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Some of the nation's greatest historical treasures are maintained in the libraries and archives of the City of London Corporation - the Treasure of the Month series is your chance to explore these rare artefacts in more detail and unlock London's history.

Many of the items rarely go on display, so take the opportunity to immerse yourself in our collective history.

Each month we'll be profiling a 'treasure' from one of the City's attractions including Guildhall Library, the Heritage Gallery, London Metropolitan Archives and the Guildhall Art Gallery.

To stay up-to-date with each month's Treasure, sign up to our Treasure of the Month email alert.

This month's treasure is...

The Great Parchment  Book

The Great Parchment Book is known as the Domesday Book of the Ulster Plantation - now part of modern Northern Ireland.

Compiled in 1639, it documents the period immediately following James I’s deliberate settlement of English and Scottish Protestants in Ulster. The City of London and City Livery Companies managed estates in and around the City of Derry and the Irish Society was created by the City to carry out these responsibilities. In the 1630s James’s son, Charles I, seized these estates in a politically motivated court case and a survey to gather together information about the land and all contracts was carried out, so “ the great parchment Booke” came into being.  The Book is a unique and highly significant historical source for the people of Northern Ireland.

Stored at Guildhall, it was totally damaged during a fire in 1786 but, following cutting edge conservation, it is on rare display.

For more information visit the Great Parchment Book website. The City of London Heritage Gallery is located in Guildhall Art Gallery and is open:

  • Monday 10am- 5pm
  • Tuesday 10am - 5pm
  • Wednesday 10am - 5pm
  • Thursday 10am - 5pm
  • Friday 10am - 5pm
  • Satur​day 10am - 5pm
  • Sunday - 11am - 4pm
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