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command of the said Lords so assembled, or of any twelve
or more of them, make and prepare ready for the signature
of the said Lords, or any twelve or more of them, under pain of
the loss of their places and offices, and of such other punish*
ment as in the next, or any other ensuing Parliament, shall
be inflicted on him or them : and it is enacted that the said
writs so issued shall be of the same power and force to all
intents and purposes, as the writs or summons to Parliament
under the Great Seal of England have ever been or ought to be.
And all the messengers of the Chamber or others who shall be
appointed by the said Lords, or any twelve or more, are hereby
required faithfully and speedily to deliver the said writs to every
person and persons, sheriffs, officers, and others, to whom the
same shall be directed : which if the said messengers or any of
them shall fail to perform, they shall forfeit their respective
places, and incur such other pains and punishments as by that
or any other ensuing Parliament shall be imposed on them.

in. And it is also further enacted, that all and every the
peers of this realm shall make their appearance, and shall
assemble on the said third Monday in January, in such manner,
and to such effect, and with such power, as if they had received
every of them writs of summons to Parliament under the
Great Seal of England, in the usual and accustomed manner.
And in case the said Lords, or twelve or more of them, sball
fail to issue forth such writs, or that the said writs do not come
to the said several Counties, Cities, Cinque Ports and Boroughs,
so that an election be not thereupon made ; and in case there be
not a Parliament assembled and held before the 23rd day
of the said month of January, and so from time to time, and
in all times hereafter, if there shall not be a Parliament assem-
bled and held before the said 23rd day of January, then in every
such case as aforesaid the Parliament shall assemble, and be
held in the usual place at Westminster, in such manner, and
by such means only, as is hereafter in this present Act declared
and enacted, and not otherwise, on the second Tuesday which
shall be in the month of March next after the said 23rd day



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1640-1] The Triennial Act 149

of January ; at which Parliament the peers of this realm shall
make their appearance, and shall assemble at the time and
place aforesaid, and shall each of them be liable unto such
pains and censures for his and their not appearing and serving
then and there in Parliament, as if he or they had been summoned
by writ under the Great Seal of England, and had not appeared
and served ; and to such farther pains and censures, as by the
rest of the peers in Parliament assembled they shall be adjudged
unto.

IV. And for the better assembling of the knights, citizens,
barons, and burgesses to the said Parliament, as aforesaid, it is
further enacted, that the several and respective sheriffs of the
several and respective Counties, Cities and Boroughs of England
and Wales, and the Chancellors, Masters and Scholars of both
and every of the Universities, and the Mayor and Bailiffs of the
borough of Berwick upon Tweed, shall at the several courts and
places to be held and appointed for their respective Counties,
Universities, Cities and Boroughs, next after the said 23rd day
of January, cause such knight and knights, citizen and citizens,
burgess and burgesses of their said Counties, Universities, Cities
and Boroughs respectively, to be chosen by such persons, and in
such manner, as if several and respective writs of summons to
Parliament, under the Great Seal of England, had issued, and
been awarded. And in case any of the several Sheriffs, or the
Chancellors, Masters and Scholars of either of the Universities,
or the Mayor and Bailiffs of Berwick respectively, do not before
ten of the clock in the forenoon of the same day wherein the
several and respective courts and places shall be held or ap-
pointed for their several and respective Counties, Universities,
Cities and Boroughs as aforesaid, begin and proceed on accord-
ing to the meaning of this law, in causing elections to be
made of such knight and knights, citizen and citizens, burgess
and burgesses, of their said Counties, Universities, Cities and
Boroughs as aforesaid, then the freeholders of each County,
and the Masters and Scholars of every the Universities, and
the citizens and others having voices in such election re-
spectively, in each University, City and Borough, that shall
be assembled at the said courts or places to be held, or
appointed, as aforesaid, shall forthwith, without further warrant



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i5cr Constitutional Documents [1640-x

or direction, proceed to the election of such knight or knights,
citizen or citizens, hurgess or hurgesses aforesaid, in such
manner as is usual in cases of writs of summons issued and
awarded.

