Ed. Alfred Gibbons. Lincoln, 1888.|
|Early Reg. of Writs||Early Registers of Writs. Ed. Elsa de Haas, Selden Society, 87. London: Selden Society, 1970.|
|ECP||Index of Persons Named in Early Chancery Proceedings. Ed. C.A. Walmisley, Harleian Society, 78‑79. 2 vols, London: Harleian Society, 1927‑28.|
|Feudal Aids||Inquisitions and Assessments Relating to Feudal Aids. 6 vols., London: HMSO, 1899‑1920.|
|Ellis, Original Letters||Original Letters Illustrative of English History. Ed. Henry Ellis. 3 Series. 11 vols. 1824‑46; rpt. London: Dawsons of Pall Mall, 1969.|
|Foss, Judges||Edward Foss. The Judges of England. 9 vols. 1848‑64; rpt. New York: AMS Press, 1966.|
|Index of Wills Proved . . . at Norwich||Index of Wills Proved in the Consistory Court of Norwich, etc., 1370‑1550. Ed. M.A. Farrow. 2 vols., Norfolk Record Society, 1943.|
|Gordon-Kelter||Janice Gordon-Kelter. The Royal Clerks: Career Patterns in the Chancery and Privy Seal. Ph.D. dissertation, CUNY, 1988.|
|Grands Roles Eschequiers de Normandie||Grands Roles des Echiquiers de Normandie, Societe des Antiquaires de Normandie: Memoires, 2nd ser., No. 5 Paris, 1845.|
|A History of Yorkminster||A History of Yorkminster. Ed. G. E. Aylmer and Reginald Cant. Oxford: UP, 1977.|
|Hennessy||George Hennessy. Novum Repertorium Ecclesiasticum Parochiale Londinese. London, 1898.|
|King, Records||H.C. King, Records and Documents Concerning Serjeants’ Inn, Fleet Street. London: Richard Flint, 1922.|
|LaBarge, Henry V||Margaret Wade LaBarge. Henry V: The Cautious Conqueror. London: Secker and Warburg, 1976.|
|List of AC||List of Ancient Correspondence. Lists and Indexes, no. 15. PRO/TNA.|
|LeNeve||LeNeve, John. Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae, 1300‑1541. 12 vols., London, 1962‑67.|
|Mathew||Gervase Mathew, The Court of Richard II (New York: W.W. Norton, 1968.|
|Myers, “Parliamentary Petitions||A[lec] R. Myers. “Parliamentary Petitions in the Fifteenth Century,” English Historical Review, 52 (1937): 385‑404, 590‑613.|
|North Country Wills||North Country Wills, ed. J. Challenor Smith, Surtees Society. 116, 121. 2 vols.. London: Surtees Society, 1908, 1912.|
|Otway‑Ruthven, King’s Secretary||Jocelyn Otway‑Ruthven. The King’s Secretary and the Signet Office in the XV Century. Cambridge: University Press, 1939.|
|Parliament and Politics||John Roskell, Parliament and Politics in Late Medieval England. 3 vols, The Hambledon Press, 1982-2005.|
|Pollard, “The Mediaeval Under‑Clerks of Parliament”||A. F. Pollard. “The Mediaeval Under‑Clerks of Parliament.” Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, 16 (1938): 65‑ 87.|
|Pollard, “Receivers of Petitions.”||Pollard, A. F. “Receivers of Petitions and Clerks of Parliament.” English Historical Review, 57 (1942): 202‑26.|
|PPC||Proceedings and Ordinances of the Privy Council of England. Ed. Sir Harris Nicolas. 7 vols., London, 1834.|
|Pronay, “The Chancellor”||Nicholas Pronay. “The Chancellor, the Chancery, and the Council at the End of the Fifteenth Century,” in British Government and Administrative Studies Presented to S.B. Chrimes. Ed. H. Hearder and H. R. Loyn. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1974.|
|Pronay,”The Hanaper”||Nicholas Pronay. “The Hanaper Under the Lancastrian Kings,” Proceedings of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society 12 (June 1966‑Aug. 1967): 73‑86.|
|Reg. Chichele||Register of Henry Chichele, Archbishop of Canterbury. Ed. E.F. Jacob, Canterbury and York Society, 42, 45‑47. 4 vols., Oxford: University Press, 1937‑47.|
