To be in my black books. In bad odour; in disgrace; out of
favour. The black books were those compiled in the reign of Henry VIII.
to set forth the scandalous proceedings of the English monasteries, and
were so called from the colour of their binding. We have similarly the
Blue Book, the Red Book, and so on.
Black Books of the Exchequer.
An official account of the royal revenues, payments, perquisites,
etc., in the reign of Henry II. Its cover was black leather. There are
two of them preserved in the Public Record Office.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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