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PREROGATIVE OF PARDON
7 and 8 Geo. IV. Cap. 28, 1827.
An Act for further improving the Administration of Justice in Criminal Cases in England.
XIII. And it be it declared and enacted, That when the King's Majesty shall be pleased to extend His Royal mercy to any offenders convicted of any Felony punishable with Death or otherwise, and by Warrant under His Royal Sign Manual, countersigned by one of His principal Secretaries of State, shall grant to such offenders either a free or a conditional Pardon, the Discharge of such offenders out of Custody in the case of a free Pardon, and the Performance of the condition in the Case of a conditional Pardon, shall have the Effect of a Pardon under the Great Seal for such Offenders, as to the Felony for which such Pardon shall be so granted: Provided always, that no free Pardon, nor any such Discharge in Consequence thereof, nor any conditional Pardon, nor the Performance of the Condition thereof, in any of the Cases aforesaid, shall prevent or mitigate the Punishment to which the Offenders might otherwise be lawfully sentenced on a subsequent Conviction for any Felony committed after the granting of any such Pardon.
(By 27 Hen. VIII. c. 24, § i. the prerogative of pardon is vested solely in the Crown. All pardons passed under the Great Seal. By this Act a pardon may be granted by sign-manual warrant, countersigned by a Secretary of State; but constructively this does not apply to treason, murder, or misdemeanour. See Hawkins, P.C. ii. c. 37; Chitty, Prerogative of the Crown.)
THE REPEAL OF THE TEST AND
9 Geo. IV. Cap. 17, 1828.1
An Act for repealing so much of several acts as imposes the necessity of receiving the sacrament of the Lord's Supper as a qualification for certain offices and employments.
Whereas an act2 was passed in the thirteenth year of the reign of King Charles the Second, intituled An act for the well governing and regulating of corporations: and whereas another acts was passed in the twenty-fifth year of the reign of King Charles the Second, intituled An act for preventing dangers which may happen from popish recusants: And whereas another act was passed in the sixteenth year of the reign of King George the Second, intituled An act to indemnify persons who have omitted to qualify themselves for offices and employments within the time limited by law, and for allowing further time for that purpose; and also for amending so much of an Act made in the twenty-fifth year of the reign of King Charles the Second, intituled, 'An act for preventing dangers which may happen from popish recusants' as relates to the time for receiving the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper now limited by the said act: and whereas it is expedient that so much of the said several acts of parliament as imposes the necessity of taking the said Sacrament of the Lord's Supper according to the rites or usage of the Church of England, for the purposes therein respectively mentioned, should be repealed: Be it therefore enacted. . . That so much and such parts of the said several acts passed in the thirteenth and twenty-fifth years of the reign of King Charles the Second, and of the said act passed in the sixteenth year of the reign of King George the Second, as require the person or persons in the said acts respectively described to take or receive the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper according to the rites or usage of the Church of England, for the several purposes
1 Repealed by 34 and 35 Vict. c. 48, 1871 ("The Promissory Oaths Act").
2 13 Cha. II. St. 2, c. 1.
325 Cha. II. c. 2.
4 16 Geo. II. c. 30.
6 16 Geo. II. c. 30.
therein expressed, or to deliver a certificate, or to make proof of the truth of such his or their receiving the said sacrament in manner aforesaid, or as impose upon any such person or persons any penalty, forfeiture, incapacity, or disability whatsoever for or by reason of any neglect or omission to take or receive the said Sacrament, within the respective periods and in the manner in the said acts respectively provided in that behalf, shall, from and immediately after the passing of this act, be and the same are hereby repealed.
II. And whereas the protestant episcopal Church of England and Ireland, and the doctrine, discipline, and government thereof, and the protestant presbyterian Church of Scotland, and the doctrine, discipline and government thereof, are by the laws of this realm severally established, permanently and inviolably: . . . Be it therefore enacted, That every person who shall hereafter be placed, elected, or chosen in or to any office of mayor, alderman, recorder, bailiff, town clerk, or common councilman, or in or to any office of magistracy, or place, trust, or employment relating to the government of any city, corporation, borough, or cinque port within England and Wales or the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed, shall within one calendar month next before or upon his admission into any of the aforesaid offices or trusts, make and subscribe the declaration following:
'I A. B. do solemnly and sincerely, in the presence of God, profess, testify, and declare, upon the true faith of a Christian, That I will never exercise any power, authority or influence I may possess by virtue of the office of to injure or weaken the Protestant Church as it is by law established in England, or to disturb the said Church, or the bishops and clergy of the said Church, in the possession of any rights or privileges to which such Church, or the said bishops and clergy, are or may be by law entitled.'
