Accounts of Steward, kitchen, cook and bakehouse,etc., 1479 - 1946
Scope and Contents
The stewards' accounts are the internal accounts of the funds administered by the 'Senescallus' who was chosen annually from among the Fellows. The accounting year ran from the Friday preceding the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary (8 September) and may have been the traditional date inherited from the Gild of St Mary. At the Audit the outgoing steward assessed and accounted for stock in hand as well as for cash held by the various college officers before handing over to his successor. The new account began with payments to Master and Fellows of their basic 'portions' from the foundation endowments, supplemented by named benefactions (e.g. Barbour, Cosin, Botwryght, Kent in 1516). Then followed the weeky accounting for such items as fuel, stock-fish, salt, mustard, and herbs (greens), as well as the cost of 'commons' for members of the college in residence on the foundation. At the end of each week there are usually 'exceedings', which it was the function of the steward to record, not to justify. To meet his running costs, cash was handed over about every six weeks, as noted on the account.
The stewards' accounts for the period of Thomas Cosyn's mastership (1488-1515) have not been preserved. They resume, in the traditional form, with the mastership of Peter Nobys in 1517 (fo. 46).
From the account from 1545/6 onward, it is noted who had which room in the Old Court, and the presence of pensioners and 'pupils' can be traced in more detail, but this practice lapses in 1569/70 when it is merely noted that all rooms in the Old Court are occupied by fellows and scholars.
Robert Sayer, bursar from 1573 to 1575, asserted (CCCC02/M/18/6) that before Mr Aldrich's time (1570-73) one man supplied the office of the steward of lands and steward of commons, and in Mr Aldrich's time by decree those offices were distinct, and two did supply them, and after his time thei were distincte til the master kept the commons'. The assertion was clearly doubted by Robert Norgate, who writes in the margin: 'Show the decree, or let it be testified by any man's oath.'
Many of the records in this section are, in fact, bursar's records, but it has seemed useful to keep records of domestic consumption in a single group.
- 1479 - 1946
Language of Materials
Finding aid date