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Commons   Listen
noun
Commons  n. pl.  
1.
The mass of the people, as distinguished from the titled classes or nobility; the commonalty; the common people. (Eng.) "'T is like the commons, rude unpolished hinds, Could send such message to their sovereign." "The word commons in its present ordinary signification comprises all the people who are under the rank of peers."
2.
The House of Commons, or lower house of the British Parliament, consisting of representatives elected by the qualified voters of counties, boroughs, and universities. "It is agreed that the Commons were no part of the great council till some ages after the Conquest."
3.
Provisions; food; fare, as that provided at a common table in colleges and universities. "Their commons, though but coarse, were nothing scant."
4.
A club or association for boarding at a common table, as in a college, the members sharing the expenses equally; as, to board in commons.
5.
A common; public pasture ground. "To shake his ears, and graze in commons."
Doctors' Commons, a place near St. Paul's Churchyard in London where the doctors of civil law used to common together, and where were the ecclesiastical and admiralty courts and offices having jurisdiction of marriage licenses, divorces, registration of wills, etc.
To be on short commons, to have a small allowance of food. (Colloq.)






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Commons" Quotes from Famous Books



... of pine and heather, and the haunt of gangs of smugglers. So great had the practice of smuggling grown in the eighteenth century, that, in 1720, the inhabitants of Poole presented to the House of Commons a petition, calling attention to "the great decay of their home manufacturers by reason of the great quantities of goods run, and prayed the House to provide a remedy". In 1747 there flourished at Poole a notorious band of smugglers ...
— Bournemouth, Poole & Christchurch • Sidney Heath

... "you must be on pretty short commons—you must ha' bin out a fortnight and more. Me an' my mate'll provide ...
— The Tale of Timber Town • Alfred Grace

... done any more this year. Up and to church, home to dinner. After dinner in comes Mr. Moore, and sat and talked with us a good while; among other things telling me, that [neither] my Lord nor he are under apprehensions of the late discourse in the House of Commons, concerning resumption of Crowne lands, which I am very glad of. He being gone, up to my chamber, where my wife and Ashwell and I all the afternoon talking and laughing, and by and by I a while to my office, reading over some papers which I found in my man William's ...
— Diary of Samuel Pepys, Complete • Samuel Pepys

... parliament, the detail of government, the nature and regulation of the finances, the different branches of commerce, the politics that prevail, and the connexions that subsist among the different powers of Europe; for on all these subjects the deliberations of a House of Commons occasionally turn. ...
— The Adventures of Sir Launcelot Greaves • Tobias Smollett

... drenched the Bank-holiday-makers had its counterpart inside the House of Commons in the shower of Questions arising out of Mr. CHURCHILL'S article on the Polish crisis in an evening newspaper. Members of various parties sought to know whether, when the WAR SECRETARY said that peace with Soviet Russia was only another form of war and apparently invited the ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 159, August 11, 1920 • Various

... maintained the honour of my country while acting as a naval officer should have done, I wrote to him, 'You may scratch and be d——d.' This letter was, I think, very unfairly quoted against me some time afterwards in the House of Commons. However, my name was erased from the list of naval officers, and was not replaced there for several years. I was well and kindly received by His Majesty the Sultan, promoted to the rank of full admiral, and settled down to my work as ...
— Sketches From My Life - By The Late Admiral Hobart Pasha • Hobart Pasha

... exclusively by the producers, to-wit: the workmen in the towns and the farmers and mechanics in the country; and those they elect must belong to their own class. As these constitute the great bulk of the people, the body that represents them stands for the House of Commons in England, or the House of Representatives in America. The second branch is elected exclusively by and from the merchants and manufacturers, and all who are engaged in trade, or as employers of labor. ...
— Caesar's Column • Ignatius Donnelly

... every Prime Minister, had shaped the policy of the British Empire, had enjoyed not only a representation in Parliament, but in the basis of representation had been favored with a special discrimination in their favor against Kent and Yorkshire,—if both in the House of Lords and the House of Commons they had not only been dominant, but had treated the Bentincks, Cavendishes, and Russells, the Montagus, Walpoles, and Pitts, with overbearing insolence,—and if, after wielding power so long and so arrogantly, ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 89, March, 1865 • Various

... USHER OF, an official of the House of Lords, whose badge of office is a black rod surmounted by a gold lion; summons the Commons to the House, guards the privileges of ...
— The Nuttall Encyclopaedia - Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge • Edited by Rev. James Wood

