A Prime Minister is the head of a cabinet and the leader of the ministers in the executive branch of government in a parliamentary or semi-presidential system. A prime minister is not a head of state or chief executive officer of their respective nation, rather they are a head of government, serving under a monarch in a hybrid of aristocratic and democratic government forms. In parliamentary systems fashioned after the Westminster system, the prime minister is the presiding and actual head of government and head of the executive branch. In such systems, the head of state or the head of state's official representative holds a ceremonial position, although with reserve powers. In many systems, the prime minister selects and may dismiss other members of the cabinet, allocates posts to members within the government. In most systems, the prime minister is chairman of the cabinet. In a minority of systems, notably in semi-presidential systems of government, a prime minister is the official, appointed to manage the civil service and execute the directives of the head of state.
The prime minister is but not always, a member of the Legislature or the Lower House thereof and is expected with other ministers to ensure the passage of bills through the legislature. In some monarchies the monarch may exercise executive powers that are constitutionally vested in the crown and may be exercised without the approval of parliament; as well as being head of government, a prime minister may have other roles or posts—the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, for example, is First Lord of the Treasury and Minister for the Civil Service. Prime ministers may take other ministerial posts. For example, during the Second World War, Winston Churchill was Minister of Defence and in the current cabinet of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu serves as Minister of Communications, Foreign Affairs, Regional Cooperation and Interior; the term prime minister in its French form, premier ministre, is attested in 17th Century sources referring to Cardinal Richelieu after he was named to head the royal council in 1624.
The title was however informal and used alongside the informal principal ministre d'État more as a job description. After 1661, Louis XIV and his descendants refused to allow one of their ministers to be more important than the others, so the term was not in use; the term prime minister in the sense that we know it originated in the 18th century in the United Kingdom when members of parliament disparagingly used the title in reference to Sir Robert Walpole. During the whole of the 18th Century, Britain was involved in a prolonged conflict with France, periodically bursting into all-out war, Britons took outspoken pride in their "Liberty" as contrasted to the "Tyranny" of French Absolute Monarchy. Over time, the title became honorific and remains so in the 21st century; the monarchs of England and the United Kingdom had ministers in whom they placed special trust and who were regarded as the head of the government. Examples were Thomas Cromwell under Henry VIII; these ministers held a variety of formal posts, but were known as "the minister", the "chief minister", the "first minister" and the "prime minister".
The power of these ministers depended on the personal favour of the monarch. Although managing the parliament was among the necessary skills of holding high office, they did not depend on a parliamentary majority for their power. Although there was a cabinet, it was appointed by the monarch, the monarch presided over its meetings; when the monarch grew tired of a first minister, he or she could be dismissed, or worse: Cromwell was executed and Clarendon driven into exile when they lost favour. Kings sometimes divided power between two or more ministers to prevent one minister from becoming too powerful. Late in Anne's reign, for example, the Tory ministers Harley and Viscount Bolingbroke shared power. In the mid 17th century, after the English Civil War, Parliament strengthened its position relative to the monarch gained more power through the Glorious Revolution of 1688 and passage of the Bill of Rights in 1689; the monarch could no longer establish any law or impose any tax without its permission and thus the House of Commons became a part of the government.
It is at this point. A tipping point in the evolution of the prime ministership came with the death of Anne in 1714 and the accession of George I to the throne. George spoke no English, spent much of his time at his home in Hanover, had neither knowledge of, nor interest in, the details of English government. In these circumstances it was inevitable that the king's first minister would become the de facto head of the government. From 1721 this was the Whig politician Robert Walpole. Walpole chaired cabinet meetings, appointed all the other ministers, dispensed the royal patronage and packed the House of Commons with his supporters. Under Walpole, the doctrine of cabinet solidarity developed. Walpole required that no minister other than himself have private dealings with the king, that when the cabinet had agreed on a policy, all ministers must defend it in public, or resign; as a prime minister, Lord Melbourne, said, "It matters not what we say, gentlemen, so long as we all say the same thing."
