Canonum De Ius Rex
Canons of Sovereign Law

one heaven iconII.   Sovereign

2.10 Anglo-Saxon Law Form

Article 122 - Maner Role (Manor Roll)

Canon 6395 (link)

 
Maner Role, also known as Manor Rolls and Manor Court Rolls is a system first introduced under the Carolingians in the 8th Century whereby every Baron of a manor was required to keep and maintain certain key records on separate continuous linen rolls including tenants and grants, inflow and outflow of property and monies and records of the settlement of disputes and crimes.

Canon 6396 (link)


The word manere comes from Latin meaning “to possess and abide (by agreement)” as well as ralle meaning “performed by”. Hence the literal and original meaning of Maner Role (Manor Roll) was “a list of possessions and agreements by performance (surety)”.

Canon 6397 (link)

The idea of the continuous linen rolls held by the manor is similar to the Scriptura rules of a regional cancellocum whereby the original title was the entry on the scrolls, while copies would then be extracted and handed to tenants, those given grants or reports to the church, lord (marches) or sovereign. The manor hall, or manorum therefore acted as a cancellocum of the estate.

Canon 6398 (link)

The manor tenant roll since the 8th Century CE, was the primary record of title of tenancy, privilege and grant within the boundaries of the manor until the eventual centralization of land title records in the 19th Century. As a general rule, manor tenant rolls recorded.

(i) The type of tenancy beginning with Tenens in Communis (Tenancy in Common), Tenens ad vitam (Tenant for Life), Tenens ad annum (Tenant for Years) or Tenens ad voluntate (Tenant at Will) and later changing to incorporate other various types of tenancy invented according to Venetian - Roman Law, then Feudal - Vassal Law, then Commonwealth Law; and

(ii) The name of the tenant, any service he was to render for certain privileges or tenancy type and the amount of rent due; and

(iii) Records of the payment of rent or amounts owed in debt of rent.

Canon 6399 (link)

The manor court roll since the 8th Century CE, was the primary record of dispute resolution and penalties issued against or in favor of tenants of the manor until the creation of the quarter sessions courts (four (4) times per year) and monthly petty sessions courts by statute from the beginning of the 18th Century. Some manors continued to function as courts until the 19th Century, particularly for tenants in tail.