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Archaeologia Cantiana -  Vol. 1  1858   page 1

The Inventory of Juliana De Leyborne, Countess of Huntingdon
from the Surrenden Collection  By L. B. L.

THE Inventories of Executors and Administrators, from the Archives of the Ecclesiastical Courts, and those of attainted individuals, returned into the Court of Exchequer by the escheator, furnish us with evidence the most truthful of the wealth and power, the habits and modes of life of those whose personalities are therein recorded, often in minutest detail. We seem to be at once admitted behind the scenes, to witness all that passed there. "Sic sese ferebant" meets us at every turn, and, in many instances, much illustration, even of the very character of the party, is thereby revealed.
   Many of us must have frequently experienced this, in rambling through the rooms where the furniture and chattels of one lately dead are exposed to sale, in the precise state in which they were standing at the moment of departure. It is always a melancholy spectacle, and ought to be an instructive one.
   In this point of view, the early Inventories of contrariant and deceased magnates, on which we frequently stumble in our researches, possess the greatest interest; they throw light on the domestic habits of an age of which only the general public history is known, and that often but imperfectly. I have therefore thought

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