Petition of Right
The Petition of Right is a major English constitutional document that sets out specific liberties of the subject that the king is prohibited from infringing. Passed on 7 June 1628, the Petition contains restrictions on non-Parliamentary taxation, forced billeting of soldiers, imprisonment without cause, the use of martial law. Following disputes between Parliament and King Charles I over the execution of the Thirty Years' War, Parliament refused to grant subsidies to support the war effort, leading to Charles gathering "forced loans" without Parliamentary approval and arbitrarily imprisoning those who refused to pay. Moreover, the war footing of the nation led to the forced billeting of soldiers within the homes of private citizens, the declaration of martial law over large swathes of the country. In response, the House of Commons prepared a set of four Resolutions, decrying these actions and restating the validity of Magna Carta and the legal requirement of habeas corpus; these were rejected by Charles, who announced that Parliament would be dissolved.
Accordingly, a committee under Sir Edward Coke drafted such a petition, it was passed by the Commons on 8 May and sent to the House of Lords. After three weeks of debates and conferences between the two chambers, the Petition of Right was ratified by both houses on the 26th and 27 May. Following additional debates in which the King restricted the right of the Commons to speak, he bowed to the pressure. Unhappy with the method chosen, both houses joined together and demanded the King ratify the Petition, which he did on 7 June. Despite debates over its legal status, the Petition of Right was influential. Domestically, the Petition is seen as "one of England's most famous constitutional documents", of equal value to the Magna Carta and Bill of Rights 1689. In a period in which Charles's main protection from the Commons was the House of Lords, the willingness of both chambers to work together marked a new stage in the constitutional crisis that would lead to the English Civil War; the Petition remains in force in the United Kingdom and, thanks to Imperial legislation, many parts of the Commonwealth of Nations including Australia and New Zealand.
Internationally, it helped influence the Massachusetts Body of Liberties, is seen as a predecessor to the Third, Fifth and Seventh amendments to the Constitution of the United States. On 27 March 1625, King James I of England died, was succeeded by his son, who became Charles I. Along with the throne, Charles inherited the Thirty Years' War, in which Christian IV of Denmark and Frederick V, Elector Palatine, married to Charles's sister Elizabeth, were attempting to take back their hereditary lands and titles from the Habsburg Monarchy. James had caused significant financial problems with his attempts to support Christian and Frederick, it was expected that Charles would be more amenable to prosecuting the war responsibly. After he summoned a new Parliament to meet in April 1625, it became clear; the House of Commons refused, instead passed two bills granting him only £112,000. In addition, rather than renewing the customs due from Tonnage and Poundage for the entire life of the monarch, traditional, the Commons only voted them in for one year.
Because of this, the House of Lords rejected the bill, leaving Charles without any money to provide for the war effort. Displeased with this, Charles adjourned it on 11 July, but finding himself in need of money recalled the Members on 1 August, when they met in Oxford. Not only did the Commons continue to refuse to provide money, led by Robert Phelips and Sir Edward Coke they began investigating the Duke of Buckingham. Buckingham, Charles's favourite, was in charge of prosecuting the war, with it going badly the Commons inquired into Buckingham's use of previous grants, various controversies within the admiralty; this was a pretext to impeachment, Charles reacted by dissolving Parliament less than two weeks on 12 August. By 1627, with England still at war, Charles decided to raise "forced loans". Anyone who refused to pay would be imprisoned without trial, if they resisted, sent before the Privy Council. Although the judiciary refused to endorse these loans, they succumbed to pressure after the Chief Justice of the King's Bench, Sir Randolph Crewe, was dismissed.
For refusing to contribute to the forced loan, over 70 gentlemen were arbitrarily jailed, without trial or charges brought against them. Five of them, Sir Thomas Darnell, Sir John Corbet, Sir Walter Erle, Sir John Heveningham and Sir Edmund Hampden, attempted to gain their freedom, petitioning the Court of King's Bench for a writ of habeas corpus; these were awarded on 3 November 1627, with the court ordering the bailiffs to present these prisoners to the King's Bench for examination by 8 November. None of the prisoners were presented, because the bailiffs were unable to determine what they were charged with; this led to the Five Knights' Case, known as Darnell's Case. Darnell, unnerved by the situation, ceased pursuing his freedom, the other four secured writs instead, represented by John Bramston, Henry Calthorp and John Selden; the judges denied the defendants bail, concluding that if no charges had been brought, "the could not be freed as the offence was too dangerous for public discussion".
