clerk register (Scotland). First seen in 1286 (as clerk of the rolls), the office entailed custodianship of the records of crown charters, the Exchequer, and Parliament. The clerk register initially wrote the records himself, but by the mid-16th cent. he was a director of record-keeping. From 1532 the clerk register was an advocate, present at Parliament, Privy Council, and session as both a record keeper and judge. From 1689 the office was a well-paid political appointment, but after the Union (1707), and the end of a separate Parliament and Privy Council, the job gradually declined into a sinecure.
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