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ground thereof but public and common fame only. In Chapter

XII. 1701, a complaint was made, by the Commons, of expressions used by Lord Haversham, at a free conference, and numerous communications ensued, which were terminated by a prorogation. On the 14th December, 1641, and on the 20th May, 1642, exception being taken to words used by Lord Pierpoint, and by Lord Herbert of Cherbury, they were commanded to withdraw, and were committed to the custody of the gentleman usher: On the 14th March, 1770, exception was taken to a statement in debate by the Earl of Chatham, “that the late lord chancellor was dismissed for giving his vote in this house ; " and the house resolved " that nothing

had appeared to this house to justify his assertion.” 4. Against a Disrespectful or abusive mention of a statute would seem

to be partly open to the same objections as improper
language applied to the Parliament itself; for it imputes
discredit to the legislature which passed it, and has a
tendency to bring the law into contempt; though the
necessity of the repeal of a law justifies, as an argument for
that course, its condemnation in debate. A statement that
the enactment of a law may justify an appeal to force is

not within the cognizance of the chair."
Matters (6) Matters awaiting the adjudication of a court of law
judicial de- should not be brought forward in debate. This rule was

observed by Sir R. Peel and Lord J. Russell, both by the
wording of the speech from the throne, and by their procedure
in the house, regarding Mr. O'Connell's case (see n. 4, p.

278), and has been maintained by rulings from the chair. 6 Reflections (7) Unless the discussion is based upon a substantive gn, motion, drawn in proper terms (see p. 277), reflections must

not be cast in debate upon the conduct of the sovereign,
the heir to the throne, and members of the royal family,

on the

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12 L. J. 713; see also 4 ib. 582; 1 C. J. 496. 499, &c.; 3 Hatsell, 73.

? 13 C. J. 629. 634. 637. 639.
3 4 L. J. 475; 5 ib. 77.
4 32 ib. 476.
52nd Sept. 1886,308 H. D. 3 s.1108.

6 See also the Speaker's remarks in ruling out of order the discussion

of allegations of bribery and corruption at an election before the expiration of the period during which an election petition could be lodged, 64 Parl. Deb. 4 s. 868.

: 312 H. D. 3 s. 1061; 338 ib. 1338; 33 Parl. Deb. 4 s. 896 ; 93 ib. 1362; 97 ib. 1164 ; 99 ib, 471.

Chapter the Viceroy and Governor-General of India, the Lord

Lieutenant of Ireland," the Speaker, the chairman of ways
and means, members of either house of Parliament,4 and
judges of the superior courts of the United Kingdom,
including persons holding the position of a judge such as a
judge in a Court of Bankruptcy and of a county court.6
Nor may opprobrious reflections be cast in debate on
sovereigns and rulers over countries in amity with his

(8) In order to guard against all appearance of person- Personal
ality in debate, it was formerly the rule, in both houses,
that no member should refer to another by name. In the
upper house, however, a lord is now alluded to by name,
but in the Commons, each member must be distinguished
by the office he holds, by the place he represents, or by
other designations, as “the noble lord the secretary for
foreign affairs,” “ the honourable” or “right honourable
gentleman the member for York,” or “the honourable and
learned member who has just sat down.” 8 The use of Against
temperate and decorous language is never more desirable membe
than when a member is canvassing the opinions and conduct
of his opponents in debate. The imputation of bad motives,
or motives different from those acknowledged ;' misrepre-
senting the language of another, or accusing him, in his
1 137 Parl. Deb. 4 s. 1045.


36 ib. 201 ; 52 ib. 23; 75 ib. 891; 2 311 H. D. 3 s. 954 ; 313 ib. 472; 96 ib. 306; 132 ib. 683. 696. 234 ib. 1558; 238 ib. 1953; 142 © The Speaker has also ruled out Parl. Deb. 4 s. 1507.

of order language disrespectful to 3 302 H. D. 3 8. 1710; 95 Parl. persons administering justice, such Deb. 4 s. 235.