|Reg. Bubwith||Register of Nicholas Bubwith, Bishop of Bath and Wells/ Ed. T.S. Holmes, Somerset Record Society, 29, 30. 2 vols., London, 1913‑14.|
|Reg. Fordham||“Register of Bishop John de Fordham.” Ely Diocesan Remembrancer (April/May 1897‑May/June 1902).|
|Reg. Hallam||Register of Robert Hallum, Bishop of Salisbury. Ed. Joyce M. Horne, Canterbury and York Society, 72. Torquay: Devonshire Press, 1942.|
|Reg. Lacy.[Hingeston]||Register of Edmund Lacy, Bishop of Exeter (A.D. 1420-1455. Ed. F.C. Hingeston-Randolph . 2 vols., London: G. Bell, 1909-15.|
|Reg. Langley||Register of Thomas Langley, Bishop of Durham, 1406‑37. Ed. R.L. Storey, Surtees Society, 164, 166, 169‑70, 182. 6 vols. Durham: Surtees Society, 1956‑70.|
|Reg. Repingdon||Register of Bishop Philip Repingdon, 1405‑1419. Ed. Margaret Archer, Lincoln Record Society, Nos. 57, 58, 74. Hereford: LRS, 1963‑82.|
|Reg. Stafford||Register of John Stafford, Bishop of Bath and Wells, 1425‑ 1443, Ed. Thomas Scott Holmes, Somerset Record Society, 31, 32. 2 vols., 1915‑16.|
|Roskell, Commons||Roskell, J[ohn]. The Commons in the Parliament of 1422. Manchester: University Press, 1954.|
|Rot. Norm.||Rotuli Normanniae in Turri Londinensi Asservati. Ed. T.D. Hardy. London, 1835.|
|RP||Rotuli Parliamentorum. 6 vols., London, 1767‑77. Now re-edited, the records are available on British History Online as The Parliament Rolls of Medieval England|
|Select Cases in Chancery||Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364 to 1471. Ed. William Paley Baildon, Selden Society, 10. London, 1896.|
|Select Cases in K.B||Select Cases in the Court of King’s Bench Under Richard II, Henry IV, and Henry V. Ed. G.O. Sayles, Selden Society, 88. London: Bernard Quaritch, 1971.|
|Smith, “Some Trends”||Charles W. Smith. “Some Trends in the English Royal Chancery: 1377-1483.” Medieval Prosopography, 6.1 (Spring 1985): 69-94.|
|Somerset Medieval Wills||Somerset Medieval Wills, 1383‑1500. Ed. F.W. Weaver, Somerset Record Society, 16. London, 1901.|
|Somerville, Duchy of Lancaster||Robert Somerville. History of the Duchy of Lancaster, vol. 1. London: Chancellor and Council of the Duchy of Lancaster, 1953.|
|Storey,”Gentleman-Bureaucrats”||R. L. Storey. “Gentlemen‑Bureaucrats,” in Profession, Vocation, and Culture in Later Medieval England, Ed. Cecil H. Clough. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 1982.|
|Storey, Langley||R. L., Storey. Thomas Langley and the Bishopric of Durham, 1406‑ 1437. London: Church Historical Society, 1961.|
|Test. Ebor.||Testamenta Eboracensia: A Selection of Wills from the Registry at York, Surtees Society, 45(vol. 3), 53 (vol. 4). Durham: 1865, 1869.|
|Tout, Chapters||Tout, T[homas] F[rederick]. Chapters in the Administrative History of Mediaeval England. 6 vols, 1920‑33; rpt., New York, 1967.|
|Tout, “Household”||Tout, T. F. [Thomas Frederick]. “The Household of the Chancery and its Disintegration,” in Essays in History Presented to Reginald Lane Poole. Ed. H.W.C. Davis. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1927.|
|Wilkinson, Edward III||Wilkinson, Bertie. The Chancery under Edward III, Manchester: University Press, 1929.|
|Williams, Early Holborn||Williams, Elijah. Early Holborn and the Legal Quarter of London (2 vols., London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1927.|
|Wylie, Henry V||James Hamilton Wylie and W.T. Waugh, The Reign of Henry V. 3 vols., Cambridge: University Press, 1929.|