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action of debt, bill, plaint or information wherein no essoine, protection, wager of law, aid, prayer, privilege, injunction or order of restraint, shall be in any wise prayed, granted or allowed, nor any more than one imparlance.
And be it also provided and enacted, that if any person shall hereafter be committed, restrained of his liberty or suffer imprisonment [by the order or decree of any such Court of Star Chamber or other Court aforesaid, now or at any time hereafter having or pretending to have the same or like jurisdiction, power or authority to commit or imprison as aforesaid, or by the command or warrant of the King's Majesty, his heirs or successors, in their own person or by the command or warrant of the Council Board or of any of the Lords or others of His Majesty's Privy Council'], that in
every such case every person so committed, restrained of his liberty, or suffering imprisonment, upon demand or motion made by his counsel or other employed by him for that purpose unto the Judges of the Court of King's Bench or Common Pleas in open Court, shall, without delay upon any pretence whatsoever, for the ordinary fees usually paid for the same, have forthwith granted unto him a Writ of Habeas Corpus to be directed generally unto all and every sheriff's gaoler, minister, officer or other person in whose custody the party committed or restrained shall be, and the sheriff's gaoler, minister, officer or other person in whose custody the party so committed or restrained shall be, shall at the return of writ and according to the command thereof, upon due and convenient notice thereof given unto him [at the charge of the party who requireth or procureth such writ, and upon security by his own bond given to pay the charge of carrying back the prisoner if he shall be remanded by the Court to which he shall be brought, as in like cases hath been used such charges of bringing up and carrying back the prisoner to be always ordered by the Court if any difference shall arise, thereabout'], bring or cause to be brought the body of the said party so committed or restrained unto and before the Judges or Justices of the said Court from whence the same writ shall issue open Court, and shall then likewise certify the true cause of such his detenior or imprisonment, and thereupon the Court, within three court days after such return made and delivered in open Court, shall proceed to examine and determine whether the cause of such com
* Annexed to the original Act in a separate schedule.
mitment appearing upon the said return be just and legal or not, and shall thereupon do what to justice shall appertain, either by delivering, bailing or remanding the prisoner. And if anything shall be otherwise wilfully done or omitted to be done by any Judge, Justice, officer or other person aforementioned, contrary to the direction and true meaning hereof, that then such person so offending shall forfeit to the party grieved his treble damages, to be recovered by such means and in such manner as is formerly in this Act limited and appointed for the like penalty to be sued for and recovered.
VII. Provided always and be it enacted, that this Act and the several clauses therein contained shall be taken and expounded to extend only to the Court of Star Chamber, and to the said Courts holden before the President and Council in the Marches of Wales, and before the President and Council in the northern parts, and also to the Court commonly called the Court of the Duchy of Lancaster, holden before the Chancellor and Council of that Court, and also in the Court of Exchequer of the County Palatine of Chester, held before the Chamberlain and Council of that Court, and to all Courts of like jurisdiction to be hereafter erected, ordained, constituted or appointed as aforesaid, and to the warrants and directions of the Council Board, and to the commitments, restraints, and imprisonments of any person or persons made, commanded or awarded by the King's Majesty, his heirs or successors, in their own person or by the Lords and others of the Privy Council and every one of them.
VIII. And lastly, provided and be it enacted, that no person or persons shall be sued, impleaded, molested or troubled for any offence against this present Act, unless the party supposed to have so offended shall be sued or impleaded for the same within two years at the most after such time wherein the said offence shall be committed.
