journal definition

The record of journal entries appearing in order by date. Some refer to the journal as the book of original entry, since the entries are first recorded in a journal. From the journal the entries will be posted to the designated accounts in the general ledger. With manual systems there are likely to be a sales journal, purchases journal, cash receipts journal, cash disbursements journal, and the general journal. With computerized accounting systems, it is likely that the general journal will be used sparingly. The software is likely to record the other transactions automatically as invoices are entered, checks are prepared, receipts processed, etc.