Regius Manuscript – A Poem of Moral Duties – 1390

The Halliwell Manuscript, also known as the Regius Poem, is the earliest of the Old Charges. It consists of 64 vellum pages of Middle English written in rhyming couplets. In this, it differs from the prose of all the later charges. The poem begins by describing how “counterfeited ” and called it , for the employment of the children of the nobility in . It then recounts the spread of the art of in “divers lands.” The document relates how the craft of masonry was brought to during the reign of Athelstan (924–939).