The European Union is a political and economic union of 28 member states that are located in Europe. It has an area of an estimated population of about 513 million; the EU has developed an internal single market through a standardised system of laws that apply in all member states in those matters, only those matters, where members have agreed to act as one. EU policies aim to ensure the free movement of people, goods and capital within the internal market, enact legislation in justice and home affairs and maintain common policies on trade, agriculture and regional development. For travel within the Schengen Area, passport controls have been abolished. A monetary union was established in 1999 and came into full force in 2002 and is composed of 19 EU member states which use the euro currency; the EU and European citizenship were established when the Maastricht Treaty came into force in 1993. The EU traces its origins to the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community, established by the 1951 Treaty of Paris and 1957 Treaty of Rome.
The original members of what came to be known as the European Communities were the Inner Six: Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, West Germany. The Communities and its successors have grown in size by the accession of new member states and in power by the addition of policy areas to its remit; the latest major amendment to the constitutional basis of the EU, the Treaty of Lisbon, came into force in 2009. While no member state has left the EU or its antecedent organisations, the United Kingdom signified the intention to leave after a membership referendum in June 2016 and is negotiating its withdrawal. Covering 7.3% of the world population, the EU in 2017 generated a nominal gross domestic product of 19.670 trillion US dollars, constituting 24.6% of global nominal GDP. Additionally, all 28 EU countries have a high Human Development Index, according to the United Nations Development Programme. In 2012, the EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Through the Common Foreign and Security Policy, the EU has developed a role in external relations and defence.
The union maintains permanent diplomatic missions throughout the world and represents itself at the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the G7 and the G20. Because of its global influence, the European Union has been described as an emerging superpower. During the centuries following the fall of Rome in 476, several European States viewed themselves as translatio imperii of the defunct Roman Empire: the Frankish Empire and the Holy Roman Empire were thereby attempts to resurrect Rome in the West; this political philosophy of a supra-national rule over the continent, similar to the example of the ancient Roman Empire, resulted in the early Middle Ages in the concept of a renovatio imperii, either in the forms of the Reichsidee or the religiously inspired Imperium Christianum. Medieval Christendom and the political power of the Papacy are cited as conducive to European integration and unity. In the oriental parts of the continent, the Russian Tsardom, the Empire, declared Moscow to be Third Rome and inheritor of the Eastern tradition after the fall of Constantinople in 1453.
The gap between Greek East and Latin West had been widened by the political scission of the Roman Empire in the 4th century and the Great Schism of 1054. Pan-European political thought emerged during the 19th century, inspired by the liberal ideas of the French and American Revolutions after the demise of Napoléon's Empire. In the decades following the outcomes of the Congress of Vienna, ideals of European unity flourished across the continent in the writings of Wojciech Jastrzębowski, Giuseppe Mazzini or Theodore de Korwin Szymanowski; the term United States of Europe was used at that time by Victor Hugo during a speech at the International Peace Congress held in Paris in 1849: A day will come when all nations on our continent will form a European brotherhood... A day will come when we shall see... the United States of America and the United States of Europe face to face, reaching out for each other across the seas. During the interwar period, the consciousness that national markets in Europe were interdependent though confrontational, along with the observation of a larger and growing US market on the other side of the ocean, nourished the urge for the economic integration of the continent.
In 1920, advocating the creation of a European economic union, British economist John Maynard Keynes wrote that "a Free Trade Union should be established... to impose no protectionist tariffs whatever against the produce of other members of the Union." During the same decade, Richard von Coudenhove-Kalergi, one of the first to imagine of a modern political union of Europe, founded the Pan-Europa Movement. His ideas influenced his contemporaries, among which Prime Minister of France Aristide Briand. In 1929, the latter gave a speech in favour of a European Union before the assembly of the League of Nations, precursor of the United Nations. In a radio address in March 1943, with war still raging, Britain's leader Sir Winston Churchill spoke warmly of "restoring the true greatness of Europe" once victory had been achieved, mused on the post-war creation of a "Council of Europe" which would bring the European nations together to build peace. After World War II, European integration was seen as an antidote to the extreme nationalism which had devastated the continent.