V. And it is further enacted that the several and respective
sheriffs of their several and respective counties, and the Con-
stables of the Castle of Dover, and Lord Warden of the Cinque
Ports, or his lieutenant for the time being respectively, shall
after the said 23rd day of January, and before the 8th day of
February then immediately next ensuing, award and send forth
their precepts to the several and respective cities and boroughs
within their several counties, and likewise unto the said Cinque
Ports respectively, commanding them respectively to make
choice of such citizen and citizens, barons, burgess and burgesses,
to serve in the said Parliament, at the time and place aforesaid :
which said Cities, Cinque Ports and Boroughs respectively, shall
before the last day of the said month of February make election
of such citizen and citizens, barons, burgess and burgesses, as
if writs for summoning of a Parliament, under the Great Seal
of England, has issued and been awarded. And in case no such
precept shall come unto the said Cities, Cinque Ports and
Boroughs respectively, by the time herein limited : or in case
any precept shall come, and no election be made thereupon,
before the said last day of February, that then the several
citizens, burgesses, and other persons that ought to elect and
send citizens, barons, and burgesses to the Parliament, shall on
the first Tuesday in March then next ensuing the said last day
of February make choice of such citizen and citizens, barons,
burgess and burgesses, as if a writ of summons under the Great
Seal of England had issued and been awarded, and precepts
thereupon issued, to such Cities, Cinque Ports and Boroughs :
which knights, citizens, barons and burgesses so chosen shall
appear and serve in Parliament at the time and place aforesaid,
and shall each of them be liable unto such pains and censures
for his and their not appearing and serviug then and there
in Parliament, as if he or they had been elected and chosen
by virtue of a writ under the Great Seal of England, and
shall be likewise subject unto such further pains and censures
for hig and their not appearing and serving then and there



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1640-x] The Triennial Act 151

in Parliametit, as if he or they had been elected and chosen
by Tirtne of a writ under the Great Seal of England, and
shall be likewise sabject to such further pains and censures
as by the rest of the knights, citizens and burgesses assembled
in tiie Commons House of Parliament, he or they shall be
adjudged unto. And the sheriffs and other officers and persons
to whom it appertaineth shall make returns, and accept and
receive the returns of such elections in like manner as if writs
of summons had issued, and been executed, as hath been used
and accustomed : and in default of the sheriffs and other officers
respectively, in not accepting or making return of such elections,
it shall and may be lawful to and for the several freeholders,
and other persons that have elected, to make returns of the
knights, citizens, barons and burgesses by them elected, which
shall be as good and effectual to all intents and purposes as
if the sheriff or other officers had received a writ of summons
for a Parliament, and had made such returns : and that such
elections, precepts and returns shall be had and made at such
times, by such persons^ and in such manner, as before in this
Act is expressed and declared, according to the true intent and
meaning of this law ; any writ, proclamation, edict, act, restraint,
inhibition, order or warrant to the contrary in any wise not-
withstanding. And in case any person or persons shall be so
hardy to advise, frame, contriye, serve or put in execution any
such writs, proclamation, edict, act, restraint, inhibition, order
or warrant thereupon, then he or they so offending shall incur
and sustain the pains, penalties and forfeitures limited, ordained
and provided in and by the Statute of Provision and Premunire
made in the i6th year of King Richard the Second, and shall
from thenceforth be disabled, during his life, to sue and implead
any person in any action real or personal, or to make any gift,
grant, conveyance, or other disposition of any his lands, tene-
ments, hereditaments, goods or chattels which he hath to his
own use, either by act executed in his lifetime, or by his last
will, or otherwise, or to take any gift, conveyance, or legacy
to his own use : and if any Sheriff, Constable of the Castle of
Dover, or Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, shall not perform
his duty enjoined by this Act, then he shall lose and forfeit
the sum of £1000, and every County, City, Cinque Port and



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15a Constitutional Documents [1640-1

