114. CHARLES II: STATUTES
(A) Act Legalizing the Convention Parliament (1660)
An act for removing and preventing all questions and disputes concerning
the assembling and sitting of this present parliament. For the preventing all
doubts and scruples concerning the assembling, sitting, and proceeding of this
present parliament, be it declared and enacted, and it is declared and enacted,
by the king our sovereign lord and by the lords and commons in parliament
assembled, and by authority of the same, that the parliament begun and holden
at Westminster the third day of November in the sixteenth year of the reign of
the late King Charles of blessed memory is fully dissolved and determined, and
that the lords and commons now sitting at Westminster in this present
parliament are the two houses of parliament and so shall be, and are hereby
declared, enacted, and adjudged to be, to all intents, constructions, and
purposes whatsoever — notwithstanding any want of the king's majesty's
writ or writs of summons, or any defect or alteration of or in any writ or
writs of summons, or any other defect or default whatsoever — as if this
parliament had been summoned by writ or writs in his majesty's name according
to the usual form, and as if his majesty had been present in person at the
assembling and commencement of this present parliament. Provided always that
this present parliament may be dissolved by his majesty after the usual manner,
as if the same had been summoned by writ or writs in his majesty's name.
Provided also, and it is hereby enacted, that his majesty's royal assent to
this bill shall not determine this present session of parliament.
Statutes of the Realm, V, 179: 12 Charles II, c.
(B) Act Abolishing Feudal Tenures (1660)
An act taking away the court of wards and liveries, and tenures in
capite and by knight's service, and purveyance, and for settling a revenue
upon his majesty in lieu thereof. Whereas it hath been found by former
experience that the courts of wards and liveries and tenures by knight's
service either of the king or others ... and the consequents upon the same have
been much more burdensome ... to the kingdom than they have been beneficial to
the king ...: be it therefore enacted ... that the court of wards and liveries,
and all wardships, liveries ... , and forfeitures of marriages by reason of any
tenure of the king's majesty or of any other by knight's service ..., and all
other gifts, grants, charges ... by reason of any tenure of the king's majesty,
or of any other, by knight's service and ... all fines for alienation ... ,
tenure by homage, and all charges ... by reason of ... tenure by knight's
service ... be ... taken away and discharged from the ... 24th day of February,
1645 ...; and all tenures of any honours, manors, lands, tenements, or
hereditaments of any estate of inheritance at the common law held either of the
king or of any other person or persons ... are hereby enacted to be turned into
free and common socage to all intents and purposes from the said day....
And be it further enacted that no pre-emption shall be allowed or
claimed in the behalf of his majesty, or of any his heirs or successors, or of
any the queens of England, or of any the children of the royal family for the
time being, in market or out of market; but that it be hereafter free to all
and every of the subjects of his majesty to sell, dispose, or employ his said
goods to any other person or persons as him listeth — any pretence of
making provision or purveyance of victual, carriages, or other
thing for his majesty, his heirs or successors ... , the said queens or
children, or any pretence of pre-emption in their ... behalfs
And now — to the intent and purpose that his majesty, his heirs,
and successors, may receive a full and ample recompense and satisfaction, as
well for the profits of the said court of wards and the tenures ... and other
the premises and perquisites incident thereunto ... , as also for all ...
purveyance and provisions herein before mentioned ... — be it therefore
enacted by the authority aforesaid that there shall be paid unto the king's
majesty, his heirs and successors, forever hereafter ... the several rates,
impositions, duties, and charge hereinafter expressed and in manner and form
Ibid., V, 259 f.: 12 Charles II, c. 24.
(C) Post Office Act (1660)
An act for erecting and establishing a post office. Whereas, for the
maintenance of mutual correspondencies and prevention of many inconveniences
happening by private posts, several public post offices have been heretofore
erected for carrying and recarrying of letters by posts to and from all parts
and places within England, Scotland, and Ireland, and several parts beyond the
seas, the well ordering whereof is a matter of general concernment and of great
advantage as well for preservation of trade and commerce as otherwise: to the
end therefore that the same may be managed so that speedy and safe dispatches
may be had ... , be it therefore enacted ... that there be from henceforth one
general letter office erected ... within the city of London, from whence all
letters and packets whatsoever may be with speed ... sent unto any part of the
kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland, or any other of his majesty's
dominions, or unto any ... country beyond the seas, at which said office all
returns and answers may be likewise received; and that one master of the said
general letter office shall be from time to time appointed by the king's
majesty ... , by the name and style of his majesty's postmaster general, which
said master ... and his deputy and deputies ... , and no other person or
persons whatsoever, shall ... have the receiving, taking up, ordering,
dispatching ... , and delivering of all letters and packets whatsoever which
shall ... be sent to and from all ... parts of ... his majesty's dominions and
to and from all ... countries beyond the seas ... , except such letters as
shall be sent by coaches, common known carriers of goods, by carts, wagons, or
And be it further enacted ... that it shall ... be lawful ... for such
postmaster general ... to demand ... and take for the portage and conveyance of
all such letters which he shall so convey, carry, or send post ... according to
the several rates and sums of lawful English money hereafter mentioned, and not
to exceed the same....
Ibid., V, 297 f.: 12 Charles II, c. 35.
(D) Navigation Act (1660)
An act for the encouraging and increasing of shipping and navigation....
Be it enacted ... that from and after the first day December, 1660 ... , no
goods or commodities whatsoever shall be imported into or exported out of any
lands, islands, plantations, or territories to his majesty belonging ... in
Asia, Africa, or America in any other ship or ships, vessel or vessels,
whatsoever but in such ships or vessels as do truly and without fraud belong
only to the people of England or Ireland, dominion of Wales or town of
Berwick-upon-Tweed ... and whereof the master and three-fourths of the mariners
at least are English, under the penalty of the forfeiture and loss of all the
goods and commodities ... , as also of the ship or vessel....
And it is further enacted ... that no goods or commodities whatsoever of
the growth, production, or manufacture of Africa, Asia, or America ... be
imported into England [etc.] ... in any other ship ... [than as aforesaid].
And it is further enacted ... that no goods or commodities that are of
foreign growth, production, or manufacture, and which are to be brought into
England [etc.] ... in English-built shipping or other shipping belonging to
some of the aforesaid places and navigated by English mariners as abovesaid,
shall be shipped or brought from any other place or places ... but only from
those of their said growth, production, or manufacture, or from those ports
where the said goods and commodities can only [be] or are or usually have been
first shipped for transportation....
Ibid., V, 246 f.: 12 Charles II, c. 18.
(E) Treasons Act (1661)
An act for safety and preservation of his majesty's person and
government against treasonable and seditious practices and attempts....
