Court of the Commissary of the Bishop of London (London Division)
Step By Step
1. First search each index (see below) to help you more quickly find the will, writing down each detail cited in the indexed entry.
2. Proceed then to the "Probate Records of This Court" section (see below) to determine what original probate records exist for this court.
3. Contact or visit The London Metropolitan Archives and Library, or, hire a professional record searcher to view these records on your behalf, citing information obtained from the index[es]. Officials may send upon request a list of record searchers.
4. You can also visit The Family History Library, or, one of its 4,500 satellite family history centers worldwide and search indexes (see the Family History Library's cataloged entries providing the microfilms so you can have them circulated to the center near you for searching the wills). The information obtained from the index[es] will help you more quickly search the wills and admons which can also be circulated on microfilm via any family history .
The Archdeaconry Court of Middlesex probate records have to some extent been indexed with the following ones:
Printed and Published Indexes
- Abstracts of copy wills, Commissary Court of London [London division], registered wills, 1750-1857
- Index to testamentary records in the Commissary Court of London (London Division) 1374-1700 by Marc Fitch, available at Society of Genealogists, The Guildhall Library, London Metropolitan Archives and Library, The Family History Library
- A comprehensive will and admon index to most of London's (including Greater L.) probate courts for the years covering 1750-1858 for surnames A-F, is Dr David Wright's London Probate Index on CD and is available. He will provide a search service in his indexes for surnames covering from G-Z at a set fee.
Original Handwritten Indexes
Court probate inventories, 1662-1747 with surnames alpha-arranged
Probate and administration act book, 1667-1675
Calender of Probate & Administrations acts, vols. 1-16, 1660-1810
Microfilmed Indexes at the Family History Library
The indexes as listed in the above are also available covering the years 1662-1810 at The Family History Library and they are on microfilm and may be circulated to each of its satellite Family History Centers worldwide.
The Record Office and Its Probate Collections
The London Metropolitan Archives & Library
40 Northampton Road
London EC1R 0HB
Tel: (020) 7332 3820
Fax: (020) 7833 9136
Website is available:
Opening Times: Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9.30am - 4.45pm
Tuesday and Thursday 9.30am - 7.30pm
Saturday openings: 9.30am - 4.45pm
January 10 May 9 September 12
January 24 June 13 September 26
February 14 June 27 October 10
February 28 July 11 October 24
March 14 July 25 November 28
March 28 August 8 December 12
April 25 August 22
Archived Probate Records for This Court
Original Wills 1523-1857
Register Copy Wills 1374-1857 (with gaps)
Probate & Administration Act books 1496-1857 (with gaps)
Inventories 1666-1667, 1672-1857 (with gaps)
Deposition Books 1537-1722
Personal Answers 1675-1736
Ex Officia Assignation Books 1712-1811
Instance Act Books 1570-1675
Return to the London Probate Records page.
The Commissary Court of London (London Division) had jurisdiction over 94 parishes in Greater London (Middlesex) and the City--including 50 parish within the City of London proper and 44 in the county of Middlesex. When a search of this courts’ probate records fails to provide the desired probate record, be sure to search the Consistory Court of the Bishop of London as well.
Strategies, Tips, Other?
See the above Indexes or those available through the Family History Library or its many family history centers worldwide for an index to this court.
To view a list of parishes and their respective probate court jurisdiction, see the "Middlesex Parishes and Their Probate Jurisdictions" on the main page for Middlesex Probate Records.