Books of prime entry (Basics of Accounting)

All the business transaction is initially recorded in sources of documents. Record of these transaction are made in books of prime entry.

What is source documents? Source documents are the sources of all information which is recorded by a business.

Books of prime entry

Followings are the books of prime entry,

  1. Sales day book
  2. Sales return day book
  3. Purchase day book
  4. Purchase return day book
  5. Cash book
  6. Petty cash book
  7. Journals

Definition and documents which is used to record the books of prime entry,

Sales day book

Sales day book is used to write those transactions which take place on credit.

Credit sales invoice, credit notes sent, these documents are used to record in sales day book.

Sales return day book

When customer return goods from some reason, those return are recorded in sales return day book.

Sales return and credit notes, these transaction are recorded in sales return day book.

Purchase day book

The purchase day book is the record of all received invoices by the suppliers.

Credit purchase invoices, credit notes invoices, these documents are used to record in purchase day book.

Purchase return day book

The purchase return day book is kept to record credit notes received in respect of goods which is return by a business.

Purchase return and credit notes received are the documents which is used to record in purchase return day book.

Cash book

The cash book is the book of prime entry which keep a cumulative record of money received and money paid out by the business via its bank account or on cash.

Cash paid and received documents record the cash transaction.

Petty cash book

Most businesses keep a small amount o cash on the premises to make occasional small payments in cash. Petty cash means small transaction in a business.

Notes and coins paid documents are used to record petty cash.


Those entries which does not fit on above books of prime entry are record in journal.

Adjustments entries are used to record journal entries.

Practice Questions

State which books of prime entry the following transaction will be entered into.

  1. Your business pay Naveen (a supplier) $500
  2. You send Naveen (a customer) an invoice for $600
  3. Naveen pays you $500
  4. You pay Naveen $500
  5. Naveen (a customer) returns goods of $250
  6. You return goods to Naveen (a supplier) $500
  7. Receive an invoice from Naveen for $400


  1. Cash book
  2. Sales day book
  3. Cash book
  4. Cash book
  5. Sales return day book
  6. Purchase return day book
  7. Purchase day book

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