rendan King of An Tir, to his dukes, earls, justices, barons, sheriffs and to all his servants and liegemen of the whole of An Tir, greeting. Desiring with paternal affection to provide for the education of our scholars do we recognize and grant to the masters, fellows and students of St. Giles' College and their successors the underwritten liberties, franchises, aquittances and immunities: to wit:
That the college shall be henceforth a free college incorporate, in reality in the name of the masters and fellows and their successors, and use the same liberties, dignities and customs with which our other colleges worthily and freely hold.
And we also will and grant by these presents for us and our successors that they shall have perpetual succession. And that the same present masters, fellows and students and their said successors by that name shall be able to prosecute and defend all manner of pleas, suits, plaints, demands, and mixed actions moved or to be moved in whatsoever the courts of us and our successors, both before us and our heirs and before whatsoever justices and judges , and that they may plead and be impleaded in the same, and answer and be answered, and that they may have a common seal to further the business of the said college forever.
And further we will and by these presents for us our heirs and successors that the same present masters, fellows and students and their heirs and successors shall have a fair each year on the day of St. Generic unless that fair should be on the harm of neighbouring markets and fairs. Wherefore we wish and firmly enjoin for us and our heirs that the masters, fellows and students of St. Giles shall have in perpetuity the fair with all the liberties and free customs that pertain a fair of this kind.
And further we have granted and do grant by these presents for us our heirs and successors to the present masters, fellows and students and their heirs and successors that they may, by their writings under the seal of the Chancellor of the said College, from time to time assign, appoint and in perpetuity have among them and perpetually remaining and dwelling within our aforesaid College, Stationers, Printers or Sellers of Books. These Stationers or Bookprinters, assigned in the aforesaid manner, and any of them, shall have lawful and incontestable power to print there all manner of books approved, or hereafter to be approved, by the aforesaid Chancellor or his deputy; and also to exhibit for sale, as well in the same College as elsewhere in our realm, wherever they please, all such books and all other books wherever printed, both within and outside our realm.
Calligraphy and Illumination by Meister Iago ap Adam, OL, Fellow of S. Giles.
Text researched and written by Duncan, Lord Macquarrie, GdS, Fellow of S. Giles.
Primary sources for the charter
"Charter of the borough of Grantham, 1463", Royal Charters of Grantham 1463-1688, G.H. Martin, Leicester University Press, 1963.
"Charter of Stephen creating Geoffrey 'de Mandeville' earl of Essex, 1140", English Historical Documents 1042-1189, Douglas and Greenaway, eds., 1953.
"Royal grant of a fair and market, 1338", English Historical Documents 1327-1485, A. R. Meyers, ed., 1969.
"Letters patent granted to the University of Cambridge by Henry VIII", History of Cambridge University Press, David McKitterick, 1992, Vol I.