III. And be it enacted, That the said declaration shall be made, as aforesaid, in the presence of such person or persons respectively, who, by the charters or usages of the said respective cities, corporations, boroughs, and cinque ports, ought to administer the oath for the due execution of the said offices or places respectively, and in default of such, in the presence of two justices of the peace of the respective counties, ridings, divisions, or franchises, wherein the said cities, corporations, boroughs, and cinque ports are; which said declaration shall either be entered in a book, roll, or other record, to be kept for that purpose, or shall be filed amongst the records of the city, corporation, borough or cinque port.
IV. And be it enacted, That if any person placed, elected, or chosen into any of the aforesaid offices or places, shall omit or neglect to make and subscribe the said declaration in manner above mentioned, such placing, election, or choice shall be void. . . .
V. And be it further enacted, That every person who shall hereafter be admitted into any office or employment, or who shall accept from His Majesty, his heirs or successors, any patent, grant, or commission, and who by his admittance into such office or employment or place of trust, or by his acceptance of such patent, grant, or commission, or by the receipt of any pay, salary, fee, or wages by reason thereof, would, by the laws in force immediately before the passing of this act have been required to take the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper according to the rites or usage of the Church of England, shall, within six calendar months after his admission to such office, employment, or place of trust, or his acceptance of such patent, grant, or commission, make and subscribe the aforesaid declaration, or in default thereof his appointment to such office, employment or place of trust, and such patent, grant, or commission, shall be wholly void.
VI. And be it further enacted, That the aforesaid declaration shall be made and subscribed in His Majesty's High Court of Chancery, or in the Court of King's Bench, or at the Quarter Sessions of the county or place where the person so required to make the same shall reside; and the court in which such declaration shall be so made and subscribed shall cause the same to be preserved among the records of the said court.
VII. Provided always, That no naval officer below the rank of rear admiral, and no military officer below the rank of major general in the army or colonel in the militia, shall be required to make or subscribe the said declaration, in respect of his naval or military commission; and that no commissioner of customs, excise, stamps, or taxes, or any person holding any of the offices concerned in the collection, management, or receipt of the revenues which are subject to the said commissioners, or any of the officers concerned in the collection, management, or receipt of the revenues subject to the authority of the postmaster-general, shall be required to make or subscribe the said declaration, in respect of their said offices or appointments: Provided also, that nothing herein contained shall extend to require any naval or military officer, or other person as aforesaid, upon whom any office, place, commission, appointment, or
promotion shall be conferred during his absence from England, or within three months previous to his departure from thence, to make and subscribe the said declaration until after his return to England, or within six months thereafter.
VIII. And be it further enacted, That all persons now in the actual possession of any office, command, place, trust, service, or employment, or in the receipt of any pay, salary, fee, or wages, in respect of or as a qualification for which, by virtue of or under any of the before-mentioned acts or any other act or acts, they respectively ought to have heretofore taken or ought hereafter to receive the said Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, shall be and are hereby confirmed in the possession and enjoyment of their said several offices, commands, places, trusts, services, employments, pay, salaries, fees, and wages respectively, notwithstanding their omission or neglect to take or receive the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper in manner aforesaid, and shall be and are hereby indemnified, freed, and discharged from all incapacities, disabilities, forfeitures, and penalties whatsoever, already incurred or which might hereafter be incurred in consequence of any such omission or neglect; and that no election of or act done or to be done by any such person or under his authority, and not yet avoided, shall be hereafter questioned or avoided by reason of any such omission or neglect; but that every such election and act shall be as good, valid, and effectual as if such person had duly received the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper in manner aforesaid.
IX. Provided nevertheless, That no act done in the execution of any of the corporate or other offices, places, trusts, or commissions aforesaid, by any such person omitting or neglecting as aforesaid, shall by reason thereof be void or voidable as to the rights of any other person not privy such omission or neglect, or render such last-mentioned person liable to any action or indictment.
(Walpole, H.E. ii. 470 et seq.; May, C.H.E. iii. chs. xii.-xiv.)