From Marteau

A check was a hand-written note to a banker requesting a certain sum be paid to an individual (The payee) by the bank (the Drawee, Acceptor and payer) for the person who wrote it (The Drawer). This is a type of Bill of Exchange.

The typical text was as follows:

                                   (Date and location)
 Please to pay to (payee) or order (Sum of money written out)
 and place the same to (drawer).
 per yours,
 To (Drawee)     (Signature)

Source: RBS Group. The Story of Banking: A history of British Banking.