In a speech delivered on 19
Pantomime is a type of musical comedy stage production designed for family entertainment. It was developed in England and is performed throughout the United Kingdom, Ireland and in other English-speaking countries during the Christmas and New Year season. Modern pantomime includes songs, slapstick comedy and dancing, it employs gender-crossing actors and combines topical humour with a story more or less based on a well-known fairy tale, fable or folk tale. It is a participatory form of theatre, in which the audience is expected to sing along with certain parts of the music and shout out phrases to the performers. Pantomime has a long theatrical history in Western culture dating back to classical theatre, it developed from the 16th century commedia dell'arte tradition of Italy and other European and British stage traditions, such as 17th-century masques and music hall. An important part of the pantomime, until the late 19th century, was the harlequinade. Outside Britain, the word "pantomime" is understood to mean miming, rather than the theatrical form discussed here.
The word pantomime was adopted from the Latin word pantomimus, which in turn derives from the Greek word παντόμιμος, consisting of παντο- meaning "all", μῖμος, meaning a dancer who acted all the roles or all the story. The Roman pantomime drew upon the Greek tragedy and other Greek genres from its inception, although the art was instituted in Rome and little is known of it in pre-Roman Greece; the English word came to be applied to the performance itself. According to a lost oration by Aelius Aristides, the pantomime was known for its erotic content and the effeminacy of its dancing. Roman pantomime was a production based upon myth or legend, for a solo male dancer—clad in a long silk tunic and a short mantle, used as a "prop"—accompanied by a sung libretto rendered by a singer or chorus. Music was supplied by flute and the pulse of an iron-shod shoe called a scabellum. Performances might be in a private household, with minimal personnel, or else lavish theatrical productions involving a large orchestra and chorus and sometimes an ancillary actor.
The dancer danced all the roles, relying on masks, stock poses and gestures and a hand-language so complex and expressive that the pantomime's hands were compared to an eloquent mouth. Pantomime differed from mime by its more artistic nature and relative lack of farce and coarse humour, though these were not absent from some productions. Roman pantomime was immensely popular from the end of the first century BC until the end of the sixth century AD, a form of entertainment that spread throughout the empire where, because of its wordless nature, it did more than any other art to foster knowledge of the myths and Roman legends that formed its subject-matter – tales such as those of the love of Venus and Mars and of Dido and Aeneas – while in Italy its chief exponents were celebrities the protegés of influential citizens, whose followers wore badges proclaiming their allegiance and engaged in street-fights with rival groups, while its accompanying songs became known. Yet, because of the limits imposed upon Roman citizens' dance, the populism of its song-texts and other factors, the art was as much despised as adored, its practitioners were slaves or freedmen.
Because of the low status and the disappearance of its libretti, the Roman pantomime received little modern scholarly attention until the late 20th century, despite its great influence upon Roman culture as perceived in Roman art, in statues of famous dancers, graffiti and literature. After the renaissance of classical culture, Roman pantomime was a decisive influence upon modern European concert dance, helping to transform ballet from a mere entertainment, a display of technical virtuosity, into the dramatic ballet d'action, it became an antecedent which, through writers and ballet-masters of the 17th and 18th centuries such as Claude-François Ménestrier, John Weaver, Jean-Georges Noverre and Gasparo Angiolini, earned it respectability and attested to the capability of dance to render complex stories and express human emotion. In the Middle Ages, the Mummers Play was a traditional English folk play, based loosely on the Saint George and the Dragon legend performed during Christmas gatherings, which contained the origin of many of the archetypal elements of the pantomime, such as stage fights, coarse humour and fantastic creatures, gender role reversal, good defeating evil.