Be it enacted ... that, if any person ... whatsoever ... during the
natural life of our most gracious sovereign lord the king ... shall, within the
realm or without, compass, imagine, invent, devise, or intend death or
destruction, or any bodily harm tending to death or destruction, maim or
wounding, imprisonment or restraint of the person of the same our sovereign
lord the king; or to deprive or depose him from the style, honour, or kingly
name of the imperial crown of this realm, or of any other of his majesty's
dominions or countries; or to levy war against his majesty within this realm or
without; or to move or stir any foreigner or strangers with force to invade
this realm, or any other his majesty's dominions or countries, being under his
majesty's obeisance — and such compassings, imaginations, inventions,
devices, or intentions, or any of them, shall express, utter, or declare by any
printing, writing, preaching, or malicious and advised speaking — being
legally convicted thereof upon the oaths of two lawful and credible witnesses
upon trial, or otherwise convicted or attainted by due course of law, then
every such person and persons so as aforesaid offending shall be deemed,
declared, and adjudged to be traitors and shall suffer pains of death, and also
lose and forfeit as in cases of high treason.
And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that, if any person
... during his majesty's life shall maliciously and advisedly publish or affirm
the king to be an heretic or a papist, or that he endeavours to introduce
popery; or shall maliciously and advisedly, by writing, printing, preaching, or
other speaking, express, publish, utter, or declare any words, sentences, or
other thing or things to incite or stir up the people to hatred or dislike of
the person of his majesty or the established government; then every such person
and persons, being thereof legally convicted, shall be disabled to have ... any
place, office, or promotion ecclesiastical, civil, or military, or any other
employment in church or state, other than that of his peerage, and shall
likewise be liable to such further and other punishments as by the common laws
or statutes of this realm may be inflicted in such cases....
Be it ... further enacted by the authority aforesaid that, if any person
or persons ... shall maliciously and advisedly, by writing, printing,
preaching, or other speaking, express, publish, utter, declare, or affirm that
the parliament begun at Westminster upon the third day of November, in the year
of our Lord 1640, is not yet dissolved, or is not determined, or that It ought
to be in being, or hath yet any continuance or existence; or that there lies
any obligation upon him or any other person from any oath, covenant, or
engagement whatsoever to endeavour a change of government, either in church or
state; or that both houses of parliament or either house of parliament have or
hath a legislative power without the king, or any other words to the same
effect; that then every such person and persons so as aforesaid offending shall
incur the danger and penalty of a praemunire mentioned in a statute made
in the sixteenth year of the reign of King Richard II. And it is
hereby also declared that the oath usually called the Solemn League and
Covenant was in itself an unlawful oath, and imposed upon the
subjects of this realm against the fundamental laws and liberties of this
kingdom, and that all orders and ordinances, or pretended orders and
ordinances, of both or either houses of parliament, for imposing of oaths,
covenants, or engagements, levying of taxes, or raising of forces and arms, to
which the royal assent, either in person or by commission, was not expressly
had or given, were in the first creation and making, and still are, and so
shall be taken to be, null and void to all intents and purposes
Provided always, and be it enacted, that no person or persons shall be
indicted, arraigned, condemned, convicted, or attainted for any of the treasons
or offences aforesaid, unless the same offender or offenders be thereof accused
by the testimony and deposition of two lawful and credible witnesses upon oath;
which witnesses, at the time of the said offender or offenders' arraignment,
shall be brought in person before him or them face to face, and shall openly
avow and maintain upon oath what they have to say against him or them
concerning the treason or offences contained in the said indictment, unless the
party or parties arraigned shall willingly without violence confess the
Ibid., V, 304 f.: 13 Charles II, st. 1, c. 1.
(F) Act Restoring the Temporal Power of the Clergy
An act for repeal of an act of parliament entitled An Act for
Disenabling All Persons in Holy Orders to Exercise Any Temporal Jurisdiction or
Authority. Whereas at the parliament begun at Westminster the
third day of November in the sixteenth year of the reign of our late sovereign
lord, King Charles of blessed memory, since deceased, an act of parliament was
made, entitled [as above] ...; which act hath made several alterations
prejudicial to the constitution and ancient rights of parliament and contrary
to the laws of this land, and is by experience found otherwise inconvenient: be
it enacted ... that the said act ... and every clause, matter, and thing
therein contained shall be and is hereby from henceforth repealed, annulled,
and made void to all intents and purposes whatsoever.
Ibid., V, 306: 13 Charles II, st. I, c. 2.
(G) Act Against Tumultuous Petitioning (1661)
An act against tumults and disorders, upon pretence of preparing or
presenting public petitions or other addresses to his majesty or the
parliament.... Be it enacted ... that no person or persons whatsoever shall
from and after the first of August, 1661, solicit, labour, or procure the
getting of hands or other consent of any persons above the number of twenty or
more to any petition, complaint, remonstrance, declaration, or other addresses
to the king, or both or either houses of parliament, for alteration of matters
established by law in church or state, unless the matter thereof have been
first consented unto and ordered by three or more justices of that county, or
by the major part of the grand jury of the county ...; and that no person or
persons whatsoever shall repair to his majesty, or both or either of the houses
of parliament, upon pretence of presenting or delivering any petition ...
accompanied with excessive number of people, nor at any one time with above the
number of ten persons; upon pain of incurring a penalty not exceeding the sum
of £100 in money, and three months' imprisonment....
Ibid., V, 308: 13 Charles II, st. 1, c. 5.
(H) Militia Act (1661)
An act declaring the sole right of the militia to be in the king and for
the present ordering and disposing the same. Forasmuch as within all his
majesty's realms and dominions the sole supreme government, command, and
disposition of the militia and of all forces by sea and land and of all forts
and places of strength is and by the laws of England ever was the undoubted
right of his majesty and his royal predecessors, kings and queens of England,
and that both or either of the houses of parliament cannot nor ought to pretend
to the same, nor can nor lawfully may raise or levy any war offensive or
defensive against his majesty, his heirs, or lawful successors ...; and whereas
an act is under consideration for exercising the militia with most safety and
ease to the king and his people, which act cannot yet be perfected: be it
therefore enacted ... that the militia and land forces of this kingdom and of
the dominion of Wales ... now under the power of lieutenants or their deputies
shall be exercised ... until 25 March next ensuing in such manner as the same
now is actually exercised ... according to such commissions and instructions as
they formerly have or ... shall receive from his majesty....
Provided that neither this act nor any ... thing therein contained shall
be ... taken to extend to the giving or declaring of any power for the
transporting of any the subjects of this realm, or any way compelling them to
march out of this kingdom otherwise than by the laws of England ought to be
Ibid., V, 308 f.: 13 Charles II, st. 1, c. 6.