... communicating with our allies, for the purpose of forming such a concert as might effectually provide for the general and permanent security of Europe. The address in the house of lords passed without a division, but in the commons Mr. Whitbread moved an amendment expressly recommending the preservation of peace. He was under the impression that the address covertly pledged the house to war, but others of his party thought not, and his amendment ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... committee was appointed by the House of Commons to go into the whole question of Loans and Methods. The committee was presided over by Mr. E.S. Montagu, and its findings were of great interest. It advised the immediate setting up of a committee whose task it would be ...
— Women and War Work • Helen Fraser

... "phen-dubs" means? I can. Can you say all off by heart The "onery twoery ickery ann," Or tell "alleys" and "commons" apart? Can you fling a top, I would like to know, Till it hums like a bumble-bee? Can you make a kite yourself that will go 'Most as high as the eye can see, Till it sails and soars like a hawk on the wing, And the little birds come and ...
— Our Boys - Entertaining Stories by Popular Authors • Various

... marquess of Hartington, Mr Goschen and Mr Chamberlain. He was now the recognized Conservative champion in the Lower Chamber, and when the second Salisbury administration was formed after the general election of 1886 he became chancellor of the exchequer and leader of the House of Commons. His management of the House was on the whole successful, and was marked by tact, discretion and temper. But he had never really reconciled himself with some of his colleagues, and there was a good deal of friction in his relations with them, which ended with his sudden resignation on the 20th ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 3 - "Chitral" to "Cincinnati" • Various

... clear-eyed girl did not hesitate a moment to urge Henry Blaine to give up all and go to the front. It was like tearing her own heart in two, and, possibly at a word, Blaine would have remained in Boston and helped in some other way. But she fought it out with him one night on Boston Commons, and she wished then that she was a man and could go herself. On that clear, mild night, the blue luminous tinge of whose moon she remembered so vividly, they walked up and down, they passionately embraced, they felt the end of life and the mystery of death, and then at last when the young man said: ...
— The Nine-Tenths • James Oppenheim

... what distinguishes American governments as much as any thing else from any governments of ancient or of modern times, is the marvellous felicity of their representative system. It has with us, allow me to say, a somewhat different origin from the representation of the commons in England, though that has been worked up to some resemblance of our own. The representative system in England had its origin, not in any supposed rights of the people themselves, but in the necessities and commands of the crown. At first, ...
— The Great Speeches and Orations of Daniel Webster • Daniel Webster

... their scorn of the leaders of the White Guelfs. They were upstarts, purse-proud, vain, and coarse-minded; and they dared to aspire to an ambition which they were too dull and too cowardly to pursue, when the game was in their hands. They wished to rule; but when they might, they were afraid. The commons were on their side, the moderate men, the party of law, the lovers of republican government, and for the most part the magistrates; but they shrank from their fortune, "more from cowardice than from goodness, because they exceedingly feared their adversaries." Boniface VIII ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 07 • Various

... this poverty had been the best possible thing for him, its enforced abstinences having come just at the time when he had begun to "wallow"—his word for any sort of excess; and "wallowing" was undoubtedly a peril to which Norbert's temper particularly exposed him. Short commons made him, as they have made many another youth, sober and chaste, at all events in practice; and when he began to lift up his head, a little; when, at the age of three-and-twenty, he earned what seemed to him at first the luxurious income of a pound or so a week; when, ...
— Will Warburton • George Gissing

... Bellingham, who shot Mr. Percival in the House of Commons, on the 11th of May, also lived in Duke-street, about the sixth house above Slater-street. His wife was a dressmaker and milliner. She was a very nice person, and after Bellingham's execution the ladies of Liverpool raised a subscription ...
— Recollections of Old Liverpool • A Nonagenarian

... Representatives, it is in very good taste: but the room where the Representatives meet is really most beautiful. The seats are ranged in semi-circles, with desks before each, in much the same manner as in Paris; which gives a more dignified appearance than the arrangement of the seats in our House of Commons. The floors throughout a great part of the building are in very good tesselated work, made by Minton, in England; as the tiles made in this country do not preserve their colour like the English ones. The ceilings ...
— First Impressions of the New World - On Two Travellers from the Old in the Autumn of 1858 • Isabella Strange Trotter

... absence with his forces on the Rhine. But so firmly had the Great Elector established himself at home, so was he loved, that the very peasantry rose to his assistance. "We are only peasants," said their banners, "but we can die for our lord." Pitiful cry! Pitiful proof of how unused the commons were to even a little kindness, how eagerly responsive! Frederick William came riding like a whirlwind from the Rhine, his army straggling along behind in a vain effort to keep up. He hurled himself with his foremost troops upon the Swedes, and won the celebrated battle of ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 12 • Editor-In-Chief Rossiter Johnson

