Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 1, 1547-1629. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1802.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
Lunae, 25o Junii 1604
B. For the better Discovering of Simony, reported by Sir Fr. Eure; but some Defects observed in the Bill; and, upon Mr. Speaker's Motion, some of the Committees appointed to repair unto him this Afternoon, and confer with him about it; and the Bill to be again brought in Tomorrow Morning.
Mayors sitting in Parliament.
This Day Mr. Francis Moore moved to know the Opinion of the House, whether a Mayor of a Town, &c. might lawfully be returned, and admitted to serve as a Member here; and alleged a Case in 38o H. VIII. in Brook's Abridgment, where it is reported to be admitted in the Commons House of Parliament, that if a Burgess of the Parliament be made Mayor of a Town, having thereby judicial Jurisdiction, that That is a sufficient Cause to send forth a new Writ for a new Choice. Hereupon by some it was answered, that they conceived Mayors to be within the Equity of the Statute of 23 of H. VIII.[*] inhibiting the Election of Sheriffs, &c. By some the great Inconvenience was urged, that Mayors, to whom the
Writs were directed, should be admitted Burgesses; seeing, for the more part, their Power was such, as they might procure themselves to be chosen. By others a Difference was taken : If the Mayor elect procure himself to be chosen, then with good Reason doth he stand incapable; but if he be freely and indifferently chosen, or elected Burgess of another Borough, whereof he is not Mayor, that then he may lawfully be returned, and fitly admitted to serve as a Member of this House. By a third the Point was thus moderated; that for such Members of this House, as, upon the Returns, did appear to be Mayors, new Writs might presently issue, by Warrant under the Hand of Mr. Speaker, in the Name of the said House, for a new Election, according to the usual Form; intimating withal, that, before the Execution of the said Writs, the Time of their Mayoralty would expire, and then the same Members might stand, and serve, without Exception, at the next Session of this present Parliament.
Howbeit, upon the whole Matter, it was resolved and ordered, and the Clerk of the said House commanded to enter it accordingly, That, from and after the End of this present Parliament, no Mayor of any City, Borough, or Town corporate, should be elected, returned, or allowed to serve as a Member of this House; and if it did appear that any Mayor were returned a Burgess; that presently a new Writ should be awarded for the Choice of another in the Room and Place of the said Mayor : And this to continue as an Act and Order of this House for ever.
Upon Motion, such as sat against the Bill, went forth of the House, and brought in the Bill in their Hands : Which is according to ancient Order, and was now moved, and done (once in a Parliament) for preserving Memory of the Order; and so expressed by the Mover.