(I) Ecclesiastical Commission Act (1661)
An act for explanation of a clause contained in the act of parliament
made in the seventeenth year of the late King Charles.... Whereas,
in an act of parliament made in the seventeenth year of the late King Charles
... , it is amongst other things enacted that no archbishop, bishop ... , nor
any other person or persons whatsoever exercising spiritual or ecclesiastical
power, authority, or jurisdiction ... , shall ... award, impose, or inflict any
pain, penalty, fine, amercement, imprisonment, or other corporal punishment
upon any of the king's subjects for any contempt, misdemeanour, crime, offence,
matter, or thing whatsoever belonging to spiritual or ecclesiastical cognizance
or jurisdiction; whereupon some doubt hath been made, that all ordinary power
of coercion and proceedings in causes ecclesiastical were taken away, whereby
the ordinary course of justice in causes ecclesiastical hath been obstructed:
be it ... enacted by the king's most excellent majesty, by and with the advice
and consent of the lords and commons in this present parliament assembled, and
by the authority thereof, that ... archbishops, bishops, or any other person or
persons named as aforesaid ... may proceed, determine, sentence, execute, and
exercise all manner of ecclesiastical jurisdiction and all censures and
coercions appertaining and belonging to the same ... , according to the king's
majesty's ecclesiastical laws used and practised in this realm ... , as they
did and might lawfully have done before the making of the said act.
And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that the
afore-recited act ... and all the matters and clauses therein contained,
excepting what concerns the high commission court, or the new erection of some
such like court by commission, shall be and is hereby repealed to all intents
and purposes whatsoever — any thing, clause, or sentence in the said act
contained to the contrary notwithstanding....
Provided ... that it shall not be lawful for any archbishop, bishop ...
, or any other person having or exercising spiritual or ecclesiastical
jurisdiction to tender or administer unto any person whatsoever ... any ...
oath whereby such person ... may be charged or compelled to confess or accuse
or to purge him or herself of any criminal matter or thing, whereby he or she
may be liable to any censure or punishment.... Provided always that this act or
anything therein contained shall not ... be construed ... to abridge or
diminish the king's majesty's supremacy in ecclesiastical matters and
Ibid., V, 315 f.: 13 Charles II, st. 1, c. 12.
(J) Corporation Act (1661)
An act for the well governing and regulating of corporations. Whereas
questions are likely to arise concerning the validity of elections of
magistrates and other officers and members in corporations, as well in respect
of removing some as placing others during the late troubles contrary to the
true intent and meaning of their charters and liberties; and to the end that
the succession in such corporations may be most probably perpetuated in the
hands of persons well affected to his majesty and the established government
...: be it enacted ... that no charter of any corporation cities, towns
boroughs, Cinque Ports and their members, and other port towns in England or
Wales ... shall at any time hereafter be avoided for or by reason of any act or
thing done or omitted to be done before the first day of this present
And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that all persons
who, upon the four-and-twentieth day of December, 1661, shall be mayors,
aldermen, recorders, bailiffs, town clerks, common-councilmen, and other
persons then bearing any office or offices of magistracy or places or trusts or
other employment relating to or concerning the government of the said
respective cities, corporations, and boroughs ... shall ... take the oaths of
allegiance and supremacy and this oath following: "I, A. B., do declare and
believe that it is not lawful upon any pretence whatsoever to take arms against
the king, and that I do abhor that traitorous position of taking arms by his
authority against his person or against those that are commissioned by him; so
help me God." And also at the same time [he] shall publicly subscribe ... this
following declaration: "I, A. B., do declare that I hold that there lies no
obligation upon me or any other person from the oath commonly called the Solemn
League and Covenant, and that the same was in itself an unlawful oath and
imposed upon the subjects of this realm against the known laws and liberties of
the kingdom." ...
Provided also, and be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that, from
and after the expiration of the said commissions, no person or persons shall
forever hereafter be placed, elected, or chosen in or to any the offices or
places aforesaid that shall not have within one year next before such election
or choice taken the sacrament of the Lord's Supper according to the rites of
the Church of England; and that every such person and persons so placed,
elected, or chosen shall likewise take the aforesaid three oaths and subscribe
the said declaration at the same time when the oath for the due execution of
the said places and offices respectively shall be administered. And in default
hereof, every such placing, election, and choice is hereby enacted and declared
to be void....
Ibid., V, 321 f.: 13 Charles II, st. 2, c. 1.
(K) Act of Uniformity (1662)
An act for the uniformity of public prayers and administration of
sacraments and other rites and ceremonies, and for establishing the form of
making, ordaining, and consecrating bishops, priests, and deacons, in the
Church of England. Whereas in the first year of the late Queen Elizabeth there
was one uniform order of common service and prayer ... compiled by the reverend
bishops and clergy, set forth in one book, entitled The Book of Common Prayer
and Administration of Sacraments and Other Rites and Ceremonies in the Church
of England, and enjoined to be used by act of parliament, holden in the said
first year of the said late queen ...; and yet, this
notwithstanding, a great number of people in divers parts of this realm ... do
wilfully and schismatically abstain and refuse to come to their parish churches
and other public places where common prayer, administration of the sacraments,
and preaching of the word of God is used upon the Sundays and other days
ordained and appointed to be kept and observed as holy days; and whereas, by
the great and scandalous neglect of ministers in using the said order or
liturgy so set forth and enjoined as aforesaid, great mischiefs and
inconveniences during the times of the late unhappy troubles have arisen and
grown, and many people have been led into factions and schisms, to the great
decay and scandal of the reformed religion of the Church of England and to the
hazard of many souls; for prevention whereof in time to come, for settling the
peace of the Church, and for allaying the present distempers which the
indisposition of the time hath contracted, the king's majesty ... granted his
commission under the great seal of England to several bishops and other divines
to review the Book of Common Prayer and to prepare such alterations and
additions as they thought fit to offer; and afterwards the convocations of both
the provinces of Canterbury and York, being by his majesty called and
assembled, and now sitting, his majesty hath been pleased to authorize and
require ... the bishops and clergy of the same to review the said Book of
Common Prayer and the Book of the Form and Manner of the Making and
Consecrating of Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, and that after mature
consideration they should make such additions and alterations in the said books
respectively, as to them should seem meet and convenient, and should exhibit
and present the same to his majesty in writing for his further allowance or
confirmation; since which time, upon full and mature deliberation, they ...
have accordingly reviewed the said books and have made some alterations which
they think fit to be inserted to the same, and some additional prayers to the
said Book of Common Prayer to be used upon proper and emergent occasions, and
have exhibited and presented the same unto his majesty in writing, in one book
entitled The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments ... and
the Form or Manner of Making, Ordaining, and Consecrating of Bishops, Priests,
and Deacons; all of which his majesty, having duly considered, hath fully
approved ... and recommended to this present parliament....
Now, in regard that nothing conduceth more to the settling of the peace
of this nation ... , nor to the honour of our religion and the propagation
thereof, than an universal agreement in the public worship of Almighty God ...