26. THE ACT FOR THE ABOLITION OF THE COURT OF HIGH
COMMISSION. [July 5, 1641. 17 Car. I. cap. II. Statutes of the Realm, v. See
Hist. of Engl. ix. 404.] An Act for the repeal of a branch of a Statute primo Elizabethae,
concerning Commissioners for causes ecclesiastical. I. Whereas in the Parliament holden in the first year of the reign of the late Queen Elizabeth, late Queen of England, there was an Act made and established, entitled
An Act restoring to the Crown the ancient jurisdiction over the State ecclesiastical and spiritual,' and abolishing all foreign power repugnant to the same : in which Act, amongst other things, there is contained one clause, branch, article or sentence whereby it was enacted to this effect: namely, that the said late Queen's Highness, her heirs and successors, Kings or Queens of this realm, should have full power and authority by virtue of that Act, by Letters Patents under the Great Seal of England, to assign, name and authorise when and as often as Her Highness, her heirs or successors, should think meet and convenient, and for such and so long time as should please Her Highness, her heirs or successors, such person or persons being natural born subjects to Her Highness, her heirs or successors, as Her Majesty, her heirs or successors, should think meet to exercise, use, occupy and execute under Her Highness, her heirs and successors, all manner of jurisdictions, privileges and preeminences in any wise touching or concerning any spiritual or ecclesiastical jurisdiction within these her realms of England and Ireland, or any other Her Highness's dominions and countries ; and to visit, reform, redress, order, correct and amend all such errors, heresies, schisms, abuses, offences, eontempts and enormities whatsoever, which by any manner spiritual or ecclesiastical power, authority or jurisdiction can or may lawfully be reformed, ordered, redressed, corrected, restrained or amended, to the pleasure of Almighty God, the increase of virtue and the conservation of the peace and unity of this realm. And that such person or persons so to be named, assigned, authorised and appointed by Her Highness, her heirs or successors, after the said Letters Patents to him or them made and delivered as aforesaid, should have full power and authority by virtue of that Act and of the said Letters Patents under Her Highness, her heirs or successors, to exercise, use and execute all the premises, according to the tenor and effect of the said Letters Patents, any matter or cause to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding; and whereas by colour of some words in the foresaid branch of the said Act, whereby Commissioners are authorised to execute their commission according to the tenor and effect of the King's Letters Patents, and by Letters Patents grounded thereupon, the said Commissioners have, to the great and insufferable wrong and oppression of the King's subjects, used to fine and
imprison them, and to exercise other authority not belonging to ecclesiastical jurisdiction restored by that Act, and divers other great mischiefs and inconveniences have also ensued to the King's subjects by occasion of the said branch and commissions issued thereupon, and the executions thereof : therefore for the repressing and preventing of the foresaid abuses, mischiefs and inconveniences in time to come, be it enacted by the King's Most Excellent Majesty and the Lords and Commons in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, that the foresaid branch, clause, article or sentence contained in the said Act, and every word, matter and thing contained in that branch, clause, article or sentence shall from henceforth be repealed, annulled, revoked, annihilated and utterly made void for ever; anything in the said Act to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding.
II. And be it also enacted by the authority aforesaid, that no Archbishop, Bishop, nor Vicar General, nor any Chancellor, Official, nor Commissary of any Archbishop, Bishop or Vicar General, nor any Ordinary whatsoever, nor any other spiritual or ecclesiastical Judge, Officer or Minister of Justice, nor any other person or persons whatsoever exercising spiritual or ecclesiastical power, authority or jurisdiction by any grant, licence or commission of the King's Majesty, his heirs or successors, or by any power or authority derived from the King, his heirs or successors, or otherwise, shall from and after the first day of August, which shall be in the year of our Lord God one thousand six hundred forty and one, 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, or shall ex officio, or at the instance or promotion of any other person whatsoever, urge, enforce, tender, give or minister unto any churchwarden, sidesman or other person whatsoever any corporal oath, whereby he or she shall or may be charged or obliged to make any presentment of any crime or offence, or to confess or to accuse him or herself of any crime, offence, delinquency or misdemeanour, or any neglect or thing whereby, or by reason whereof, he or she shall or may be liable or exposed to any censure, pain, penalty or punishment whatsoever, upon pain and penalty that every person who shall offend contrary to this statute shall forfeit and pay treble damages to every person thereby grieved, and the sum of £100 to him or them who shall demand and sue for the same ; which said treble damages and sum of £100 shall and may be demanded and recovered by action of debt, bill or plaint in any Court of Record wherein no privilege, essoine, protection or wager of law shall be admitted or allowed to the defendant.
III. And be it further enacted, that every person who shall be once convicted of any act or offence prohibited by this statute, shall for such act or offence be from and after such conviction utterly disabled to be or continue in any office or employment in any Court of Justice whatsoever, or to exercise or execute any power, authority or jurisdiction by force of any Commission or Letters Patents of the King, his heirs or successors.
IV. And be it further enacted, that from and after the said first day of August, no new Court shall be erected, ordained or appointed within this realm of England or dominion of Wales, which shall or may have the like power, jurisdiction or authority as the said High Commission Court now hath or pretendeth to have ; but that all and every such Letters Patents, Commissions and Grants made or to be made by His Majesty, his heirs or successors, and all powers and authorities granted or pretended or mentioned to be granted thereby, and all acts, sentences and decrees, to be made by virtue or colour thereof shall be utterly void and of none effect.
27. ACT DECLARING THE ILLEGALITY OF SHIP-MONEY, [August 7, 1641. 17 Car. I. cap. 14. Statutes of the Realm, v. 116.
See Hist. of Engl. ix. 415.] An Act for the declaring unlawful and void the late proceedings
touching Ship-money, and for the vacating of all records
and process concerning the same. I. Whereas divers writs of late time issued under the Great Seal of England, commonly called Ship-writs, for the charging of the Ports, Towns, Cities, Boroughs, and Coun. ties of this realm respectively, to provide and furnish certain ships for His Majesty's service; and whereas upon the execution of the same writs and returns of certioraries thereupon made, and the sending the same by Mittimus into the Court of Exchequer, process hath been thence made against sundry persons pretended to be charged by way of con