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The Shape of the State in Medieval Scotland, 1124–1290$
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Alice Taylor

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198749202

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198749202.001.0001

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Accounting and Revenue, c.1180–1290

Accounting and Revenue, c.1180–1290

(p.349) 6 Accounting and Revenue, c.1180–1290
The Shape of the State in Medieval Scotland, 1124–1290

Alice Taylor

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines how and from what sources kings collected their revenue in order to understand the institutional form of royal government, and the relationship between ‘central’ and ‘local’ government. It argues that ‘central’ audits had developed by the early thirteenth century at the latest. But these audits were held at different places and not all officials had to attend them every year. Auditing was regionally focused, as was mint production. In addition, local episcopal and religious centres received a standard cut of the king’s income from all the revenue the king received through his sheriff. The sheriffdom stands out in this analysis as the key unit of government writ large; the ‘central’ justice and finance system had little institutional existence separate from the local sheriffdom. Scottish royal government was inherently localized in the area covered by sheriffdoms during the thirteenth century.

Keywords:   accounting, accountability, auditing, second teinds, revenue, sheriffs and sheriffdoms, coinage, mint production, exchequer

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