, be it enacted ... that all and singular ministers in any cathedral,
collegiate or parish church, or chapel, or other place of public worship within
this realm of England, dominion of Wales, and town of Berwick-upon-Tweed, shall
be bound to say and use ... the public and common prayer in such order and form
as is mentioned in the said book annexed and joined to this present act.... And
... be it further enacted ... that every parson, vicar, or other minister
whatsoever, who now hath or enjoyeth any ecclesiastical benefice or promotion
within the realm of England or places aforesaid, shall, in the church, chapel,
or place of public worship belonging to his said benefice or promotion ... ,
openly and publicly before the congregation there assembled declare his
unfeigned assent and consent to the use of all things in the said book
contained and prescribed, in these words, and no other: "I, A. B., do here
declare my unfeigned assent and consent to all and everything contained and
prescribed in and by the book entitled The Book of Common Prayer ... and the
Form or Manner of Making, Ordaining, and Consecrating of Bishops, Priests, and
Deacons." And [it is enacted] that all and every such person who shall ...
neglect or refuse to do the same within the time aforesaid ... shall ipso
facto be deprived of all his spiritual promotions....
And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that every dean,
canon, and prebendary of every cathedral or collegiate church, and all masters
and other heads, fellows, chaplains, and tutors of or in any college, hall,
house of learning, or hospital, and every public professor and reader in either
of the universities, and in every college elsewhere, and every parson, vicar,
curate, lecturer, and every other person in holy orders, and every schoolmaster
keeping any public or private school, and every person instructing or teaching
any youth in any house or private family as a tutor or schoolmaster ... shall
... subscribe the declaration or acknowledgement following, scilicet:
"I, A. B., do declare that it is not lawful, upon any pretence whatsoever, to
take arms against the king, and that I do abhor that traitorous position of
taking arms by his authority against his person or against those that are
commissionated by him, and that I will conform to the liturgy of the Church of
England as it is now by law established; and I do declare that I do hold there
lies no obligation upon me or any other person, from the oath commonly called
the Solemn League and Covenant, to endeavour any change or alteration of
government either in church or state, and that the same was in itself an
unlawful oath and imposed upon the subjects of this realm against the known
laws and liberties of this kingdom." ...
And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that no person
whatsoever shall ... be capable to be admitted to any parsonage, vicarage,
benefice, or other ecclesiastical promotion or dignity whatsoever, nor shall
presume to consecrate and administer the holy sacrament of the Lord's Supper,
before such time as he shall be ordained priest according to the form and
manner in and by the said book prescribed, unless he have formerly been made
priest by episcopal ordination, upon pain to forfeit for every offence the sum
And be it further enacted ... that no person shall be ... received as a
lecturer, or permitted ... to preach as a lecturer or to preach or read any
sermon ... in any church, chapel, or other place of public worship ... unless
he be first approved and thereunto licensed by the archbishop of the province
or bishop of the diocese ... , and shall in the presence of the same archbishop
or bishop ... read the nineand-thirty articles of religion mentioned in the
statute of the thirteenth year of the late Queen Elizabeth, with declaration of
his unfeigned assent to the same; and ... the first time he preacheth ... shall
openly, publicly, and solemnly read the common prayers and service in and by
the said book appointed to be read for that time of the day, and then and there
publicly and openly declare his assent unto and approbation of the said
book.... And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that, if any
person who is by this act disabled to preach any lecture or sermon shall,
during the time that he shall continue and remain so disabled, preach any
sermon or lecture, that then for every such offence the person ... so offending
shall suffer three months' imprisonment in the common jail without bail....
Ibid., V, 364 f.: 14 Charles II, c. 4.
(L) Act to Relieve the Poor (1662)
An act for the better relief of the poor of this kingdom. Whereas the
necessity, number, and continual increase of the poor ... through the whole
kingdom of England and dominion of Wales is very great and exceeding burdensome
...; [and] whereas, by reason of some defects in the law, poor people are not
restrained from going from one parish to another ... , to settle themselves in
those parishes where there is the best stock, the largest commons, or wastes to
build cottages, and the most woods for them to burn and destroy ... , to the
great discouragement of parishes to provide stocks where it is liable to be
devoured by strangers: be it therefore enacted ... that it shall and may be
lawful, upon complaint made by the churchwardens or overseers of the poor of
any parish to any justice of peace within forty days after any such person or
persons coming so to settle as aforesaid in any tenement under the yearly value
of £10, for any two justices of the peace ... , of the division where any
person or persons that are likely to be chargeable to the parish shall come to
inhabit, by their warrant to remove and convey such person or persons to such
parish where he or they were last legally settled, either as a native,
householder, sojourner, apprentice, or servant, for the space of forty days at
the least, unless he or they give sufficient security for the discharge of the
said parish, to be allowed by the said justices.
Provided always that all such persons who think themselves aggrieved by
any such judgment of the said two justices may appeal to the justices of the
peace of the said county at their next quarter sessions, who are hereby
required to do them justice according to the merits of their cause. Provided
also that ... it shall ... be lawful for any person or persons to go into any
county, parish, or place to work in time of harvest, or at any time to work at
any other work, so that he or they carry with him or them a certificate from
the minister of the parish and one of the churchwardens and one of the
overseers for the poor for the said year, that he or they have a dwelling-house
or place in which he or they inhabit, and hath left wife and children, or some
of them there ... , and is declared an inhabitant or inhabitants there....
And whereas the laws and statutes for the apprehending of rogues and
vagabonds have not been duly executed, sometimes for want of officers, by
reason lords of manors do not keep court-leets every year for the
making of them: be it therefore enacted ... that, in case any constable,
headborough, or tithingman shall die or go out of the parish, any two justices
of the peace may make and swear a new constable, headborough, or tithingman,
until the said lord shall hold a court or until next quarter sessions, who
shall approve of the said officers so made and sworn as aforesaid, or appoint
others as they shall think fit; and if any officer shall continue above a year
in his or their office, that then in such case the justices of peace in their
quarter sessions may discharge such officers and may put another fit person in
his or their place until the lord of the said manor shall hold a court as
And be ... it enacted ... that it shall and may be lawful to and for any
justice of peace, to whom any rogue, vagabond, or sturdy beggars ... shall be
brought, to reward any person or persons that shall apprehend any rogue,
vagabond, or sturdy beggar, by granting unto such person or persons an order or
warrant under his hand and seal to the constable, headborough, or tithingman of
such parish where such rogue, vagabond, or sturdy beggar passed through
unapprehended, requiring him to pay such person or persons the sum of
2s. for every rogue, vagabond, or sturdy beggar which shall be so
And whereas constables, headboroughs, or tithingmen are or may be at
great charge in relieving, conveying with passes, and in carrying rogues,
vagabonds, and sturdy beggars to houses of correction or ... workhouses ... ,
and as yet have no power by law to make rates to reimburse themselves, be it
therefore enacted ... that all constables, headboroughs, and tithingmen so out
of purse as aforesaid, together with the churchwardens and overseers of the
poor and other inhabitants of the said parish, shall hereby have power and
authority to make an indifferent rate and to tax all the occupiers of lands and
inhabitants, and all other persons chargeable by the statute of the
three-and-fortieth of Elizabeth concerning the office and duty of
overseers for the poor within the said parish; which rate being confirmed under
the hands and seals of any two justices of peace as aforesaid, the said
constable, headborough, or tithingmen shall have power by warrant, under the
hands and seals of two justices of peace, to levy by distress and sale of the
goods of any person or persons refusing to pay the same, rendering the overplus
to the owner if any shall be....
