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of positive law to define any possible wrong without any possible redress.
13. What is meant by this maxim ?–246.
Two things : first, that whatever is exceptionable in the conduct of public affairs is not to be imputed to the king, nor is he answerable for it personally to his people ; and, secondly, that the prerogative of the crown extends not to do any injury ; it is created for the benefit of the people and cannot be exerted to their prejudice. 14. Can Parliament remonstrate ?—247.
Yes ; notwithstanding the personal perfection which the law attributes to the sovereign, the constitution in respect to both houses of Parliament, has allowed a latitude of supposing the contrary, each of which, in its turn, hath exerted the right of remonstrating and complaining to the king, even of those acts of royalty which are most properly and personally his own, such as messages signed by himself, and speeches delivered from the throne.
15. Can laches be imputed to the king ?-247.
No; the law determines that in the king can be no negligence, or laches ; and, therefore, no delay will bar his right.
16. What is meant by the attribute of perpetuity ?—249.
The law ascribes to the king, in his political capacity, an absolute immortality. The king never dies. Immediately upon the decease of the reigning price, in his natural capacity, his kingship or imperial dignity, by act of law, without any interreg- . num or interval, is vested at once in his heir ; who is, eo instanti, king to all intents and purposes. 17. Is the king sole magistrate ?-250.
He is not only the chief, but properly the sole, magistrate of the nation ; all others acting by commission from, and in due subordination to him.
18. In what is the king absolute ?—250.
In the exertion of lawful prerogative, the king is, and ought to be, absolute; that is, so far absolute, that there is no legal authority that can either delay or resist him.
19. What is the king in foreign affairs ?–252.
The delegate or representative of his people. What is done by the royal authority, with regard to foreign powers, is the act of the whole nation; what is done without the king's concurrence, is the act only of private men.
20. What are the branches of his power in foreign affairs ?- . 253-262.
I. He has the sole power of sending embassadors to foreign states, and receiving embassadors at home. II. It is also his prerogative to make treaties, leagues, and alliances, with foreign states and princes. III. He has the sole prerogative of making war and peace. IV. He grants letters of marque and reprisals. V. It is also his prerogative to grant safe-conducts or passports.
21. What are prerogatives of the king in domestic affairs ? 262-281.
I. He is a constituent part of the legislature, and, as such, has the prerogative of rejecting such provisions in Parliament as he judges improper to be passed. II. He is considered as the generalissimo, or the first in the military command, within the kingdom. III. He is considered as the fountain of justice and general conservator of the peace of the kingdom. By the fountain of justice the law does not mean the author or original, but only the distributor. IV. He is the fountain of honor, of office, and of privilege ; and this in a different sense from that wherein he is styled the fountain of justice, for here he is really the parent of them. V. The laws of England consider the king as the arbiter of commerce, that is, domestic commerce. VI. The king is also considered, by the laws, as the head and supremo governor of the nationa. church.
OF THE KING'S REVENUE.
1. What are the king's fiscal prerogatives ?—281.
Such as regard his revenue, which the constitution hath invested in the royal person, in order to support bis dignity and maintain his power. This revenue is either ordinary or extraordinary. 2. What is his ordinary revenue ?—281.
It is such as has either subsisted time out of mind in the crown, or else has been granted by Parliament, by way of purchase or exchange for such of the king's inherent hereditary revenues as were found inconvenient to the subject.
3. What has the land tax, in its modern shape, superseded ?-309.
All the former methods of rating either property, or persons in respect of their property; whether by tenths or fifteenths, subsidies on land, hydages, scutages, or talliages. 4. What are the usual annual taxes ?–309.
Those upon land and malt. 5. What are the perpetual taxes ?—314-327.
I. The customs or duties on imports and exports. II. The excise duties. III. The duty on salt. IV. The post-office duty, for the carriage of letters. V. Stamp duties. VI. Duty on houses and windows. VII. Duty on servants. VIII. Licenses on hackney-coaches and chairs. IX. Duty on offices and pensions.
6. What has been the general tendency of changes in the constitur tion as regards the royal prerogative 2–336.
Most of the laws for ascertaining, limiting, and restraining this prerogative, have been made within the compass of little more than a century past, from the Petition of Right in 3 Car. I to the present ; so that the powers of the crown are to all ap
pearance greatly curtailed and diminished since the reign of King James the First, particularly by the abolition of the Star Chamber and High Commission Courts in the reign of Charles the First, and by the disclaiming of martial law and the power of levying taxes on the subject by the same prince; by the disuse of forest laws; and by the many excellent provisions enacted under Charles the Second, especially the abolition of military tenures, purveyance, and pre-emption ; the Habeas Corpus Act, and the act to prevent the discontinuance of Parliaments for above three years; and, since the Revolution, by the strong and emphatical words in which our liberties are asserted in the Bill of Rights and Act of Settlement; by the act for triennial, since turned into septennial, elections ; by the exclusion of certain officers from the House of Commons ; by rendering the seats of judges permanent, and their salaries liberal and independent; and by restraining the king's pardon from obstructing parliamentary impeachments.
OF THE PEOPLE, WHETHER ALIENS, DENIZENS,
1. What is the first and most obvious division of such persons as fall under the denomination of the people 2-366.
Into aliens and natural-born subjects.
2. Who are natural-born subjects ?—366.
Such as are born within the dominions of the crown of England ; that is within the ligeance, or, as it is generally called, the allegiance of the king. 3. Who are aliens ?—366.
Such as are born out of that allegiance. 4. What is allegiance ?—366.
It is the tie, or ligamen, which binds the subject to the
king, in return for that protection which the king affords tho subject.
5. What difference was there betroeen the oath of fealty and the oath of allegiance ?—367.
The former, by the feodal laws, was required to be taken by all tenants to their landlord, and was couched in almost the same terms as the usual oath of allegiance ; except that in the usual oath of fealty, there was frequently a saving or exception of the faith due to a superior lord by name, under whom the landlord himself was, perhaps, only a tenant or vassal. But when the acknowledgment was made to the actual superior himself, who was vassal to no man, it was no longer called the oatb of fealty, but the oath of allegiance; and therein the tenant swore to bear faith to his sovereign lord, in opposition to all men without any saving or exception; contra omnes homines fidelitatem fecit.
6. What was the term of allegiance at length brought to signify? -367.
It becoming, in England, a settled principle of tenure, that all lands in the kingdom are holden of the king as their sovereign and lord paramount, no oath but that of fealty could ever be taken to inferior lords, and the oath of allegiance was necessarily confined to the person of the king alone. By an easy analogy, the term of allegiance was soon brought to signify all other engagements which are due from subjects to their prince, as well as those duties which were simply and merely territorial.
7. Is there an implied allegiance ?—368.
Yes ; the law holds that there is an implied, original, and virtual allegiance, owing from every subject to his sovereign, antecedently to any express promise ; and although the subject never swore any faith or allegiance in form. The sanction of an oath does not increase the civil obligation to loyalty ; it only strengthens the social tie by uniting it with that of religion.
8. What sorts of allegiance are there ?-369.
There are two sorts or species of allegiance, the one natural,