Borough that shall not make election of their knights, citizens,
harons and bargesses, respectiyely, shall incur the penalties
following (that is to say) every County the sum of £1000, and
every City, which is no County, £200, and every Cinque Port
and Borough the sum of £100 ; all and every of which several
forfeitures, and all other forfeitures in this Act mentioned, shall
and may be recovered in any of the King's Courts of Becord at
Westminster, without naming the Christian name and surname
of the said Mayor for the time being, by action of debt, bill,
plaint or information, wherein no essoine, protection, wager of
law, aid, prayer, privilege, injunction, or order of restraint, shall
be in any wise prayed, granted or allowed, nor any more than
one imparlance : and if any person after notice given that the
action depending is grounded and prosecuted upon or by virtue
of this Statute shall cause or procure any such action to be
stayed or delayed before judgment by colour or means of any
order, warrant, power or authority, save only of the court
wherein such action as aforesaid shall be brought or depending,
or after judgment had upon such action, shall cause or procure
the execution of, or upon any such judgment, to be stayed or
delayed by colour or means of any order, warrant, power or
authority, save only by writ of error or attaint, that then the
said persons so offending shall incur and sustain all and every
the pains, penalties and forfeitures, limited, ordained and pro-
vided in and by the said Statute of Provision and Premunire,
made in the i6th of King Bichard the Second. And if any
Lord Mayor of London shall at any time hereafter commence
or prefer any such suit, action or information, and shall happen
to die or be removed out of his office before recovery and
execution had, that yet not such action, suit or information,
sued, commenced or preferred, shall by such displacing or death
be abated, discontinued or ended, but that it shall and may
be lawful to and for the Lord Mayor of the City of London
next succeeding in that office and place, to prosecute, pursue
and follow all and every such action, bill, plaint or information
for the causes aforesaid, so hanging and depending in such
manner and form, and to all intents and purposes, as that Lord
Mayor might have done, which first commenced or preferred the
same. The fifth part of all and every the forfeitures in this



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1640-1] The Triennial Act 153

Act mentioned, shall go and be, to, and for the use and behoof
of the City of London, and the other four parts and residue to
be employed and disposed to, and for such only uses, intents
and purposes as by the knights, citizens and burgesses in
Parliament assembled, shall be declared, directed and appointed.

Proyided that in case the freeholders of any County and
inhikbitants, or other persons having or claiming power to make
election of any knights, citizens, barons or burgesses, shall proceed
to making of election of their knights, citizens, barons and
burgesses, which election shall afterwards fall out to be adjudged
or declared void in law by the House of Commons, by reason of
equality of voices or misdemeanour of any person whatsoever,
then the said County, City, Cinque Port or Borough shall not
incur the penalties in this law, so as an election de facto be made.

YI. And it is further enacted, that no Parliament henceforth
to be assembled shall be dissolved or prorogued within fifty
days at least after the time appointed for the meeting thereof,
unless it be by assent of His Majesty, his heirs or successors,
and of both Houses in Parliament assembled ; and that neither
the House of Peers nor the House of Commons shall be ad-
journed within fifty days at least after the meeting thereof, unless
it be by the free consent of every the said Houses respectively.

VII. And be it further enacted and declared by authority of
this present Parliament, that the Peers to be assembled at any
Parliament by virtue of this Act, shall and may from time to
time, at any time during such their assembly in Parliament,
choose and declare such person to be Speaker for the said
Peers as they shall think fit. And likewise that the said
knights, citizens and burgesses to be assembled at any Parlia-
ment by virtue of this Act, shall and may from time to time,
at any time during such their assembly in Parliament, choose
and declare one of themselves to be Speaker for the said knights,
citizens and burgesses of the House of Commons assembled in
the said Parliament as they shall think fit; which said Speakers,
and every of them, as well for the said Peers as for the said
House of Commons respectively, shall, by virtue of this Act,
be perfect and complete Speakers for the said Houses respectively,
and shall have as full and large power, jurisdiction and privi-
leges, to all intents and purposes, as any Speaker or Speakers



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154 Constitutional Documents [1640-1

of either of the said Houses respectiyely, heretofore have had or
enjoyed.