... knew her. The arrival for the meeting by the last train; the early start back next morning; the endeavour to see her friend's daughter, who she remembers is in Dollar; the light-heartedness over "disasters in the House" (evidently the setback to some Suffrage Bill in the House of Commons)—these are all like Elsie Inglis. So, too, are her praise of the Federation secretaries, her eager looking forward to the procession, and the ...
— Elsie Inglis - The Woman with the Torch • Eva Shaw McLaren

... appointment of Mr. ARTHUR BALFOUR, much speculation was indulged in as to the succession to the Leadership of the House of Commons. In Conservative circles there was an almost universal desire to see the place filled by a noble Baron well-known for the assiduity with which he arrives in town to transact business in Bouverie Street, returning to his country ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 101, November 7, 1891 • Various

... hare and pheasant on the estate! How the farmers swore and the labourers chuckled when he took all the cottages into his own hands and rebuilt them, set up a first-rate industrial school, gave every man a pig and a garden, and broke up all the commons 'to thin the labour-market.' Oh, how the labourers swore and the farmers chuckled, when he put up steam-engines on all his farms, refused to give away a farthing in alms, and enforced the new Poor-law to the very letter. ...
— Yeast: A Problem • Charles Kingsley

... than attempting to reach Fort Ross without stopping. We lighted a fire, and put some snow into the pot to melt. We had abundance of food for the journey, so that the delay on that account was not of much consequence, though we might have to go on short commons at the end ...
— Snow Shoes and Canoes - The Early Days of a Fur-Trader in the Hudson Bay Territory • William H. G. Kingston

... Chamberlain tells us, there was presently a touch of craziness in him—of the variety, no doubt, known to modern psychologists as megalomania He lost the sense of proportion, and was without respect for anybody or anything. The Commons of England and the immensely dignified Court of Spain—during that disgraceful, pseudo-romantic adventure at Madrid—were alike the butts of this parvenu's unmeasured arrogance But the crowning insolence ...
— The Historical Nights Entertainment, Second Series • Rafael Sabatini

... American colonial history. Impulsive, brave, dogmatic, unrelenting, his every action is full of interest. He early displayed a passionate devotion to the house of Stuart, which remained unshaken amid the overthrow of the monarchy and the triumph of its enemies. When the British Commons had brought the unhappy King to the block, Berkeley denounced them as lawless tyrants and pledged his allegiance to Charles II. And when the Commonwealth sent ships and men to subdue the stubborn Governor, they found him ready, with his raw colonial militia, to fight ...
— Virginia under the Stuarts 1607-1688 • Thomas J. Wertenbaker

... a standing army, garrisons would doubtless have been received but for the accompanying proposition to tax. On March 10, 1764, preliminary resolutions passed the House of Commons looking towards the Stamp Act. There was no suggestion that the proposition was illegal; the chief objection was summed up by Beckford, of London, in a phrase: "As we are stout, I hope we ...
— Formation of the Union • Albert Bushnell Hart

... the employers were also the magistrates, and would not enforce laws against themselves, the great Reform Bill agitation, which so nearly caused a revolution in this country, came to an end, having in 1832 achieved a partial success. But the new House of Commons did not at once realize how partial it was, and at first it regarded the interests of working men with something of the intensity of the Liberal Government of 1906, which had not yet come to appreciate the new and portentous ...
— G. K. Chesterton, A Critical Study • Julius West

... position of great importance at all times, but particularly so under the circumstances under which Mannix held it. His chief, Lord Tolerton, Secretary of State for War, was incapacitated by the possession of a marquisate from sitting in the House of Commons. It was the duty, the very onerous duty, of Mr. Edward Mannix to explain to the representatives of the people who did not agree with him in politics that the army, under Lord Torrington's administration, was adequately armed and intelligently drilled. The strain overwhelmed ...
— Priscilla's Spies 1912 • George A. Birmingham

... state, and broils, with the character of civil war in miniature, were of frequent occurrence. The submergence of the aristocratic element, the nobles, destroyed a natural balance of power between the bishop-prince and the people. The commons exerted power beyond their intelligence. Annual elections, party contests headed by rival demagogues kept the capital, and, to a lesser extent, the smaller towns of the ...
— Charles the Bold - Last Duke Of Burgundy, 1433-1477 • Ruth Putnam