Precursors of pantomime included the masque, which grew in pomp and spectacle from the 15th to the 17th centuries. The development of English pantomime was strongly influenced by the continental commedia dell'arte, a form of popular theatre that arose in Italy in the Early Modern Period; this was a "comedy of professional artists" travelling from province to province in Italy and France, who improvised and told comic stories that held lessons for the crowd, changing the main character depending on where they were performing. Each "scenario" used some of the same stock characters; these included the innamorati. Italian masque performances in the 17th century sometimes included the Harlequin character. In the 17th century, adaptations of the commedia characters became familiar in English entertainments. From these, the standard E
Kingdom of Great Britain
The Kingdom of Great Britain called Great Britain, was a sovereign state in western Europe from 1 May 1707 to 31 December 1800. The state came into being following the Treaty of Union in 1706, ratified by the Acts of Union 1707, which united the kingdoms of England and Scotland to form a single kingdom encompassing the whole island of Great Britain and its outlying islands, with the exception of the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands; the unitary state was governed by a single parliament and government, based in Westminster. The former kingdoms had been in personal union since James VI of Scotland became King of England and King of Ireland in 1603 following the death of Elizabeth I, bringing about the "Union of the Crowns". After the accession of George I to the throne of Great Britain in 1714, the kingdom was in a personal union with the Electorate of Hanover; the early years of the unified kingdom were marked by Jacobite risings which ended in defeat for the Stuart cause at Culloden in 1746.
In 1763, victory in the Seven Years' War led to the dominance of the British Empire, to become the foremost global power for over a century and grew to become the largest empire in history. The Kingdom of Great Britain was replaced by the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on 1 January 1801 with the Acts of Union 1800; the name Britain descends from the Latin name for the island of Great Britain, Britannia or Brittānia, the land of the Britons via the Old French Bretaigne and Middle English Bretayne, Breteyne. The term Great Britain was first used in 1474; the use of the word "Great" before "Britain" originates in the French language, which uses Bretagne for both Britain and Brittany. French therefore distinguishes between the two by calling Britain la Grande Bretagne, a distinction, transferred into English; the Treaty of Union and the subsequent Acts of Union state that England and Scotland were to be "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain", as such "Great Britain" was the official name of the state, as well as being used in titles such as "Parliament of Great Britain".
Both the Acts and the Treaty describe the country as "One Kingdom" and a "United Kingdom", which has led some much publications into the error of treating the "United Kingdom" as a name before it came into being in 1801. The websites of the Scottish Parliament, the BBC, others, including the Historical Association, refer to the state created on 1 May 1707 as the United Kingdom of Great Britain; the term United Kingdom was sometimes used during the 18th century to describe the state, but was not its name. The kingdoms of England and Scotland, both in existence from the 9th century, were separate states until 1707. However, they had come into a personal union in 1603, when James VI of Scotland became king of England under the name of James I; this Union of the Crowns under the House of Stuart meant that the whole of the island of Great Britain was now ruled by a single monarch, who by virtue of holding the English crown ruled over the Kingdom of Ireland. Each of the three kingdoms maintained laws.
Various smaller islands were in the king's domain, including the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. This disposition changed when the Acts of Union 1707 came into force, with a single unified Crown of Great Britain and a single unified parliament. Ireland remained formally separate, with its own parliament, until the Acts of Union 1800; the Union of 1707 provided for a Protestant-only succession to the throne in accordance with the English Act of Settlement of 1701. The Act of Settlement required that the heir to the English throne be a descendant of the Electress Sophia of Hanover and not be a Catholic. Legislative power was vested in the Parliament of Great Britain, which replaced both the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland. In practice it was a continuation of the English parliament, sitting at the same location in Westminster, expanded to include representation from Scotland; as with the former Parliament of England and the modern Parliament of the United Kingdom, the Parliament of Great Britain was formally constituted of three elements: the House of Commons, the House of Lords, the Crown.
The right of the English peerage to sit in the House of Lords remained unchanged, while the disproportionately large Scottish peerage was permitted to send only 16 representative peers, elected from amongst their number for the life of each parliament. The members of the former English House of Commons continued as members of the British House of Commons, but as a reflection of the relative tax bases of the two countries the number of Scottish representatives was reduced to 45. Newly created peers in the Peerage of Great Britain were given the automatic right to sit in the Lords. Despite the end of a separate parliament for Scotland, it retained its own laws and system of courts, As its own established Presbyterian Church, control over its own schools; the social structure was hierarchical, the same elite remain in control after 1707. Scotland continued to have its own excellent universities, with the strong intellectual community in Edinburgh, The Scottish Enlightenment had a major impact on British and European thinking.