Ylll. And it is farther enacted and declared, that all Parlia^
ments hereafter to be assembled by authority of this Act and
every member thereof shall have and enjoy all rights, privileges,
jurisdictions and immunities, as any Parliament summoned by
writ under the Great Seal of England, or any member thereof
might or ought to have; and all and every the members that
shall be elected and chosen to serve in any Parliament here-
after to be assembled by authority of this Act as aforesaid,
shall assemble and meet in the Commons House of Parliament,
and shall enter into the same, and have voices in such Parlia-
ment before and without the taking of the several oaths of
supremacy and allegiance, or either of them, any law or statute
to the contrary thereof in any wise notwithstanding.

IX. Provided always, that if the King's Majesty, his heirs
or successors, shall at any time during any Parliament here-
after to be assembled by authority of this Act as aforesaid,
award or direct any commission or commissions unto any person
or persons whatsoever, thereby giving power and authority to
him or them to take and receive the oath of supremacy and
allegiance, of all or any the members of the Commons House of
Parliament, and any the members of that House being ^uly
required thereunto, shall refuse or neglect to take and pro-
nounce the same, that from thenceforth such person so refusing
or neglecting shall be deemed no member of that House, nor
shall have any voice therein, and shall suffer such pains and
penalties as if he had presumed to sit in the same House
without election, return or authority.

X. And it is likewise provided and enacted, that this Statute
shall be publicly read yearly at every General Sessions of the
Peace, to be held next after the Epiphany, and every Assizes
then next ensuing by the Clerk of the Peace and Clerk of the
Assizes for the time being respectively. And if they or either
of them shall neglect or fail to do the same accordingly, then
such party so neglecting or failing shall forfeit the sum of one
hundred pounds.

XI. And it is lastly provided and enacted, that His Majesty's
royal assent to this Bill shall not thereby determine this present



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i64i] The Protestation 155

Session of Parliament S and that all statutes and Acts of Parlia-
ment which are to have continuance unto the end of this present
Session, shall be of fiill force after His Majest/s assent, until
this present Session be fully ended and determined ; and if this
present Session shall determine by dissolution of this present
Parliament, then all the Acts and statutes aforesaid shall be
continued until the end of ^ first Session of the next
Parliament. '



^ 28. The Pbotestation.
[May 3, 1641. Ruihworth, vlii. 735, See Hut, of Engl, ix. 353.]

We the knights, citizens and burgesses of the Commons
House in Parliament, finding to the grief of our hearts that
the designs of the Priests and Jesuits, and other adherents
to the See of Home, haye of late been more boldly and fre-
quently put in practice than formerly, to the undermining and
danger of the true reformed Protestant religion in His Mstjesty's
dominions established ; and finding also that there hath been,
and having just cause to suspect there still are, even during
the sittings in Parliament, endeavours to subvert the funda-
mental laws of England and Ireland, and to introduce the
exercise of an arbitrary and tyrannical government by most
pernicious and wicked counsels, practices, plots and conspiracies ;
and that the long intermission and unhappier breach of Parlia-
ments hath occasioned many illegal taxations, whereby the
subjects have been prosecuted and grieved; and that divers
innovations and superstitions have been brought into the
Church, multitudes driven out of His Majesty's dominions,
jealousies raised and fomented between the King and his
people; a Popish army levied in Ireland, and two armies*
brought into the bowels of this kingdom, to the hazard of His .
Majesty's royal person, the consumption of the revenue of the
crown and the treasure of this realm. And lastly, finding

* It was at that time the custom that the royal assent was given to
Bills at the end of the Session, and it was consequently argued that the
assent put an end to the Session.

* The Scottish army and the English army opposed to it



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156 Constitutional Documents [1641

the great cause of jealousy, that endeavours have been, and
are used, to bring the English army into a misunderstanding
of this Parliament, thereby to incline that army by force to
bring to pass those wicked counsels; have therefore thought
good to join ourselves in a Declaration of our united affections
and resolutions and to make this ensuing Protestation : —

I, A. B., do, in the presence of God, promise, vow and protest
to maintain and defend, as far as lawfully I may with my life,
power and estate, the true reformed Protestant religion ex-
pressed in the doctrine of the Church of England, against all
Popery and popish innovation within this realm, contrary to
the said doctrine, and according to the duty of my aUegiance,
I will maintain and defend His Majesty's royal person and estate,
as also the power and privilege of Parliaments, the lawful
rights and liberties of the subjects, and every person that shall
make this Protestation in whatsoever he shall do, in the lawful
pursuance of the same ; and to my power, as far as lawfully
I may, I will oppose, and by all good ways and means en-
deavour to bring to condign punishment all such as shall by
force, practice, counsels, plots, conspiracies or otherwise do
anything to the contrary in this present Protestation contained :
and further, that I shall in all just and honourable ways en-
deavour to preserve the union and peace betwixt the three
kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland, and neither for
hope, fear or any other respects, shall relinquish this promise,
vow and^ protestation.