... look for your sin in the way they look for Guy Fawkes at the House of Commons before the session. Take a dark lantern, and go down into the cellars. And If you do not find something there that will take all the conceit out of you, it must be because you are very ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... shall find the scene fair, Then here let me cease my complaint; Still shall Health be inhal'd with the Air, Which at Honington cannot be taint: And tho' Age may still talk of the Green, Of the Heath, and free Commons of yore, Youth shall joy in the new-fangled scene, And boast ...
— An Essay on War, in Blank Verse; Honington Green, a Ballad; The - Culprit, an Elegy; and Other Poems, on Various Subjects • Nathaniel Bloomfield

... spectacle, and were quite as entertaining as the performances of the highly rated Harrys, Irving and Lauder. There was a moral in the orgies—though we did not draw it. The natives were happy; short commons did not trouble them or mar their enjoyment in the slightest. With us it was far otherwise; we had anticipated a different Yuletide; the natives had not. The natives made the most of theirs; we the least of ours. Some of us had dreamt ...
— The Siege of Kimberley • T. Phelan

... are known to us far better than those preceding or following them, owing to the fact that three great chroniclers, Froissart, Monstrelet, and Holinshed, have recounted the events with a fulness of detail that leaves nothing to be desired. The uprising of the Commons, as they called themselves—that is to say, chiefly the folk who were still kept in a state of serfdom in the reign of Richard II.—was in itself justifiable. Although serfdom in England was never carried to the extent that ...
— A March on London • G. A. Henty

... in a very striking manner, but that is all; the Government are still in their places, not a jot stronger than they were, and the Opposition maintain their undiminished phalanx without being at all nearer coming into power. The House of Commons uniformly supports the Government, the House of Lords frequently opposes it, but the difference between the two Houses seldom swells to a dispute; it is languidly carried on and carelessly regarded, the country at large not seeming to ...
— The Greville Memoirs (Second Part) - A Journal of the Reign of Queen Victoria from 1837 to 1852 - (Volume 1 of 3) • Charles C. F. Greville

... also a pious ambition for religious ascendancy, and do what they can to foment a holy zeal against Nonconformists. But a Whig ministry is just now in power, and the Whigs are hostile to Episcopacy. They have prohibited the lower clergy from meeting in convocation, a sort of clerical house of commons; and the clergy are limited to the obscurity of their parishes, and to the melancholy task of praying God for a government that they would be only too happy to disturb. The bishops, however, sit in the House of Lords in spite of the Whigs, ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Volume 19 - Travel and Adventure • Various

... "Peter-boat" men mentioned in a previous chapter, has other claims to notice than that of being the only survivor of an ancient outdoor industry. He has given evidence before more than one committee of the House of Commons on the state of the river and the condition of its waters, and is the oldest salesman in that curious survival of antiquity, the free eel market held at Blackfriars Stairs on Sunday mornings; and, in addition, he has added to his original industry another branch of "fishing" of ...
— The Naturalist on the Thames • C. J. Cornish

... told you have short commons here, Moliere, and that the officers of my chamber think you unworthy of sharing their meals. You are probably hungry; I got up with a good appetite. Sit down at that table where they have placed my refreshments." The king sat down with ...
— Paris: With Pen and Pencil - Its People and Literature, Its Life and Business • David W. Bartlett

... and I feel like a boy. I was looking at that 'Peerage' there, the other day—and do you know, I'm sixteen years younger than the first Lord Plowden was when they made him a peer? Why he didn't even get into the House of Commons ...
— The Market-Place • Harold Frederic

... first knowledge of Manning, his small stock of friends was enlarged by the acquisition of Mr. John Rickman, one of the clerks of the House of Commons. "He is a most pleasant hand" (writes Lamb), "a fine rattling fellow, who has gone through life laughing at solemn apes; himself hugely literate, from matter of fact, to Xenophon and Plato: he can talk Greek with Porson, and nonsense with me." "He understands you" (he ...
— Charles Lamb • Barry Cornwall

... its ample back, convey the assurance that your satisfaction will not cease at its death. In parts of Buckinghamshire, this member of the duck family is bred on an extensive scale; not on plains and commons, however, as might be naturally imagined, but in the abodes of the cottagers. Round the walls of the living-rooms, and of the bedroom even, are fixed rows of wooden boxes, lined with hay; and it is the business of the wife and children to nurse and comfort ...
— The Book of Household Management • Mrs. Isabella Beeton

... to impotence, and the illusion had been fostered by the loyalty which meant at least a fair unequivocal desire to hold to the old monarchical traditions. But, in fact, parliamentary control had been silently developing; the House of Commons had been getting the power of the purse more distinctly into its hands, and had taken very good care not to trust the Crown with the power of the sword. Charles II. had been forced to depend on the help of the great French monarchy to ...
— English Literature and Society in the Eighteenth Century • Leslie Stephen

