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Manorial Records, 1678-[1906]

Reference Code: GBR/0269/DCAR/1/1/4

Scope and Contents

The HMC defines Manorial Records as: court rolls, surveys, maps, terriers, documents and books of every description relating to boundaries, wastes and customs or courts of a manor.
The Manorial Documents Register [MDR] also usually excludes individual copies of court rolls given to tenants as evidence of title. However, in the Estate Records group in Downing's Archive, surveys, rentals, maps and accounts etc are to be found in their own specific series. This manorial records series consists of court records and items dealing expressly with copyhold tenure. It also includes formal records [not correspondence] re fee farm rents and quit rents.


  • Creation: 1678-[1906]


Conditions Governing Access

From the Sub-Fonds:

Records are generally open, although some closure periods may apply for more recent records.

Biographical / Historical

From 1600 the Manor assumed a formal legal meaning. It is a unit of estate [but different from an estate]: an administrative unit with a court. The 15th and 16th centuries saw formalisation of manorial courts but they received competition from the parish in administrative matters and from JPs in judicial matters. Importance of manorial courts declined until the only thing they could do that other courts could not was administer copyhold on a day to day level. [Copyhold: customary tenure under Lord]. Copyhold tenure was abolished under the 1922 Property Act, and signalled final demise of the courts.


38 item(s) (38 pieces)

Language of Materials


Repository Details

Part of the Downing College Repository

Downing College Archive
Downing College
Cambridge Cambridgeshire CB2 1DQ United Kingdom
+44 (0)1223 762905