Parliament


parliament
par·lia·ment /'pär-lə-mənt, 'pärl-yə-/ n [Anglo-French parlement conference, council, parliament, from parler to speak]
1 a: an assemblage of the nobility, clergy, and commons called together by the British sovereign as the supreme legislative body in the United Kingdom
b: a similar assemblage in another nation or state
2: the supreme legislative body of a usu. major political unit that is a continuing institution comprising a series of individual assemblages

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law. . 1996.

parliament
index chamber (body), council (assembly), legislature

Burton's Legal Thesaurus. . 2006


parliament
n.
A legislature, such as the highest legislature of the United Kingdom.
adj.
parliamentary

The Essential Law Dictionary. — Sphinx Publishing, An imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. . 2008.


Parliament
in the constitutional law of the UK, originally a body summoned to assist the monarch in discussing important matters and dispensing justice and hearing grievances. In modern times it is divided into two houses: the House of Commons, which is democratically elected, and the House of Lords, which is inhabited by hereditary and appointed peers. It sits in Westminster (formerly a royal palace) and is now under the control of the Speaker of the House of Commons. Still known as the High Court of Parliament, its functions are not simply legislative, although that is its most important role today. It is summoned by exercise of the royal prerogative, and this meeting is known as a parliament that lasts until that parliament is dissolved. While convened, it divides into sessions, now two a year, each session being terminated by prorogation (again an exercise of the prerogative). The Meeting of Parliament Act 1694 provides (following the Triennial Act 1664) that parliaments must be called at least once every three years. The convention (conventions) that requires the important Finance, Army, Air Force and Navy Acts to be re-enacted annually means that parliament sits at least once a year, although having become the modern government of a modern nation it is in almost constant session.
Its pomp and ceremony are legendary. The Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod leads the members of the House of Commons to the House of Lords on the opening of Parliament. The Queen usually attends the opening of a parliament, and, indeed, each session, to give the Queen's speech (drafted in fact by the Cabinet), setting out the legislative programme. A bill for the Suppression of Clandestine Outlawries is read at the start of every session except the first to show the world that the Commons can initiate bills not in the Queen's speech. In the Lords, the debate on the Queen's speech takes place after a formal reading of the Select Vestries Bill and in the form of a debate on a loyal address. The Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949 represent the present state of the long-running struggle between Lords and Commons, and reflects the fact that universal suffrage, which began in 1832 with the great Reform Act, has strengthened the hand of the Commons over the Lords. The thrust of the Acts read together is that the Lords can at best delay a bill by sending it back to the Commons, who then have only to bide their time to turn it into law. The 1949 Act was actually passed under the provisions of the 1911 Act, and it was this 1949 provision that effectively made the power a delaying one instead of one that might have allowed a longer period and one in which the electorate has a say in an important matter over which the two houses had disagreed. Its constitutionality is not entirely unquestioned. See also National Assembly for Wales, Scottish Parliament.

Collins dictionary of law. . 2001.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Parliament — Par lia*ment, n. [OE. parlement, F. parlement, fr. parler to speak; cf. LL. parlamentum, parliamentum. See {Parley}.] 1. A parleying; a discussion; a conference. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] But first they held their parliament. Rom. of R. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • parliament — par‧lia‧ment [ˈpɑːləmənt ǁ ˈpɑːr ] noun [countable] the group of people elected to make a country s laws and discuss important national issues: • The Dutch parliament voted to begin lifting economic sanctions. * * * parliament UK US /ˈpɑːləmənt/… …   Financial and business terms

  • parliament — ► NOUN 1) (Parliament) (in the UK) the highest legislature, consisting of the Sovereign, the House of Lords, and the House of Commons. 2) a similar body in other countries. ORIGIN Old French parlement speaking …   English terms dictionary

  • parliament — [pär′lə mənt] n. [ME parlament < OFr parlement < parler: see PARLEY] 1. an official or formal conference or council, usually concerned with government or public affairs 2. [P ] a) the national legislative body of Great Britain, composed of… …   English World dictionary

  • Parliament — Parliament, s. Parlament …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • parliament — (n.) late 13c., from O.Fr. parlement (11c.), originally speaking, talk, from parler to speak (see PARLEY (Cf. parley)); spelling altered c.1400 to conform with M.L. parliamentum. Anglo Latin parliamentum is attested from early 13c. Related:… …   Etymology dictionary

  • parliament — parliament, parliamentary Both words are spelt with an a in the middle, but are pronounced with the ia as a single syllable …   Modern English usage

  • Parliament — This article is about the legislative institution. For other uses, see Parliament (disambiguation). Parliaments redirects here. For the American style doo wop quintet, see The Parliaments. The House of Representatives Chamber of the Parliament of …   Wikipedia

  • parliament — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ current, present ▪ new ▪ outgoing ▪ bicameral, unicameral ▪ elected …   Collocations dictionary

  • parliament — /pahr leuh meuhnt/ or, sometimes, /pahrl yeuh /, n. 1. (usually cap.) the legislature of Great Britain, historically the assembly of the three estates, now composed of Lords Spiritual and Lords Temporal, forming together the House of Lords, and… …   Universalium


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