... in fashion, in fulness, and abundance of worldly glory; and I did not to his glory improve, as I should, that his good dispensation to me. But when I lived in full and fat pasture, I did there lift up the heel (Deut 32:15). Therefore he will now turn me into hard commons, that with leanness, and hunger, and meanness, and want, I may spend the rest of my days. But let him do this without murmuring and repining; let him do it in a godly manner, submitting himself to the ...
— The Works of John Bunyan • John Bunyan

... spread through the House of Commons; but at nine men in the inner lobbies were gossiping, not so much upon how far Russia, while ostensibly upholding the Shah, had pulled the strings by which the insurgents danced, as upon the manner in which the 'St. Geotge's Gazette', the Tory evening newspaper, had seized upon the incident and shaken ...
— The Masquerader • Katherine Cecil Thurston

... launch commenced in grim earnest. The women, especially, as might be expected, soon began to feel their privations acutely. Buffeted as they had been by the gale, they were completely exhausted, and needed rest and an abundance of nourishing food rather than to be placed on short commons. They bore their privations, however, with a quiet fortitude which ought to have silenced in shame the querulous complaints and murmurings of Mr Dale; though it did not. The most distressing part of it all was to hear poor little May Staunton piteously ...
— The Pirate Island - A Story of the South Pacific • Harry Collingwood

... of several Persons well known to him (himself also having been an Eye-witness to some such Experiments) who have frequently swallow'd Spiders, even of the rankest kind, without any more harm than happens to Hens, Robin-red-breasts, and other Birds, who make Spiders their daily Commons. And having made mention of some men, that eat even Toads, he adds, that though a Toad be not a Poyson to us in the whole; yet it may invenome outwardly, according to some parts so and so stirr'd; an instance whereof he alledges in ...
— Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society - Vol 1 - 1666 • Various

... and this realm, Lord, guide it still with thy most holy hand! The Commons and the subjects, grant them grace. Their prince to serve, her to obey, and treason to deface: Long may she reign in joy and great felicity, Each Christian heart do ...
— A Select Collection of Old English Plays, Vol. VII (4th edition) • Various

... but there could be no question of the sheer legality of the deed. It is by virtue of a convention, not a law, of the constitution, that ministers resign office when they have ceased to command the confidence of the House of Commons; that a bill must be read three times before being finally voted upon in the House of Commons; that Parliament is convened annually and that it consists of two houses. The cabinet, and all that the ...
— The Governments of Europe • Frederic Austin Ogg

... his address, I introduced myself again. He took me to his new lodging, and I put the questions that filled my mind. For answer he gave me the House of Commons Blue Book, which explained the charge hanging over him. Almost daily, for weeks, I heard him on his knees proclaim his innocence of the unmentionable crime with which he was charged. After some weeks of daily association, he ...
— From the Bottom Up - The Life Story of Alexander Irvine • Alexander Irvine

... by the clan or tribe. The clannish attachment of the Afghans is rather to the community than to the chief. These three classes of representatives are divided into two assemblies, the Durbar Shahi or royal assembly, and the Kharwanin Mulkhi or commons. The mullahs take their place in one or the other according to their individual rank. The executive officials of the amir have a selected body, called the Khilwat, which acts as a cabinet council, but no ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... exemplifications were adduced, not as single casual circumstances, but as usual practices, by a patriotic senator some years since, in endeavoring to obtain a legislative enactment in mitigation of the sufferings of the brute tribes. The design vanished to nothing in the House of Commons, under the effect of argument and ridicule from a person distinguished for intellectual cultivation; whose resistance was not only against that specific measure, but avowedly against the principle itself on which any measure of the same tendency ...
— An Essay on the Evils of Popular Ignorance • John Foster

... from the 6th of King John, to the end of Edward IV., in which are writs of various kinds, but more especially on the back of the roll are entered the writs of summons to parliament, both to the lords and commons, and of the bishops and inferior clergy to convocations. There are also proclamations, and enrolments of deeds between party ...
— London in 1731 • Don Manoel Gonzales

... chapters enable us to appreciate the mental caliber of our critic, and excuse us from argument with a man incapable of interpreting popular phrases. He would prove the associated press dispatches all a myth, because it is impossible for the House of Commons to appear at the bar of the House of Lords—six hundred men to stand on four square yards of floor; for McClellan to address the Army of the Potomac, which extended along a line of thirty miles; for Grant and Sherman—two men—to capture Vicksburg ...
— Fables of Infidelity and Facts of Faith - Being an Examination of the Evidences of Infidelity • Robert Patterson