Provided always, and be it enacted ... , that it shall and may be lawful
for the justices of peace in any of the counties of England and Wales, in their
quarter sessions assembled ... , to transport or cause to be transported such
rogues, vagabonds, and sturdy beggars as shall be duly convicted and adjudged
to be incorrigible to any of the English plantations beyond the seas....
Ibid., V, 401 f.: 14 Charles II, c. 12.
(M) Licensing Act (1662)
An act for preventing the frequent abuses in printing seditious,
treasonable, and unlicensed books and pamphlets, and for regulating of printing
and printing-presses. Whereas the well-government and regulating of printers
and printing-presses is matter of public care and of great concernment —
especially considering that by the general licentiousness of the late times
many evil-disposed persons have been encouraged to print and sell heretical,
schismatical, blasphemous, seditious, and treasonable books, pamphlets, and
papers, and still do continue such their unlawful and exorbitant practice, to
the high dishonour of Almighty God, the endangering the peace of these
kingdoms, and raising a disaffection to his most excellent majesty and his
government — [and whereas] for prevention thereof no surer means can be
advised than by reducing and limiting the number of printing-presses, and by
ordering and settling the said art or mystery of printing by act of parliament,
in manner as hereinafter is expressed: the king's most excellent majesty by and
with the consent and advice of the lords spiritual and temporal and commons in
this present parliament assembled, doth therefore ordain and enact ... that no
person or persons whatsoever shall presume to print, or cause to be printed,
either within this realm of England or any other of his majesty's dominions or
in the parts beyond the seas, any heretical, seditious, schismatical, or
offensive books or pamphlets, wherein any doctrine of opinion shall be asserted
or maintained which is contrary to the Christian faith or the doctrine or
discipline of the Church of England, or which shall or may tend or be to the
scandal of religion, or the church, or the government or governors of the
church, state, or commonwealth, or of any corporation or particular person or
persons whatsoever; nor shall import, publish, sell, or disperse any such book
or books, or pamphlets; nor shall cause ... any such ... to be bound, stitched,
or sewed together.
And be it further ordained ... that no private person or persons
whatsoever shall at any time hereafter print or cause to be printed any book or
pamphlet whatsoever, unless the same book and pamphlet, together with all and
every the titles, epistles, prefaces, proems, preambles, introductions, tables,
dedications, and other matters and things thereunto annexed, be first entered
in the book of the register of the Company of Stationers of London, except acts
of parliament, proclamations, and such other books and papers as shall be
appointed to be printed by virtue of any warrant under the king's majesty's
sign-manual, or under the hand of one or both of his majesty's principal
secretaries of state, and unless the same book and pamphlet, and also all and
every said titles ... [etc.] thereunto annexed, or therewith to be imprinted,
shall be first lawfully licensed and authorized to be printed by such person
and persons only as shall be constituted and appointed to license the same,
according to the direction and true meaning of this present act hereinafter
expressed, and by no other: that is to say, that all books concerning the
common laws of this realm shall be printed by the special allowance of the lord
chancellor, or lord keeper of the great seal of England for the time being, the
lords chief justices, and lord chief baron for the time being ... , or one or
more of their appointments; and that all books of history concerning the state
of this realm, or other books, concerning any affairs of state, shall be
licensed by the principal secretaries of state for the time being, or one of
them ...; and that all books to be imprinted concerning heraldry, titles of
honour, and arms, or otherwise concerning the office of earl marshal, shall be
licensed by the earl marshal for the time being or by his appointment ...; and
that all other books to be imprinted or reprinted — whether of divinity,
physic, philosophy, or whatsoever other science or art — shall be first
licensed and allowed by the lord archbishop of Canterbury and lord bishop of
London for the time being or one of them, or by their or one of their
And be it enacted ... that every person and persons who ... are ...
authorized to license the imprinting of books, or reprinting thereof with any
additions or amendments, as aforesaid, shall have one written copy of the same
book or books which shall be so licensed ... with the titles [etc.] ...
thereunto annexed ...; and upon the said copy licensed to be imprinted he or
they, who shall so license the same, shall testify under his or their hand or
hands that there is not anything in the same contained that is contrary to the
Christian faith or the doctrine or discipline of the Church of England, or
against the state or government of this realm, or contrary to good life or good
manners, or otherwise as the nature and subject of the work shall require
— which licence or approbation shall be printed in the beginning of the
same book, with the name or names of him or them that shall authorize or
license the same, for a testimony of the allowance thereof....
And be it further enacted ... that no person or persons within the city
of London or the liberties thereof, or elsewhere, shall erect or cause to be
erected any press or printing-house, nor shall knowingly demise or let or
willingly suffer to be held or used any house, vault, cellar, or other room
whatsoever to or by any person or persons for a printing-house ... , unless he
or they ... shall first give notice to the master or wardens of the said
Company of Stationers for the time being, of the erecting of such
And for the better discovering of printing in corners without licence,
be it further enacted ... that one or more of the messengers of his majesty's
chamber, by warrant under his majesty's sign-manual, or under the hand of one
or both of his majesty's principal secretaries of state, or the master and
wardens of the said Company of Stationers, or any one of them, shall have power
and authority, with a constable ... , to search all houses and shops where they
shall know, or upon some probable reason suspect, any books or papers to be
printed, bound, or stitched ... , and to view there what is imprinting,
binding, or stitching, and to examine whether the same be licensed, and to
demand a sight of the said licence; and if the said book ... shall not be
licensed, then to seize upon so much thereof as shall be found imprinted,
together with the several offenders, and to bring them before one or more
justices of the peace, who are hereby ... required to commit such offenders to
prison, there to remain until they shall be tried and acquitted, or convicted
and punished for the said offences; and in case the said searchers shall ...
find any book or books ... which they shall suspect to contain matters therein
contrary to the doctrine or discipline of the Church of England, or against the
state and government, then upon such suspicion to seize upon such book or books
... and to bring the same unto the said lord archbishop of Canterbury and lord
bishop of London ... , or to the secretaries of state ... , who shall take up
such further course for the suppressing thereof as to them or any of them shall
And be it further enacted ... that every printer shall reserve three
printed copies of the best and largest paper of every book new printed, or
reprinted by him with additions, and shall, before any public vending of the
said book, bring them to the master of the Company of Stationers and deliver
them to him; one whereof shall be delivered to the keeper of his majesty's
library, and the other two to be sent to the vice-chancellors of the two
universities respectively, for the use of the public libraries of the said
Provided always that nothing in this act contained shall ... extend to
the prejudice or infringing of any the just rights and privileges of either of
the two universities of this realm touching and concerning the licensing or
printing of books in either of the said universities.
