©National Archives

Anglo-Irish Exchequer table, in 15th-century manuscript.

This animated scene shows the Anglo-Irish Exchequer of the 15th-century which operated in very similar fashion to the English Exchequer. Reproduced from Facsimiles of National Manuscripts of Ireland (1879), it is taken from a manuscript known as the Red Book of the Exchequer, formerly held in the Public Record Office of Ireland. Three judges of the Exchequer court sit on the left hand side of the chequered table, after which the exchequer itself was named, with tallies and counters upon it representing sums of money. The Red Book itself is in the middle of the table next to a pouch containing writs and accounts. The sheriff, wearing a capacious hood, sits at the foot of the table, and on the right hand side suitors to the court vigorously argue their case, one shouting 'Chalange'. At the head of the table, the Clerk of the Pipe writes out a writ beginning Henricus dei gratia - Henry by the grace of God king, balancing it on his knee, with his foot on the table. Next to him, the Chief Remembrancer, holding an Exchequer roll, examines his pen.

Enlarge on linked site

See item in the collection's timeline