Edmunds, Leonard

Leonard Edmunds was a British civil servant who held a dual appointment as Clerk of Commissioner of Patents and Reading Clerk to the House of Lords from 1835 until 1865.

One of his duties in the former post was to sign royal charters and patents in the name of the monarch. He put his name to Queen's Royal Charter on behalf of Queen Victoria on October 16, 1841, which has since been known as University Day.

In 1865, Edmunds was forced from both of his jobs when a series of investigations revealed that he had been skimming money from the fees that groups paid for charters and patents.

He publicly charged, however, that some of the 17,000 pounds that he had skimmed were for the Lord Chancellor, the British equivalent of the Minister of Finance. In the ensuing scandal, the Lord Chancellor was also forced to resign.

It is unknown whether Edmunds skimmed money from the more than 600 pounds that Queen's officials paid for their charter.