Provided always that no search shall be at any time made in the house or
houses of any the peers of this realm, or of any other person or persons not
... using any of the trades in this act before mentioned, but by special
warrant from the king's majesty under his sign-manual, or under the hand of one
or both of his majesty's principal secretaries of state, or for any other books
than such as are in printing, or shall be printed after the 10th of June,
1662 — anything in this act to the contrary thereof in any wise
notwithstanding.... Provided that this act shall continue and be in force for
two years to commence from the 10th of June, 1662, and no longer.
Ibid., V, 428 f.: 14 Charles II, c. 33.
(N) Act Regulating Commerce (1663)
An act for the encouragement of trade. Forasmuch as the encouraging of
tillage ought to be in an especial manner regarded and endeavoured; and the
surest and effectualest means of promoting and advancing any trade, occupation,
or mystery being by rendering it profitable to the users thereof; and great
quantities of land within this kingdom lying in a manner waste ... , which
might ... be improved ... and thereby much more corn produced, greater numbers
of people, horses, and cattle employed, and other land also rendered more
valuable: be it therefore enacted ... that ... , when the prices of corn and
grain ... do not exceed the rates hereafter following at the havens or places
where the same shall be shipped or loaded ... , that then it shall
be lawful for all and every person and persons to ship, load, carry, and
transport any of the said corns or grains ... unto any parts beyond the seas as
And in regard his majesty's plantations beyond the seas are inhabited
and peopled by his subjects of this his kingdom of England, for the maintaining
a greater correspondence and kindness between them and keeping them in a firmer
dependence upon it and rendering them yet more beneficial and advantageous unto
it in the further employment and increase of English shipping and seamen, vent
of English woolen and other manufactures and commodities, rendering the
navigation to and from the same more safe and cheap, and making this kingdom a
staple, not only of the commodities of those plantations, but also of the
commodities of other countries and places for the supplying of them ...: be it
enacted that ... no commodity of the growth, production, or manufacture of
Europe shall be imported into any land ... to his majesty belonging ... but
what shall be bona fide ... laden and shipped in England, Wales, and the
town of Berwick-upon-Tweed and in English-built shipping....
Ibid., V, 449 f.: 15 Charles II, c. 7.
(O) Triennial Act (1664)
An act for the assembling and holding of parliaments once in three years
at the least.... Whereas the act made in the parliament begun at Westminster
the third day of November, in the sixteenth year of the reign of our late
sovereign lord, King Charles of blessed memory ... , is in
derogation of his majesty's just rights and prerogative inherent to the
imperial crown of this realm for the calling and assembling of parliaments, and
may be an occasion of manifold mischiefs and inconveniences and much endanger
the peace and safety of his majesty and all his liege people of the realm: be
it therefore enacted ... that the said act ... and all and every the articles,
clauses, and things therein contained ... are hereby ... declared to be null
and void to all intents and purposes whatsoever....
And because, by the ancient laws and statutes of this realm made in the
reign of King Edward III, parliaments are to be held very often ...: be it
declared and enacted ... that hereafter the sitting and holding of parliaments
shall not be intermitted or discontinued above three years at the most; but
that, within three years from and after the determination of this present
parliament, and so from time to time within three years after the determination
of any other parliament or parliaments, or if there be occasion more often,
your majesty, your heirs, and successors, do issue out your writs for calling,
assembling, and holding of another parliament, to the end there may be a
frequent calling, assembling, and holding of parliaments once in three years at
Ibid., V, 513: 16 Charles II, c. 1.
(P) Conventicle Act (1664)
An act to prevent and suppress seditious conventicles. Whereas an act
made in the five-and-thirtieth year of the reign of our late sovereign lady,
Queen Elizabeth ... , hath not been put in due execution by reason
of some doubt of late made whether the said act be still in force, although ...
the said act is still in force and ought to be put in due execution; for
providing therefore of further and more speedy remedies against the growing and
dangerous practices of seditious sectaries and other disloyal persons ... , be
it enacted ... that, if any person of the age of sixteen years or upwards,
being a subject of this realm ... , shall be present at any assembly,
conventicle, or meeting under colour or pretence of any exercise of religion in
other manner than is allowed by the liturgy or practice of the Church of
England in any place within the kingdom of England, dominion of Wales, or town
of Berwick-upon-Tweed, at which conventicle, meeting, or assembly, there shall
be five persons or more assembled together over and above those of the same
household, then it shall and may be lawful ... for any two justices of the
peace, of the county ... wherein the offence aforesaid shall be committed ... ,
and they are hereby required and enjoined — upon proof ... made of such
offence, either by confession of the party or oath of witnesses or notorious
evidence of the fact ... — to make a record of every such offence and
offences ...; which record so made as aforesaid shall to all intents and
purposes be in law taken and adjudged to be a full and perfect conviction....
And thereupon the said justices ... shall commit every such offender so
convicted ... to the jail or house of correction, there to remain without bail
... for any time not exceeding the space of three months, unless such offender
shall pay down to the said justices ... such sum of money, not exceeding
£5, as the said justices ... shall fine the said offender at
And be it enacted ... that every person who shall wittingly and
willingly suffer any such conventicle, unlawful assembly, or meeting aforesaid
to be held in his or her house, outhouse, barn or room, yard or backside, woods
or grounds, shall incur the same penalties and forfeitures as any other
offender against this act....
And be it enacted ... that the justices of the peace ... shall and may,
with what aid, force, and assistance they shall think fit for the better
execution of this act, after refusal or denial, enter into any house or other
place where they shall be informed any such conventicle as aforesaid is or
shall be held....
Ibid., V, 516 f.: 16 Charles II, c. 4.
(Q) Five-mile Act (1665)
An act for restraining non-conformists from inhabiting in corporations.