as resident magistrates in Ireland, 4 Lord Chancellor, 56 Parl. Deb. 103 Parl, Deb. 4 s. 462, 4 s. 859; 75 ib. 890; 156 ib. 597. See ? 14th Feb. 1878, 237 H. D. 3 s. Speaker's ruling, that the explicit 1639; 6th March, 1878, 238 ib. 799 ; statement of the prime minister 22nd Feb. 1897, 46 Parl. Deb. 4 s. must be accepted, 8th June, 1883, 892. 280 H. D. 3 s. 116. Discussion of 83 Burton's Parliamentary Diary, the conduct of a peer as chairman 140. 141, 8th Feb. 1659. Mr. of a joint committee on a bill has Berkeley was called to order, 20th been ruled out of order in com- March, 1860, for referring to mittee on the recommitted bill, members by name, as having 111 Parl. Deb. 4 s. 19. 27. 707. spoken, in former sessions, against

5 276 H, D. 3 s. 934 ; 287 ib. 1732; the ballot, 157 H. D. 3 s. 939. 320 ib. 1024. 1031; 322 ib. 463 ; 12 125 Parl. Deb. 4 s. 1530; 133 ib. Parl. Deb. 4 s. 1807 ; 14 ib. 1090; 748.

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turn, of misrepresentation; charging him with falsehood Chapter or deceit; or contemptuous or insulting language of any kind;-all these are unparliamentary, and call for prompt interference. The same right to claim courteous treatment in debate is due alike between both houses of Parliament; and abusive language, and imputations of falsehood, uttered by members of the House of Commons against members of the House of Lords have been met by the immediate intervention of the chair to compel the withdrawal of the offensive words,3 or, in default, by the punishment of suspension.

The rules of the House of Lords upon this point are very distinctly laid down in standing order No. 28, which directs " that all personal, sharp, or taxing speeches be forborne" in the house; and that if any offence be given of that kind, the house “ will sharply censure the offender." 5

In the Lords.

IA charge that a member has obstructed the business of the house, or that a speech is an abuse of the rules of the house is not out of order, 308 H. D. 3 s. 1170 ; 125

Parl. Deb. 4 s. 945. Threat of ? For examples of unparliaforce to mentary expressions, see 28th Nov. resist a 1770 (Mr. Charles Fox), 2 Cavendish

Deb. 118. 120; Debates, 3rd March, 332,

1864; 173 H. D. 3 s. 1406; and cases
of Viscount Palmerston and Mr.
Layard, 27th April, 1855, and of Mr.
Gathorne Hardy and Mr. Layard,
7th July, 1864 (vote of confidence)
as to the words, scalumnious
charges," 137 ib. 1895 ; 176 ib. 1003;
also 186 ib. 173. 422. 441. 884 ; 187
ib. 953; 188 ib. 1895. “Dodge"
ruled to be an unparliamentary ex.
pression, 193 ib. 1297; so also
“factious opposition," ib. 1741 ; and
“jockeyed," 198 ib. 521 ; and ac-
cusing a member of having “de.
liberately raised a false issue," 205
ib. 1743; and having “ passed a
somewhat impertinent censure,"
206 ib. 1685; “hypocritical lovers
of liberty,” 237 ib. 1639; “rude re-
marks,” 320 ib. 763; “falsehood,"
96 ib. 1206; 314 ib. 258; 92 Parl.

Deb. 4 s. 159; "gross calumny," 106 ib. 1257; “impudence," 92 ib. 968 ; “ruffianism," 99 ib. 1065 ; “windbag," 139 ib. 654; “hypocrites, pharisees,” 102 ib. 1002; alleging that a member's statements were “ cowardly," 146 ib. 1490; "not consonant with personal honour,'' 143 ib. 1542; "a malignant slander," 105 ib. 579; “scurrilous," 150 ib. 274; or that a member's action amounted to "a dirty trick," 132 ib. 507 ; was “criminal," 105 ib. 1072; “disgraceful,” 143 ib. 827; "a type of scandal,” 69 ib. 546; or that the figures supplied by a minister were “ gerrymandered," 147 ib. 242. But not "calumnious," 201 H. D. 3 s. 1455 ; “humbug," 138 Parl. Deb. 4 s. 870; see also 211 H. D. 3 s. 852; 212 ib. 222. 1653 ; 213 ib. 750; 219 ib. 589; 223 ib. 1015. Mr. Plimsoll's case, « villains," 22nd July, 1875; 225 ib. 1826 ; 226 ib. 178 ; “impertinence," 230 ib. 863; also 320 ib. 763.

3 298 ib. 101 ; 299 ib. 1792; 302 ib. 230; 308 ib. 937; 313 ib. 303.

