What is a general ledger?

Definition of a general ledger

The general ledger is all of a business’s accounts, assets, liabilities, income, expenses and capital and their contents. It's also known as a nominal ledger.

It's the end of the tax return as we know it! Find out about HMRC’s Making Tax Digital plan and how it will affect you with our free guide.

Before the days of computerised accounting a clerk, like Dickens’ Bob Cratchit, would write up a business’s transactions in a series of large leather-bound books called ledgers. He would list the sales invoices in the sales ledger, the purchase invoices (or bills) in the purchase ledger and everything else in the general ledger.

Got questions? Ask Emily!

FreeAgent's Chief Accountant Emily Coltman is available to answer your questions in the comments.

Bookkeeping and tax tips

We'll keep your email safe · Read our privacy policy