Whereas divers ... persons in holy orders have not declared their unfeigned
assent and consent to the use of all things contained and prescribed in the
Book of Common Prayer ... , or have not subscribed the declaration or
acknowledgment contained in a certain act of parliament made in the fourteenth
year of his majesty's reign ... or any other subsequent act; and
whereas they, or some of them, and divers other person and persons not ordained
according to the form of the Church of England, and as have, since the Act of
Oblivion, taken upon them to preach in unlawful assemblies,
conventicles, or meetings, under colour or pretence of exercise of religion,
contrary to the laws and statutes of this kingdom, have settled themselves in
divers corporations in England, sometimes three or more of them in a place,
thereby taking an opportunity to distil the poisonous principles of schism and
rebellion into the hearts of his majesty's subjects, to the great danger of the
church and kingdom: be it therefore enacted ... that the said ... persons in
holy orders or pretended holy orders, or pretending to holy orders, and all ...
persons who have been possessed of any ecclesiastical or spiritual promotion
... , who have not declared their unfeigned assent and consent as aforesaid,
and subscribed the declaration aforesaid, and shall not take and subscribe the
oath following ... , and all such person and persons as shall take
upon them to preach in any unlawful assembly, conventicle, or meeting, under
colour or pretence of any exercise of religion, contrary to the laws and
statutes of this kingdom, shall not at any time ... , unless only in passing
upon the road, come or be within five miles of any city or town corporate or
borough that sends burgesses to the parliament, within his majesty's kingdom of
England, principality of Wales, or of the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed, or within
five miles of any parish, town, or place wherein he or they have since the Act
of Oblivion been parson, vicar, curate, stipendiary, or lecturer, or taken upon
them to preach in any unlawful assembly, conventicle, or meeting ... , upon
forfeiture of every such offence the sum of £40 of lawful English
Provided always ... that it shall not be lawful for any person or
persons restrained from coming to any city, town corporate, borough, parish,
town, or place, as aforesaid, or for any other person or persons as shall not
first take and subscribe the said oath, more definitely proscribed conventicles
held in the open; imposed a heavy fine upon preachers and teachers in
conventicles; and reduced the penalty for first attendance at such a meeting to
5s, and as shall not frequent divine service established by the laws of
this kingdom and carry him or herself reverently, decently, and orderly there,
to teach any public or private school, or to take any boarders or tablers that
are taught or instructed by him or herself, or any other, upon pain for every
such offence to forfeit the sum of £40....
Ibid., V, 575: 17 Charles II, c. 2.
(R) First Test Act (1673)
An act for preventing dangers which may happen from popish recusants.
For preventing dangers which may happen from popish recusants and quieting the
minds of his majesty's good subjects: be it enacted ... that all and every
person or persons, as well peers as commoners, that shall bear any office or
offices civil or military; or shall receive any pay, salary, fee, or wages by
reason of any grant from his majesty; or shall have command or place of trust
from or under his majesty or from any of his majesty's predecessors ... within
the realm of England, dominion of Wales, or town of Berwick-upon-Tweed, or in
his Majesty's navy, or in the several islands of Jersey and Guernsey; or shall
be of the household or in the service or employment of his majesty or of his
royal highness the duke of York, who shall inhabit, reside, or be within the
city of London or Westminster or within thirty miles distant from the same ...;
the said person and persons shall personally appear ... in his majesty's high
court of chancery or in his majesty's court of king's bench, and there in
public ... take the several oaths of supremacy and allegiance.... And the said
respective officers aforesaid shall also receive the sacrament of the Lord's
Supper according to the usage of the Church of England ... in some parish
church upon some ... Sunday immediately after divine service and
And be it further enacted ... that all ... that do ... refuse to take
the said oaths and sacrament in the said courts and places ... shall be ipso
facto adjudged incapable and disabled in law ... to have ... the said
office or offices.... And be it further enacted that all ... that shall ...
refuse to take the said oaths or the sacrament as aforesaid ... , and yet after
such neglect and refusal shall execute any of the said offices or employments
after the said times expired ... , and being thereupon lawfully convicted ... ,
shall be disabled from thenceforth to sue or use any action, bill, plaint, or
information in course of law, or to prosecute any suit in any court of equity
or to be guardian of any child or executor or administrator of any person or
capable of any legacy or deed of gift, or to bear any office within this realm
of England, dominion of Wales, or town of Berwick-upon-Tweed; and shall forfeit
the sum of £500, to be recovered by him that shall sue for the
And be it further enacted that, if any person or persons, not bred up by
his or their parent or parents from their infancy in the popish religion and
professing themselves to be popish recusants, shall breed up, instruct, or
educate his or their child or children, or suffer them to be instructed or
educated, in the popish religion, every such person, being thereof convicted,
shall be thenceforth disabled of bearing any office or place of trust or profit
in church or state....
And be it further enacted ... that at the same time when the persons
concerned in this act shall take the aforesaid oaths of supremacy and
allegiance, they shall likewise make and subscribe this declaration following,
under the same penalties and forfeitures as by this act is appointed: "I, A.B.,
do declare that I do believe that there is not any transubstantiation in the
sacrament of the Lord's Supper, or in the elements of bread and wine, at or
after the consecration thereof by any person whatsoever."
Ibid., V, 782 f.: 25 Charles II, c. 2.
(S) Act Repealing the Statute for the Burning of
An act for taking away the writ de heretico comburendo. Be it
enacted ... that the writ commonly called breve de heretico comburendo,
with all process and proceedings thereupon ... , and all punishment by death in
pursuance of any ecclesiastical censures be from henceforth utterly taken away
and abolished — any law, statute, canon, constitution, custom, or usage to
the contrary ... in any wise notwithstanding. Provided always that nothing in
this act shall extend or be construed to take away or abridge the jurisdiction
of Protestant archbishops or bishops or any other judges of any ecclesiastical
courts, in cases of atheism, blasphemy, heresy, or schism, and other damnable
doctrines and opinions, but that they may proceed to punish the same, according
to his majesty's ecclesiastical laws, by excommunication, deprivation,
degradation, and other ecclesiastical censures not extending to death....
Ibid., V, 850: 29 Charles II, c. 9.
(T) Second Test Act (1678)
An act for the more effectual preserving the king's person and
government, by disabling papists from sitting in either house of parliament.
Forasmuch as divers good laws have been made for preventing the increase and
danger of popery in this kingdom, which have not had the desired effects, by
reason of the free access which popish recusants have had to his majesty's
court, and by reason of the liberty which of late some of the recusants have
had and taken to sit and vote in parliament: wherefore, and for the safety of
his majesty's royal person and government, be it enacted ... that ... no person
that now is or hereafter shall be a peer of this realm, or member of the house
of peers, shall vote or make his proxy in the house of peers, or sit there
during any debate in the said house of peers — nor any person that now is
or hereafter shall be a member of the house of commons shall vote in the house
of commons or sit there during any debate in the said house of commons after
their speaker is chosen — until such peer or member shall from time to
time respectively, and in manner following, first take the several oaths of
allegiance and supremacy, and make, subscribe, and audibly repeat this
declaration following: "I, A.B., do solemnly and sincerely in the presence of
God profess, testify, and declare that I do believe that in the sacrament of
the Lord's Supper there is not any transubstantiation of the elements of bread
and wine into the body and blood of Christ at or after the consecration thereof
by any person whatsoever, and that the invocation or adoration of the Virgin
Mary or any other saint and the sacrifice of the mass, as they are now used in
the Church of Rome, are superstitious and idolatrous. And I do solemnly in the
presence of God profess, testify, and declare that I do make this declaration
and every part thereof in the plain and ordinary sense of the words read unto
me, as they are commonly understood by English Protestants; without any
evasion, equivocation, or mental reservation whatsoever; and without any
dispensation already granted me for this purpose by the pope or any other
authority or person whatsoever; or without any hope of any such dispensation
from any person or authority whatsoever; or without thinking that I am or can
be acquitted before God or man, or absolved of this declaration or any part
thereof, although the pope, or any other person or persons, or power
whatsoever, should dispense with or annul the same, or declare that it was null
or void from the beginning." ...