... chieftains. When the battle of Fredericksburg was fought, all the world thought that the desired recognition would come at once. James M. Mason, the commissioner to England, wrote home that a large majority of the House of Commons was willing to vote for acknowledging Southern independence, and Charles Francis Adams, the Minister of the United States, was of the same opinion. Gladstone, then one of the most popular members of the British Cabinet, ...
— Expansion and Conflict • William E. Dodd

... The girl had taken to going out in the day and staying at home at night. Simultaneously with this changed rgime her funds had evidently become low. She had begun to live less well, to watch more keenly than of old the condition in which her commons went down to the kitchen and returned from it on the advent of the next meal. By various little symptoms the landlady knew that her lodger was getting hard up. Yet no amount of badgering and argument ...
— Flames • Robert Smythe Hichens

... unutterable stupidity.' Lord Althorp is 'a thick, large, broad-whiskered, farmer-looking man.' O'Connell, 'a well-doing country shopkeeper with a bottle-green frock and brown scratch wig.... I quitted them all (the House of Commons) with the highest contempt.' Of Thomas Campbell, the poet, it is written that 'his talk is small, contemptuous, and shallow; his face has a smirk which would befit a shopman or an auctioneer.' Wordsworth, 'an old, ...
— Studies in Literature and History • Sir Alfred Comyn Lyall

... Europe, for at that time European opinion still carried some weight with the bureaucratic circles of Russia. Several days before the audience at Gatchina, [1] the English Parliament discussed the question of Jewish persecutions in Russia. In the House of Commons the Jewish members, Baron Henry de Worms and Sir H.D. Wolff, calling attention to the case of an English Jew who had been expelled from St. Petersburg, interpellated the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Sir Charles Dilke, "whether Her Majesty's Government have ...
— History of the Jews in Russia and Poland. Volume II • S.M. Dubnow

... a closed car from door to door. Wrap up like a mummy. I wish the Committee room wasn't down those abominable House of Commons corridors...." ...
— The Secret Places of the Heart • H. G. Wells

... impeachment against Lord Chief-Justice Scroggs, for his arbitrary and illegal proceedings in the court of King's bench; and when the king declared his resolution not to sign the bill for excluding the duke of York, afterwards James II., he moved in the House of Commons that a bill might be brought in for the association of all his majesty's Protestant subjects. He also openly denounced the king's counsellors, and voted for an address to remove them. He appeared ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 3 - "Destructors" to "Diameter" • Various

... the mayor, aldermen, or other officers marched forth in firm array to assert their rights, defend their property and teach the proudest and most powerful baron that the humblest freeman was not to be injured with impunity. It was thus the commons learned and proved they were not objects of contempt; nay that they were beings of the same species as ...
— A Walk through Leicester - being a Guide to Strangers • Susanna Watts

... equals. In this year also (1774) the Theatre Royal was erected (at a cost of nearly L5,700) though the latter half of its title was not assumed until August, 1807, on the occasion of the Royal assent being given to the house being "licensed." A bill had been introduced into the House of Commons for this purpose on the 26th of March, 1777, during the debate on which Burke called Birmingham "the great toyshop of Europe," but it was thrown out on the second reading. The King Street Theatre, like its predecessor in Moor Street, after a time of struggle, was turned into a place ...
— Showell's Dictionary of Birmingham - A History And Guide Arranged Alphabetically • Thomas T. Harman and Walter Showell

... came up several times in the British House of Commons as might be expected. Sir Stafford Northcote on one occasion said—"There is one point upon which all our minds are fixed—I mean the mission of General Gordon. On that point I was anxious to say little or nothing. General Gordon is now engaged in an attempt of the most gallant ...
— General Gordon - Saint and Soldier • J. Wardle

... chiefly by old ladies whose husbands—to judge by the black lace caps—have left Lombard Street for heaven. At the hotel where I stopped, which was at the top of the Commons outside the thicker town, I was the only man in the breakfast room. Two widows, each with a tiny dog on a chair beside her, sat at the next table. ...
— There's Pippins And Cheese To Come • Charles S. Brooks

... advantages incidental to the tractarian movement, such as the attention which it was the means of drawing to history and the organic connection between present and past, it had, we repeat, the merit of being an effective protest against what may be called the House of Commons' view of human life—a view excellent in its place, but most blighting and dwarfing out of it. It was, what every sincere uprising of the better spirit in men and women must always be, an effective protest against the leaden tyranny of the man of the world and the so-called practical person. The ...
— On Compromise • John Morley