As a result of Poynings' Law of 1495, the Parliament of Ireland was subordinate to the Parliament of England, after 1707 to the Parliament of Great Britain. The Westminster parliament's Declaratory Act 1719 (also called the Dependency of Ireland
Victoria was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. On 1 May 1876, she adopted the additional title of Empress of India. Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke and the King died in 1820, Victoria was raised under close supervision by her mother, Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, she inherited the throne at the age of 18, after her father's three elder brothers had all died, leaving no surviving legitimate children. The United Kingdom was an established constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign held little direct political power. Victoria attempted to influence government policy and ministerial appointments. Victoria married her first cousin Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840, their nine children married into royal and noble families across the continent, tying them together and earning her the sobriquet "the grandmother of Europe". After Albert's death in 1861, Victoria avoided public appearances.
As a result of her seclusion, republicanism temporarily gained strength, but in the latter half of her reign, her popularity recovered. Her Golden and Diamond Jubilees were times of public celebration, her reign of 63 years and seven months was longer than that of any of her predecessors and is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, political and military change within the United Kingdom, was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire, she was the last British monarch of the House of Hanover. Her son and successor, Edward VII, initiated the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the line of his father. Victoria's father was Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of the reigning King of the United Kingdom, George III; until 1817, Edward's niece, Princess Charlotte of Wales, was the only legitimate grandchild of George III. Her death in 1817 precipitated a succession crisis that brought pressure on the Duke of Kent and his unmarried brothers to marry and have children.
In 1818 he married Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, a widowed German princess with two children—Carl and Feodora —by her first marriage to the Prince of Leiningen. Her brother Leopold was Princess Charlotte's widower; the Duke and Duchess of Kent's only child, was born at 4.15 a.m. on 24 May 1819 at Kensington Palace in London. Victoria was christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Charles Manners-Sutton, on 24 June 1819 in the Cupola Room at Kensington Palace, she was baptised Alexandrina after one of her godparents, Emperor Alexander I of Russia, Victoria, after her mother. Additional names proposed by her parents—Georgina and Augusta—were dropped on the instructions of Kent's eldest brother, the Prince Regent. At birth, Victoria was fifth in the line of succession after the four eldest sons of George III: George, the Prince Regent; the Prince Regent had no surviving children, the Duke of York had no children. The Duke of Clarence and the Duke of Kent married on the same day in 1818, but both of Clarence's legitimate daughters died as infants.
The first of these was Princess Charlotte, born and died on 27 March 1819, two months before Victoria was born. Victoria's father died in January 1820. A week her grandfather died and was succeeded by his eldest son as George IV. Victoria was third in line to the throne after York and Clarence. Clarence's second daughter was Princess Elizabeth of Clarence who lived for twelve weeks from 10 December 1820 to 4 March 1821 and, while Elizabeth lived, Victoria was fourth in line; the Duke of York died in 1827. When George IV died in 1830, he was succeeded by his next surviving brother, Clarence, as William IV, Victoria became heir presumptive; the Regency Act 1830 made special provision for Victoria's mother to act as regent in case William died while Victoria was still a minor. King William distrusted the Duchess's capacity to be regent, in 1836 he declared in her presence that he wanted to live until Victoria's 18th birthday, so that a regency could be avoided. Victoria described her childhood as "rather melancholy".
Her mother was protective, Victoria was raised isolated from other children under the so-called "Kensington System", an elaborate set of rules and protocols devised by the Duchess and her ambitious and domineering comptroller, Sir John Conroy, rumoured to be the Duchess's lover. The system prevented the princess from meeting people whom her mother and Conroy deemed undesirable, was designed to render her weak and dependent upon them; the Duchess avoided the court because she was scandalised by the presence of King William's illegitimate children. Victoria shared a bedroom with her mother every night, studied with private tutors to a regular timetable, spent her play-hours with her dolls and her King Charles Spaniel, Dash, her lessons included French, German and Latin, but she spoke only English at home. In 1830, the Duchess of Kent and Conroy took Victoria across the centre of England to visit the Malvern Hills, stopping at towns and great country houses along the way. Similar journeys to oth
Parliament of Ireland
The Parliament of Ireland was the legislature of the Lordship of Ireland, the Kingdom of Ireland, from 1297 until 1800. It was modelled on the Parliament of England and from 1537 comprised two chambers: the House of Commons and the House of Lords; the Lords were members of bishops. The Commons was directly elected, albeit on a restricted franchise. Parliaments met at various places in Leinster and Munster, but latterly always in Dublin: in Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin Castle, Chichester House, the Blue Coat School, a purpose-built Parliament House on College Green; the main purpose of parliament was to approve taxes that were levied by and for the Dublin Castle administration. Those who would pay the bulk of taxation, the clergy and landowners comprised the members. Only the "English of Ireland" were represented until the first Gaelic lords summoned during the 16th-century Tudor reconquest. Under Poynings' Law of 1495, all Acts of Parliament had to be pre-approved by the Irish Privy Council and English Privy Council.
