|Content Description||Pw V 94/1 is one of only 32 known copies of the 'Sealed Books' of Common Prayer. The book of Common Prayer was revised in 1661, the alterations and corrections being entered in a printed folio of 1636, known as the 'Convocation Book'. A copy of this was attached to the Caroline Act of Uniformity, and called the 'Book Annexed'. It was signed and sealed by the four houses of Convocation, and became the legal standard Prayer Book.|
To make reference easier, a number of folio Prayer Books, already printed, were altered in pen by Commissioners appointed by the King. The aim was to bring them into agreement with the 'Book Annexed'. These were the 'Sealed Books' intended for use as legal records.
Each book was corrected and certified by the Royal Commissioners and then sealed with the Great Seal of England - hence its name.
This particular volume shows no trace of the Great Seal, which must once have been attached to the volume by a tape or cord. However, the seals and signatures of six Commmissioners appear at the rear of the volume. The date of sealing is given as 13th December 1662.
There are many corrections to the text, chiefly to headings and titles.
Of interest is the word 'Westminster', which appears in black ink on the front cover of the volume. This was the way in which most Cathedral copies were marked. It would, therefore, be reasonable to conclude that this copy belonged originally to Westminster Abbey. However, there is no documentary evidence to support this conclusion and it seems strange that a Chapter such as Westminster could have parted with such an important legal record.
Pw V 94/2 consists of correspondence from 1927 between Richard Goulding, Librarian at Welbeck Abbey, the Reverend Jospeh Paget of Bolsover, Chesterfield and Reverend W.A. Wickham of Bury St Edmunds. The latter is seeking information on the Sealed Book of Welbeck for an article he is writing.
Pw V 94/3 is a copy of Theology A Monthly Journal of Historic Christianity. It dates from November 1927 and contains Wickham's article entitled The Sealed Books, in which he mentions the Welbeck volume.
|Descriptive Features||Early flyleaves: watermark, Circle: crowned double circle enclosing a cartouche with the letters MG, and the letter T below the cartouche, 52 x 45 mm|
Brown suede leather on boards; central panel, blind tooled on both upper and lower covers, is made from double fillet lines, edged with a roll of delicate floral design facing the centre of the panel and the four outer corners of the central panel are decorated with a floral stamp; spine is divided into eight panels which enclose the sewing ridges and every one has a double fillet blind stamped; second panel on spine is gold stamped 'Common Prayer 1662' and the fifth panel on spine is gold stamped 'Signed & Sealed by the Royal Commissioners'; fore borders of binding are partly gold stamped with the same floral roll used for central panel of the covers. Spine has been repaired.