4,



The Act for the Attaindbb op the Eabl
OF Straffobd.



[May 10, 1641. Statutes of the Realm, v. 177. See Hist of Engl,
ix. 329-366.]

Whereas the knights, citizens and burgesses of the House
of Commons in this present Parliament assembled, have, in
the name of themselves and of all the Commons of England,
impeached Thomas Earl of Strafford of high treason, for en-
deavouring to subvert the ancient and fundamental laws and
government of His Majesty's realms of England and Ireland,
and to introduce an arbitrary and tyrannical government



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i64i] The Attainder of the Earl of Strafford 157

against law in the said kingdoms, and for exercising a tyran-
nous and exorbitant power above and against the laws of the
»said kingdoms, over the liberties, estates and lives of His
Majesty's subjects ; and likewise for having by his own authority
commanded the laying and sessing of soldiers upon His Majesty's
subjects in Ireland, against their consents, to compel them to
obey his unlawful summons and orders, made upon paper
petitions in causes between party And party, which accordingly
was executed upon divers of His Majesty's subjects in a war-
like manner within the said realm of Ireland; and in so doing
did levy war against the King's Majesty and his liege-people
in that kingdom ; and also for that he, upon the unhappy dis-
solution of the last Parliament, did slander the House of Com-
mons to His Majesty ; and did counsel and advise His Majesty
that he was loose and absolved from rules of government ; and
that he had an army in Ireland which he might employ to
reduce this kingdom, for which he deserves to undergo the pains
and forfeitures of high treason. And the said Earl hath also
been an incendiary of the wars between the two kingdoms
of England and Scotland, all which offences hath been sufficiently
proved against the said Earl upon his impeachment.

Be it therefore enacted by the King's Most Excellent Majesty,
and by the Lords and Commons in this present Parliament
assembled, and by authority of the same, that the said Earl
of Strafford, for the heinous crimes and offences aforesaid,
stand and be adjudged and attainted of high treason, and
shall suffer such pains of death, and incur the forfeitures of
his goods and chattels, lands, tenements and hereditaments
of any estate of freehold or inhmtanoe in the said kingdoms
of England and Ireland, which the said Earl or any other to
his use, or in trust for him, have or had, the day of the first
sitting of this Parliament, or at any time since.

Provided ^ that no judge or judges, justice or justices what-
soever, shall adjudge or interpret any act or thing to be
treason, nor hear or determine any treason nor in any other

^ Note by Biuhworth : < This piotIbo hath oocaiioned th« common dis-
oouTBe and opinion that ibit judgment againit the Earl waa enacted neyer
to be drawn into preoed«it in Pariiament, whereaa it expressly respecte
only judgee in inferior oonrts/



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158 Constitutional Documents [1641

manner than he or they should or ought to have done before
the making of this Act, and as if this Act had never been had
nor made ; saving always unto all and singular persons, bodies,
politic and corporate, their heirs and successors, others than
the said Earl and his heirs, and such as claim from, by, or
under him, all such right, title and interest of, in, and to all
and singular such of the lands, tenements and hereditaments,
as he, they, or any of them had before the first day of this
present Parliament, anything herein contained to the contrary
notwithstanding.

Provided that the passing of this present Act, or His
Majesty's assent thereunto, shall not be any determination of
this present Sessions of Parliament; but that this present
Sessions of Parliament, and all Bills and matters whatsoever



Online LibrarySamuel Rawson GardinerThe constitutional documents of the Puritan revolution 1625-1660 → online text (page 20 of 51)