The Dering Roll by Unknown Artist

The Dering Roll is the oldest extant English roll of arms.


Paint on vellum
264.5 x 21 cm
Art Fund grant:
£40,000 ( Total: £194,184; Export stopped)
Acquired in:
Private vendor

It provides a vital documentary record for the study of knighthood in medieval England, depicting the coats of arms of approximately a quarter of the English baronage during the reign of King Edward I (1272-1307). It gives special emphasis to knights from the counties of Kent and Sussex. The manuscript was altered at some point after 1638 by Sir Edward Dering, an antiquarian scholar and sometime lieutenant of Dover Castle. One of the shields originally bore the arms of Nicholas de Crioll, but Dering had this erased and inserted his own arms bearing the name of a fictional ancestor, Richard fitz Dering. This demonstrates Sir Edward Dering's attempts to prove the antiquity of his own family.


? Hugh Fitzwilliam of Sprotborough, circa 1550; Mr Knevett, circa 1590, thought to be Thomas Knevett of Ashwellthorpe, Norfolk; Sir Edward Dering of Pluckley in Kent died 1644;...; Sir Thomas Philipps, circa 1836; Sir Anthony Wagner, 1948; by descent; Sot

Venue details

British Library 96 Euston Road, LONDON London NW1 2DB 01937 546546

Entry details

50% off with National Art Pass

Main building

Mon – Thu, 9.30am – 8pm

Fri, 9.30am –​6pm (Sat until 5pm)

​Sun, 11am-5pm

Treasures Gallery and PACCAR exhibitions

Tue –Thu, 9.30am-8pm, Mon & Fri until 6pm, Sat until 5pm, Sun 11am – 5pm