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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: March 2021

The Cambridge Hundred Rolls


This volume provides a translation from the original of the Hundred Rolls for Cambridge, TNA SC5/CAMBS/TOWER/1, Parts 1–3 and Barnwell SC5/CAMBS/TOWER/2. Each part corresponds to a particular roll. The rolls are in reasonably good condition, although some of the text is darkened and a few small portions of text (indicated in the translation by a row of dots) are missing.

The transcriptions from which the translation was made were checked against the Record Commission edition, with the exception of Cambridge part 3, which was not available to the Commission. The sequencing of the responses to the enquiry makes it clear that part 3 actually follows part 1 and precedes part 2. However, we have retained the sequence used by TNA to avoid confusion and to maintain correspondence with the Record Commission edition. The fact that it was the middle roll rather than the final roll that was missing probably explains why the omission was not recognized until fairly recently.

Each item (or paragraph) has been given a reference number. The use of reference numbers simplifies the referencing of the rolls in the main text of the book, and it should be of value to future researchers. Some numbers are prefaced by a letter. No letter signifies an individual property or a pair of linked properties (e.g. a messuage with land attached, or a pair of adjacent messuages). A preface R indicates a stream of rental income; P indicates a portfolio of properties where only the total rent is given and individual rents are difficult to impute; A indicates that there is no information on either location or rent; and F indicates contextual information that is not directly relevant to specific properties. Numbering is sequential within each category. All items prefaced R, P and A are excluded from the regression analysis of rents in Chapter 2 ‘Dynamics of the Property Market’ in Compassionate Capitalism: Business and Community in Medieval England; they are examined elsewhere in the main text. For items with no letter the reference number corresponds to a row in an Excel spreadsheet of rental payments; because the Excel spreadsheet has headings in row 1, the numbering begins at 2.

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