Ramsey Abbey: Transcript of cartulary

Scope and Content

A transcript of Rawlinson MS B.333, a cartulary of Ramsey Abbey, then in the possession of the Bodleian Library, but owned in the early seventeenth century by Sir Henry Spelman. The transcript is followed by a copy of the cartulary of Aylesford Priory (p. 495) and a copy of the Carta de Boxley (p. 537). The later transcripts were probably bound into the volume with the Ramsey Abbey cartulary while in the possession of Sir Thomas Phillipps. The volume contains 558 numbered pages, some of which are blank, with illuminated end-pieces of unknown origin. There is a note at the front, March 1973, describing the volume's contents and provenance.

Administrative / Biographical History

Ramsey Abbey, Huntingdonshire, was founded as a Benedictine monastery in 969 by the Saxon noble Ailwine. The abbey became one of the richest and most powerful in the country, but was dissolved in 1539, and passed into the possession of Sir Richard Williams (later Cromwell), whose family subsequently knocked down many of the buildings and sold the stone. The only parts of the abbey to survive today are the gatehouse and chapel, the latter of which forms part of Ramsey Grammar School.

Access Information

Open for consultation by holders of a Reader's Ticket valid for the Manuscripts Reading Room.

Acquisition Information

Deposited by the governors of the Abbey School, Ramsey, Huntingdonshire, 1973.

Other Finding Aids


Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives.

Custodial History

The Ramsey transcript was made for the antiquary Sir Roger Twysden (1597-1672). It later passed into the hands of Richard Gough, and was bought at auction by Richard Heber in 1810. It was purchased by Sir Thomas Phillipps in 1836, becoming MS 8130 in his library. In 1935 the volume was sold at auction to F.T. Allen, Esq., of Ramsey Grammar School, Huntingdonshire, whose widow gave it to the governors of the school in 1963.