Ibid., V, 894 f.: 30 Charles II, st. 2, c. 1.
(U) Habeas Corpus Act (1679)
An act for the better securing the liberty of the subject and for
prevention of imprisonments beyond the seas. Whereas great delays have been
used by sheriffs, jailers, and other officers, to whose custody any of the
king's subjects have been committed for criminal or supposed criminal matters,
in making returns of writs of habeas corpus to them directed ... to
avoid their yielding obedience to such writs, contrary to their duty and the
known laws of the land; whereby many of the king's subjects have been ... long
detained in prison in such cases where by law they are bailable, to their great
charge and vexation: for the prevention whereof and the more speedy relief of
all persons imprisoned for any such criminal or supposed criminal matters, be
it enacted ... that, whensoever any person or persons shall bring any habeas
corpus directed unto any sheriff or sheriffs, jailer, minister, or other
person whatsoever for any person in his or their custody, and the said writ
shall be served upon the said officer or left at the jail or prison with any of
the under-officers ... of the said officers or keepers ... , the said officer
or officers, his or their under-officers ... , shall within three days after
the service thereof as aforesaid — unless the commitment aforesaid were
for treason or felony plainly and specially expressed in the warrant of
commitment — ... make return of such writ or bring or cause to be brought
the body of the party so committed or restrained unto or before the lord
chancellor, or lord keeper of the great seal of England for the time being, or
the judges or barons of the said court from whence the said writ shall issue,
or unto or before such other person ... before whom the said writ is made
returnable according to the command thereof; and shall likewise then certify
the true causes of his detainer or imprisonment....
And for the prevention of unjust vexation by reiterated commitments for
the same offence, be it enacted ... that no person or persons, which shall be
delivered or set at large upon any habeas corpus, shall at any time
hereafter be again imprisoned or committed for the same offence by any person
or persons whatsoever other than by the legal order and process of such court
wherein he or they shall be bound by recognizance to appear, or other court
having jurisdiction of the cause....
Provided always and be it further enacted that, if any person or persons
shall be committed for high treason or felony, plainly and specially expressed
in the warrant of commitment ... , [and] shall not be indicted some time in the
next term sessions ... after such commitment, it shall and may be lawful to and
for the judges of the court of king's bench and justices of oyer and terminer
or general ' jail-delivery, and they are hereby required — upon motion to
them made in open court the last day of the term sessions ... either by the
prisoner or any one in his behalf — to set at liberty the prisoner upon
bail, unless it appears to the judges and justices upon oath made that the
witnesses for the king could not be produced the same term sessions.... And if
any person or persons committed as aforesaid ... shall not be indicted and
tried the second term sessions ... after his commitment ... , he shall be
discharged from his imprisonment....
And for preventing illegal imprisonments in prisons beyond the seas, be
it further enacted ... that no subject of this realm ... shall or may be sent
prisoner into Scotland, Ireland, Jersey, Guernsey, Tangier, or into any parts
... beyond the seas which are ... within or without the dominions of his
majesty, his heirs, or successors, and that every such imprisonment is hereby
enacted and adjudged to be illegal....
Ibid., V, 935 f.: 31 Charles II, c. 2.
 Cf. no. 62J.
 Heavy penalties are imposed for infraction.
 Here is set forth a schedule of excises on ale, beer,
cider, perry, mead, spirits, coffee, tea, and chocolate; together with import
duties on ale, beer, cider, perry, and spirits.
 Here follows a schedule of postal rates for inland and
foreign mail, beginning with 2d. for a letter of one sheet to a place
not more than eighty miles distant; also elaborate provision for the
administration of the postal service.
 Cf. no. 110.
 The following articles provide that fish and fish-products
(including whale oil) not caught on English-owned vessels or produced by
English labour are to be charged double customs; that, with certain exceptions,
vessels of aliens may not carry goods from one English port to another; and
that various other imports must pay special duties.
 Cf. no. 62F.
 No. 64F.
 No. 100.
 No. 96L.
 Cf. no. 96M.
 No. 96F.
 A royal commission is to be appointed to supervise the
making of these tests and to remove from office all persons who refuse them; as
well as any others, even if they have taken the tests, should it be deemed
"expedient for the public safety." The commissioners are also empowered to
restore officeholders who have been illegally removed.
 No. 81B.
 The same provision is extended to persons who may be
appointed to such livings in the future.
 Persons failing to make such declaration by a certain time
shall forfeit their offices, or be ineligible for appointment.
 Manorial courts; cf. nos. 54H:, 65.
 See above, p. 356, n. 10.
 Cf. no. 85. This act was continued from time to time until
1695; see no. 123A.
 Distribution of books printed abroad is closely
 The act continues with regulation of the printing
 Quarter of wheat, 48s.; of barley or malt,
28s.; of buckwheat, 28s.; of oats, 13s. 4d.; of
rye, 32s.; of peas or beans, 32s.
 Paying only whatever duties are provided by the present
grant of tunnage and poundage. When prices reached the stated level, such
grains could be exported only by paying custom at an increased rate.
 Detailed provisions follow for the enforcement of the act.
Cf. no. 110.
 No. 96A.
 No. 81F.
 The penalty for a second offence is to be six months'
imprisonment or a fine not exceeding £10; for a third offence
transportation for seven years.
 Most of these provisions, originally enacted as temporary
measures, were incorporated in the Second Conventicle Act of 1670. The latter
 No. 114K.
 The general amnesty to all but specified persons granted
by statute in 1660.
 This is the oath prescribed in the Corporation Act (above,
p. 543) with the added promise not to attempt any alteration in church or
 The next article provides similar tests to be taken by
every new appointee to such office within stated times after his
 No 60B.
 The following articles establish various measures for the
enforcement of these tests, including penalties to be assessed upon violators.
But special exemption is made in favour of Portuguese servants of the queen,
not exceeding nine in all; of such other persons as should, by order of the
privy council, be given licence to reside at court for a space of no more than
ten days; and of the duke of York.
 Cf. nos. 94A, 117A.
 If the place of commitment is more than twenty miles, but
not over a hundred, from the place to which return is to be made, ten days are
allowed; for a distance above a hundred miles, twenty days. The next article
provides means whereby a prisoner may secure habeas corpus during the
vacation of a court.