28th Feb. 1890, 341 ib. 1570. 5 12 L. J. 31; Mirror of Parl. 1833, p. 2855.


On the 10th December, 1766, notice was taken of some Words of words that had passed between the Duke of Richmond and heat. the Earl of Chatham ; upon which they were required by the house to declare, upon their honour, " that they would not pursue any further resentment.” 1

The Lords also, to prevent quarrels in debate between Lords. their members, have ordered, by standing order No. 29, that a lord who conceives himself to have received an affront or injury from another member within the precincts of the house, shall appeal to the Lords in Parliament for his reparation; or shall, if he declines the justice of the house, undergo their severe censure.

Sometimes the Lords have extended this principle to the prevention of quarrels which have arisen out of the house. On the 6th November, 1780, the Lords being informed that the Earl of Pomfret had sent a challenge to the Duke of Grafton, upon a matter unconnected with the debates or proceedings of Parliament, declared the earl “guilty of a high contempt of this house," and committed him to the

Tower.3 Offensive The House of Commons will insist upon all offensive Commons. uttered in words being withdrawn, and upon an ample apology being committee,

& made, which shall satisfy both the house and the member Offensive to whom offence has been given. If the apology be refused, words dealt

u or if the offended member decline to express his satisfac

tion, the house takes immediate measures for preventing p. 99.

the quarrel from being pursued further, by committing
both the members to the custody of the Serjeant; whence
they are not released until they have submitted themselves
to the house, and given assurance that they will not
engage in hostile proceedings."

In 1770, words of heat having arisen between Mr. Fox



with by Parlia. ment, see

1 31 L. J. 448.
? 16 ib. 378; Earl Rivers, 8th Feb.


3 36 ib. 191.

* 78 C. J. 224; 96 ib. 401 ; 103 ib. 442. 443 ; 107 ib. 143. Sir R. Peel and the O'Donoghue, 1862, 117 ib.

64; 165 H. D. 3 s. 617; 167 ib. 854. Sir R. Peel and Mr. Maguire, 11th May, 1866, 183 ib. 801.

58 H. D. 2 s. 1091 ; Lord Althorp and Mr. Sheil, 5th Feb. 1834, 89 C. J. 9. 11; 91 ib. 484. 485; 92 ib. 270; 93 ib. 657. 660.


and Mr. Wedderburn, the former rose to leave the house, Chapter
upon which the Speaker ordered the Serjeant to close all -
the doors, so that neither Mr. Fox nor Mr. Wedderburn
should go out till they had promised the house that no
further notice should be taken of what had happened. If
words of heat arise in a committee of the whole house, they
are reported by the chairman, and the house interposes its

authority to restrain any hostile proceedings.?
Challenges The Commons will also interfere to prevent quarrels
quarrels. between members, arising from personal misunderstanding

in a select committee, as in the case of Sir Frederick
Trench and Mr. Rigby Wason, on the 10th June, 1836.
One of those gentlemen, on refusing to assure the house
that he would not accept a challenge sent from abroad, was
placed in custody; and the other, by whom the challenge
was expected to be sent, was also ordered to be taken;
nor were either of them released until they had given the
house satisfactory assurances of their quarrel being at
an end.

The sending a challenge by one member to another, in
consequence of words spoken by him in his place in Parlia-
ment, is a breach of privilege, and will be dealt with
accordingly, unless a full and ample apology be offered to
the house. But it does not appear that the Speaker or
the house would interfere to prevent a quarrel from being
proceeded with, where it had arisen from a private mis-
understanding, and not from words spoken in debate, or
in any proceedings of the house or of a committee. In
such cases, if any interference should be deemed neces-
sary, information would probably be given to the police.
But in 1701, Mr. Mason, a member, having sent a

1 MS. Officers and Usages of the House of Commons, 1805, p. 138.

? 106 C. J. 313.

3 91 ib. 464. 468; 34 H. D. 3 s. 410. 486.

Case of Mr. Roebuck and Mr. Somers, 16th June, 1845, 100 C. J. 589 ; 81 H. D. 3 s. 601. Notice taken of a challenge sent to a member,

on remarks made outside the house, which touched proceedings in the house, 31st May, 1883, 138 C. J. 232. In 1798, the Speaker did not interfere to prevent the duel between Mr. Pitt and Mr. Tierney : but went to Putney, where it was fought, 1 Lord Sidmouth's Life, 204. 206.

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