Welcome to CIRCLE

Reconstructing the Past

The records of the Irish chancery were destroyed on 30 June 1922 in an explosion and fire in the Public Record Office of Ireland, located at the Four Courts, Dublin. Among the most important classes of record destroyed were the medieval Irish chancery rolls. 

CIRCLE is the culmination of nearly four decades of work reconstructing these lost records. It brings together all known letters enrolled on the Irish chancery rolls during the Middle Ages (1244–1509) drawing on originals, facsimiles, transcripts and calendars located in archival repositories in The Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, England and the USA.

The site contains over 20,000 Irish chancery letters translated from Latin into English, together with an unparalleled collection of digital images of surviving medieval chancery letters and rare printed volumes.

Find out more about CIRCLE by listening to 'Rediscovering Medieval Ireland'—a public lecture delivered by Robin Frame on 10 May 2011 to mark the official launch of CIRCLE.

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