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Bibliography

The most important source is of course the rolls themselves. The Pipe Roll Society has published all the extant rolls up to 1224, plus the rolls for 1230 and 1242. It has also published other relevant material, such as receipt and issue rolls, and the Wardrobe accounts extracted from the pipe rolls of Henry III's reign. Many of these editions include useful introductions; those by B.E. Harris to the 1219 and 1220 rolls were the first to demonstrate that rolls included payments made after the nominal year end. All these editions contain a full transcription of the Latin text, either into record type for the earlier rolls, or into expanded Latin, with standardized punctuation and capitalization, for the later rolls. The Society also published in 2012 a new edition of the first roll, for 1130, giving both the Latin text and a facing English translation. Further rolls are being prepared for publication, including those for 1225 and 1259.

The unpublished pipe rolls can be consulted through the complete photographic record available online, on the Anglo-American Legal Tradition website:

http://aalt.law.uh.edu

This site also includes photographs of memoranda rolls and legal records.

That apart, relatively little has been published concerning the pipe rolls, and much of that is outdated. There is however a recent edition of the Dialogue: Emilie Amt and S.D. Church (eds.), Dialogus de Scaccario: the Dialogue of the Exchequer. Constitutio Domus Regis: Disposition of the King's Household (Oxford 2007). All accounts of the Exchequer and its works start from the Dialogue, although it should be remembered that it was written around 1180, and even the Exchequer changed its practices from time to time. There were several older editions - e.g. edited by Charles Johnson (1950) - giving much the same text, and with longer introductions which may be helpful as guides to Exchequer procedure.

There is a mass of information about the pipe rolls scattered within a long book written by an 18th-century antiquarian, who was also an Exchequer official at a time when pipe rolls were still being produced: Thomas Madox, The History and Antiquities of the Exchequer of the Kings of England (2nd edition, 1769, 2 vols., reprinted 1969).

Introduction to the study of the pipe rolls, Pipe Roll Society vol. III (1884). Very dated.

Reginald L. Poole, The Exchequer in the Twelfth Century (Oxford 1912). The classic account, expanding on the Dialogue in the light of the pipe rolls as then known, but restricted as its title indicates.

M.H. Mills, The pipe roll for 1295 Surrey membrane, Surrey Record Society No. XXI (1924). Much broader than you might expect - 90 pages of introduction and notes for 30 pages of text and translation - both a minute examination of one county's entries for a single year, and a detailed explanation of the audit and accounting process.

C.A.F. Meekings, 'The pipe roll order of 12 February 1270', published in Studies Presented to Sir Hilary Jenkinson, ed. J. Conway Davies (London 1957), reprinted in Meekings Studies in 13th century justice and administration (London 1981). Again, broader than its title, by another expert in the minutiae of medieval bureaucracy. An explanation of measures to remove useless entries from the rolls, and the reasons why they were necessary.

David Crook,'Pipe rolls', no. 38, in Short Guides to Records, ed. K. M. Thompson (Historical Association, 1997), which is useful but very brief, as its name implies.

For the twelfth century: Mark Hagger, 'Theory and practice in the making of 12th-century pipe rolls', in Records, Administration and Aristocratic Society in the Anglo-Norman Realm, ed. N.Vincent (Woodbridge, 2009), pp. 45-74.

There is very little about the thirteenth century pipe rolls, apart from a section in R. C. Stacey, Politics, Policy and Finance under Henry III, 1216-45 (Oxford, 1987), pp. 201-5, and Richard Cassidy, 'Recorda splendidissima: the use of pipe rolls in the thirteenth century', Historical Research, vol. 85, issue 227 (2012), pp. 1-12, doi:10.1111/j.1468-2281.2011.00583.x

John Sabapathy, Officers and Accountability in Medieval England 1170-1300 (Oxford 2014), chapter 3, considers the Exchequer audit procedure as a means of ensuring sheriffs' accountability to central government.

Ulla Kypta, ‘How to be an Exchequer clerk in the twelfth century: What the Dialogue of the Exchequer is really about’, History no. 355 (April 2018), 199-222. A convincing demonstration that the Dialogue’s description of pipe roll production is greatly different from what actually happened, as shown by a close study of the twelfth-century pipe rolls.

 

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