Part 1: Preface

Pages vii-viii

The Bede Roll of the Fraternity of St Nicholas. Originally published by London Record Society, London, 2004.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by London Record Society. All rights reserved.



The editing of the Bede Roll could not have been undertaken without help from a wide range of scholars and archivists who have placed their knowledge at our disposal. Although it is impossible to acknowledge all the help we have received, we are particularly indebted to Professor Caroline Barron, who read and commented on a draft of our introduction and provided assistance on matters too numerous to mention; Dr Clive Burgess who generously allowed us to consult his edition of the churchwardens' accounts of St Andrew Hubbard prior to publication; Barbara Harvey, who provided invaluable information about the monks of Westminster Abbey who were members of the Fraternity of St Nicholas; Professor Andrew Wathey for references to members of the Chapel Royal; Dr Roger Bowers, Dr Virginia Davis, Graham Dawson, Dr Fiona Kisby, Dr Elizabeth New, Dr David Skinner, Dr Anne Sutton, Dr Penny Tucker and Dr Magnus Williamson who made their unpublished or partly published research available to us.

Amongst archivists and librarians, Stephen Freeth, Keeper of Manuscripts at Guildhall Library, and his staff have shown remarkable patience in meeting our varied requests over several years. We are also grateful to John Draisey (Devon Record Office), Anna Greening (All Hallows by the Tower), Dr Richard Mortimer and Dr Tony Trowles (Westminster Abbey Muniment Room and Library), Robin Myers (The Stationers' Company), Dr Richard Palmer (Lambeth Palace Library), James Sewell (Corporation of London Records Office), Dr Eileen Scarff (St George's Chapel Archives and Chapter Library, Windsor), Dr Michael Stansfield and Cressida Annesley (Canterbury Cathedral Archives) and David Wickham (The Clothworkers Company). Dr Christopher Kitching and other colleagues at the Historical Manuscripts Commission have provided much help and support, as have successive Masters of the Worshipful Company of Parish Clerks and the Company's Clerk, Brian Coombes. Other Brethren of the Company have shown a keen interest in the project, even when it must have seemed interminable.

Most of all, we owe a great deal to our General Editors, Dr Stephen O'Connor, who has seen these volumes through the press, and Dr Vanessa Harding. Both have been most constructive in their criticism and consistently forbearing as we have sought to reduce the more disordered parts of the Bede Roll to some kind of logical order. Any shortcomings remain ours alone.

Without financial support from a number of sources, the Bede Roll could not have been published. We gratefully acknowledge the generous assistance of the Worshipful Company of Parish Clerks, which first pledged its support for the editing of this most remarkable and distinctive survival from its early history; the Worshipful Companies of Clothworkers, Drapers, Fishmongers, Haberdashers and Vintners; and the Marc Fitch Fund.

Finally we take this opportunity to dedicate our edition of the Bede Roll to the Parish Clerks' Company. May it flourish, root and branch, for ever.