Parliament supported the Irish Reformation and Catholics were excluded from membership and voting in penal times. The Constitution of 1782 amended Poynings' Law to allow the Irish Parliament to initiate legislation. In 1793 Catholics were re-enfranchised; the Acts of Union 1800 merged the Kingdom of Ireland and Kingdom of Great Britain into the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The parliament was merged with that of Great Britain. After the 12th-century Norman invasion of Ireland, administration of the Anglo-Norman Lordship of Ireland was modelled on that of the Kingdom of England. Magna Carta was extended in 1217 in the Great Charter of Ireland; as in England, parliament evolved out of the Magnum Concilium "great council" summoned by the king's viceroy, attended by the council and prelates. Membership was based on fealty to the king, the preservation of the king's peace, so the fluctuating number of autonomous Irish Gaelic kings were outside of the system; the earliest known parliament met at Kilkea Castle near Castledermot, County Kildare on 18 June 1264, with only prelates and magnates attending.
Elected representatives are first attested in 1297 and continually from the 14th century. In 1297, counties were first represented by elected knights of the shire. In 1299, towns were represented. From the 14th century a distinction from the English parliament was that deliberations on church funding were held in Parliament rather than in Convocation; the separation of the individually summoned lords from the elected commons had developed by the fifteenth century. The clerical proctors elected by the lower clergy of each diocese formed a separate house or estate in until 1537, when they were expelled for their opposition to the Irish Reformation; the 14th and 15th centuries saw shrinking numbers of those loyal to the crown, the growing power of landed families, the increasing inability to carry out judicial rulings, that all reduced the crown's presence in Ireland. Alongside this reduced control grew a "Gaelic resurgence", political as well as cultural. In turn this resulted in considerable numbers of the Hiberno-Norman Old English nobility joining the independent Gaelic nobles in asserting their feudal independence.
The crown's power shrank to a small fortified enclave around Dublin known as the Pale. The Parliament thereafter became the forum for the Pale community until the 16th century. Unable to implement and exercise the authority of the Parliament or the Crown's rule outside of this environ, under the attack of raids by the Gaelic Irish and independent Hiberno-Norman nobles, the Palesmen themselves encouraged the Kings of England to take a more direct role in the affairs of Ireland. Geographic distance, the lack of attention by the Crown because of the Hundred Years' War and the Wars of the Roses, the larger power of the Gaelic clans, all reduced the effectiveness of the Irish Parliament, thus worried that the Irish Parliament was being overawed by powerful landed families in Ireland like the Earl of Kildare into passing laws that pursued the agendas of the different dynastic factions in the country, in 1494, the Parliament encouraged the passing of Poynings' Law which subordinated Irish Parliament to the English one.
The role of the Parliament changed after 1541, when Henry VIII declared the Kingdom of Ireland and embarked on the Tudor conquest of Ireland. Despite an era which featured royal concentration of power and decreasing feudal power throughout the rest of Europe, King Henry VIII over-ruled earlier court rulings putting families and lands under attainder and recognised the privileges of the Gaelic nobles, thereby expanding the crown's de jure authority. In return for recognising the crown's authority under the new Kingdom of Ireland, the Gaelic-Anglo-Irish lords had their position legalised and were entitled to attend the Irish Parliament as equals under the policy of surrender and regrant; the Reformation in Ireland introduced in stages by the Tudor monarchs did not take hold in most of the country, did not affect the operation of parliament until after the papal bull Regnans in Excelsis of 1570. In 1537, the Irish Parliament approved both the Act of Supremacy, acknowledging Henry VIII as head of the Church and the dissolution of the monasteries.