The Role and History of the Notary
The office of a notary public dates back to the civil institutions of ancient Rome remaining a figure of importance in many parts of continental Europe through the Middle Ages until today.
In England, the Archbishop of Canterbury was given authority by the Pope in 1279 to appoint notaries who at that time were becoming increasingly more important in matters concerning the relationship between Church and State.
In 1533 Henry VIII assumed the Pope's power of appointment and created the current day system of 'Court of Faculties' who have the power to appoint notaries.
English Notaries today are an important part of international trade and industry providing a link between the institutions of the common law and those of the civil law helping worldwide transactions for both business and individuals.