Notes and Queries, Number 32, June 8, 1850 by Various


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Page 1

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NOTES.


PRESENCE OF STRANGERS IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS.


In the late debate on Mr. Grantley Berkeley's motion for a fixed duty
on corn, Sir Benjamin Hall is reported to have imagined the presence
of a stranger to witness the debate, and to have said that he was
imagining what every one knew the rules of the House rendered an
impossibility. It is strange that so intelligent a member of the
House of Commons should be ignorant of the fact that the old sessional
orders, which absolutely prohibited the presence of strangers in the
House of Commons, were abandoned in 1845, and that a standing order
now exists in their place which recognises and regulates their
presence. The insertion of this "note" may prevent many "queries" in
after times, when the sayings and doings of 1850 have become matters
of antiquarian discussion.

The following standing orders were made by the House of Commons on the
5th of February, 1845, on the motion of Mr. Christie, (see Hansard,
and Commons' Journals of that day), and superseded the old sessional
orders, which purported to exclude strangers entirely from the House
of Commons:--

"That the serjeant at arms attending this House do from time to
time take into his custody any stranger whom he may see, or who
may be reported to him to be, in any part of the House or gallery
appropriated to the members of this House; and also any stranger who,
having been admitted into any other part of the House or gallery,
shall misconduct himself, or shall not withdraw when strangers are
directed to withdraw while the House, or any committee of the whole
House, is sitting; and that no person so taken into custody be
discharged out of custody without the special order of the House.

"That no member of this House do presume to bring any stranger into
any part of the House or gallery appropriated to the members of this
House while the House, or a committee of the whole House, is sitting."

Now, therefore, strangers are only liable to be taken into custody
if in a part of the House appropriated to members, or misconducting
themselves, or refusing to withdraw when ordered by the Speaker to do
so; and Sir Benjamin Hall imagined no impossibility.

CH.

* * * * *


THE AGAPEMONE.


Like most other things, the "Agapemone" wickedness, which has recently
disgusted all decent people, does not appear to be a new thing by any
means. The religion-mongers of the nineteenth century have a precedent
nearly 300 years old for this house of evil repute.

In the reign of Elizabeth, the following proclamation was issued
against "The Sectaries of the Family of Love:"--

"Whereas, by report of sundry of the Bishops of this Realm, and others
having care of souls, the Queen's Majesty is informed, that in sundry
places of her said Realm, in their several Dioceses there are certain
persons which do secretly, in corners, make privy assemblies of
divers simple unlearned people, and after they have craftily and
hypocritically allured them to esteem them to be more holy and
perfect men than other are, they do then teach them damnable heresies,
directly contrary to divers of the principal Articles of our Belief
and Christian Faith and in some parts so absurd and fanatical, as by
feigning to themselves a monstrous new kind of speech, never found in
the Scriptures, nor in ancient Father or writer of Christ's Church, by
which they do move ignorant and simple people at the first rather to
marvel at them, than to understand them but yet to colour their sect
withal, they name themselves to be of the _Family of Love_, and then
as many as shall be allowed by them to be of that family to be elect
and saved, and all others, of what Church soever they be, to be
rejected and damned. And for that upon conventing of some of them
before the Bishops and Ordinaries, it is found that the ground of
their sect, is maintained by certain lewd, heretical, and seditious
books first made in the Dutch tongue, and lately translated into
English, and printed beyond the seas, and secretly brought over
into the Realm, the author whereof they name H.N., without yielding
to him, upon their examination, any other name, in whose name they
have certain books set forth, called _Evangelium Regni, or, A Joyful
Message of the Kingdom; Documental Sentences, The Prophecie of the
Spirit of Love; a Publishing of the Peace upon the Earth_, and such
like.

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