... young Oxonian entered the House of Commons at the age of twenty-three, Sir Robert Peel was leading the Tory party with an authority and ability rarely surpassed in parliamentary annals. Within two years the young man was admitted into the short-lived Tory ministry of 1834, and soon proved himself an active and promising lieutenant of the ...
— William Ewart Gladstone • James Bryce

... than the rest—and as incredulous of St. Remy's saintship as a Protestant Bishop, or Positivist Philosopher—took upon him to dispute the King's and the Church's claim, in the manner, suppose, of a Liberal opposition in the House of Commons; and disputed it with such security of support by the public opinion of the fifth century, that—the king persisting in his request—the fearless soldier dashed the vase to pieces with his war-axe, exclaiming "Thou shalt have no more than thy ...
— Our Fathers Have Told Us - Part I. The Bible of Amiens • John Ruskin

... Gilpin, living within the sound of Bow-bells, does not know Epping and Hainault Forests, Hounslow, Putney, and Black Heaths, Brook Green, Turnham Green, Wandsworth, Esher, Sydenham, Hays, and various other Commons? Within a circle of twenty miles around the largest and most opulent city in the world, we thus discover a large quantity of land, which cultivation would render highly productive, but which, in its present state of waste, is of little or no value to the public. And this land, ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 351 - Volume 13, Saturday, January 10, 1829 • Various

... too clerkes and too seriauntes and no mo for that office. Also the kyng graunted the same tyme to the citezeyns of London that they schulde have a comown seal, whiche schulde ben in kepynge of too aldermen and too commons of the citee: and the forsaid seal scholde nought be denyed nor warned to poure no riche of the same citee whanne thei hadde nede, yf there cause were resonable; and that no mede schulde be take no payed of eny man in no manner wyse for ...
— A Chronicle of London from 1089 to 1483 • Anonymous

... Commons' returns in 1815, there were no fewer than 925,439 individuals in England and Wales, being about one-eleventh of the then existing population, members of Friendly Societies, formed for the express purpose of affording protection to the members during sickness and old age, and enabling them ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume XII., No. 324, July 26, 1828 • Various

... As the short commons grew shorter and shorter, both meat and drink, at Camp Famine, and the campers found it was useless to attempt thieving from the Altrurians, they had tried begging from the owners in their large tent, but they were told that the provisions were giving out ...
— Through the Eye of the Needle - A Romance • W. D. Howells

... Lansdowne, is Premier Ministre. His Grace has his dwelling in the City. The Archbishop of Cantabery is not turned Quaker, as some people stated. Quakers may not marry, nor sit in the Chamber of Peers. The minor bishops have seats in the House of Commons, where they are attacked by the bitter pleasantries of Lord Brougham. A boxer is in the house; he taught Palmerston the science of the pugilate, who conferred upon him the ...
— Burlesques • William Makepeace Thackeray

... most of them being acquainted, more or less, with so old a practitioner as his father, and all, or almost all, affording, from civility, the same fair play to the first pleading of a counsel, which the House of Commons yields to the maiden speech of one ...
— Redgauntlet • Sir Walter Scott

... remember how you promised that, before I went back to school, I should hear Darrell read aloud—how you brought the volume of Milton to him in the evening—how he said, 'No, to-morrow night; I must now go to the House of Commons'—how I marvelled to hear you answer boldly, 'To-morrow night George will have left us, and I have promised that he shall hear you read'—and how, looking at you under those dark brows with serious softness, he said: 'Right: promises once given, must be kept. But was it not rash to promise ...
— What Will He Do With It, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... of a Select Committee of the House of Commons, appointed to consider the best means of improving the condition of the "aged and deserving poor." The report read: "Cases are too often found in which poor and aged people, whose conduct and whose whole career has been blameless, ...
— The Common Sense of Socialism - A Series of Letters Addressed to Jonathan Edwards, of Pittsburg • John Spargo

... numerous Parliaments and Cabinets and large body of officials, very many of whom are entrusted with the most responsible duties, demanding no ordinary mental qualifications. [Footnote: It is a fact worthy of mention in this connection, that in the English House of Commons dissolved in 1880, 236, or more than a third out of 658, members were Oxford or Cambridge men, while about 180 were 'public school men,'—the 'public schools' being Eton and such high class institutions. In a previous English Cabinet, the majority were Honor men; Mr. Gladstone is ...
— The Intellectual Development of the Canadian People • John George Bourinot

... was merry that so great his commons grew, And they that were come to him they all were ...
— The Lay of the Cid • R. Selden Rose and Leonard Bacon

