Tuesday, 18 November 2014

'Henry VIII clauses'

I have been given a fascinating modern take on one of the most notorious statutes passed in Henry VIII’s reign.

In 1539 his Parliament, no doubt at Cromwell’s instigation, passed the Act of Proclamations, which appeared to give royal proclamations the force of law. 

Today the official Parliament site gives a fairly neutral definition and links the term to the Statute of Proclamations 1539.

The term 'Henry VIII Clause' is apparently always used in negative contexts, usually for when ministers attempt to obtain powers beyond those which are seen to be necessary.  For a typical view see hereSo although the Act was repealed at the King’s death in 1547, its spirit lives on - if we let it!

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