Medieval Writing
Paleography Exercises
Private charter of Richard and Elizabeth Redmayn, of 1417 (British Library, Harleian Charter 112 C 30). All images by permission of the British Library.
This document is a private charter which involves the transfer of a parcel of land from Richard and Elizabeth Redmayn to William Gascoigne and William Scott. It is written in Latin, in a cursive document hand. There are two seals attached to the lower edge of the document with parchment tags. It is intriguing that despite the rather grandiose legalistic language of the charter, with multiple repetitions and "aforesaid"s, it does not really tell us very much. The portion of land is not accurately identified, nor is the feudal service due from it, nor is the lord to whom the service is due actually identified. Even at this date, when written legal process was well established, the technical details are still left to oral understanding.
Redmayne tomb The alabaster tomb of the grantors of the charter, Richard and Elizabeth Redmayne, lies in the redundant parish church of Harewood in Yorkshire.
Gascoigne tomb The tomb of one of the beneficiaries, William Gascoigne, lies in the same church. He is attired in the robes of a judge.
Ryther tomb The tomb of one of the witnesses, William de Ryther, is also present. It seems to have been a little neighbourhood affair.

| overview | seal | text | alphabet | abbreviations | structure | exercises |

| transcript | translation |

Click on each of the above to walk your way through the text. The transcript will appear in a separate window so that you can use it for reference at any time. These exercises are designed to guide you through the text, not test you, so you can cheat as much as you like.
Script sample for this example
Index of Exercises
Index of Scripts

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