... preach against it. But how cou'd I have serv'd the Commons by deserting the King? how have I show'd my self loyal to your Interest, by fooling Fleet-wood, in the deserting of Dick; by dissolving the honest Parliament, and bringing in the odious Rump? how cou'd I have flatter'd Ireton, ...
— The Works of Aphra Behn, Vol. I (of 6) • Aphra Behn

... settled themselves in Pembrokeshire; and the majority of these had crossed in a single twelvemonth. They brought with them Irish manners, and caused no little trouble. "The king's town of Tenby," wrote a Welsh gentleman to Wolsey, "is almost clean Irish, as well the head men and rulers as the commons of the said town; and of their high and presumptuous minds [they] do disobey all manner the king's process that cometh to them out of the king's exchequer of Pembroke."—R. Gryffith to Cardinal Wolsey: Ellis, first series, ...
— History of England from the Fall of Wolsey to the Death of Elizabeth. Vol. II. • James Anthony Froude

... It was intended, by making a show of these laws, to deceive the people of England, and thus to prevent them from following up the great question of the abolition. Mr. Clappeson, one of the evidences examined by the House of Commons, was in Jamaica, when the Assembly passed their famous consolidated laws, and he told the House, that "he had often heard from people there, that it was passed because of the stir in England about the slave trade;" and he added, ...
— Thoughts On The Necessity Of Improving The Condition Of The Slaves • Thomas Clarkson

... cause, unlawful 'tis to judge: Each side had great partakers; Caesar's cause The gods abetted, Cato lik'd the other.[591] Both differ'd much. Pompey was struck in years, 130 And by long rest forgot to manage arms, And, being popular, sought by liberal gifts To gain the light unstable commons' love, And joy'd to hear his theatre's applause: He lived secure, boasting his former deeds, And thought his name sufficient to uphold him: Like to a tall oak in a fruitful field, Bearing old spoils and conquerors' monuments, Who, though his root be weak, and his own weight Keep him within the ground, ...
— The Works of Christopher Marlowe, Vol. 3 (of 3) • Christopher Marlowe

... gone to the Lords, and the Commons will henceforth miss the elegant and well-groomed figure which lent distinction to a Treasury Bench not in these days too careful of the Graces. Happily Oxford City has found another distinguished man to succeed him. Mr. J.A.R. MARRIOTT may indeed be said to have ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 152, April 11, 1917 • Various

... more with forms which are the least strange and unknown, we may start with the little elegant and harmless lizards of our heaths and commons, which will serve as types of the order to which they belong—the order Lacertilia. That order is an extremely numerous one, containing many families, differing much in form. Our English lizards are true lizards, belonging to the typical ...
— The Contemporary Review, Volume 36, September 1879 • Various

... of being a dancing master, and I should have thought just the opposite. I should have said, "This Englishman is no courtier; I never heard that courtiers have a timid bearing and a hesitating manner. A man whose appearance is timid in the presence of a dancer might not be timid in the House of Commons." Surely this M. Marcel must take his fellow-countrymen for ...
— Emile • Jean-Jacques Rousseau

... faithful to King Charles II. during his exile, and at the Restoration he received the reward of his services. He sat in the House of Commons from then until his death, twice representing Westminster. He was made Paymaster-General of the Forces and one of the Lords of the Treasury. He seems to have been an active-minded man, with considerable business ...
— Chelsea - The Fascination of London • G. E. (Geraldine Edith) Mitton

... fast—as the early Church had done, it will be remembered, with the Kalends festival—came in 1644. In that year Christmas Day happened to fall upon the last Wednesday of the month, a day appointed by the Lords and Commons for a Fast and Humiliation. In its zeal against carnal pleasures Parliament published the following "Ordinance for the better observation of the Feast ...
— Christmas in Ritual and Tradition, Christian and Pagan • Clement A. Miles

... death upon the scaffold, outside this very banqueting house at Whitehall, Charles Stuart learned all too late that a "mettlesome horse" needed sometimes to be "reined," and heard, too late as well, the stern declaration of the Commons of England that "no chief officer might presume for the future to contrive the enslaving and destruction of the nation ...
— The Children's Book of Christmas Stories • Various

... and was called to the Bar, commencing his political career in 1830, and in 1834 he went to India, as a member of the Supreme Council, returning in 1838 to England, where for a few years he pursued politics and letters, representing Edinburgh in the House of Commons, but being rejected, on appearing for re-election, he devoted himself to literature. During the last twelve years of his life his time was almost wholly occupied with his History of England, four volumes of which he had completed and published, ...
— The Canadian Elocutionist • Anna Kelsey Howard

... which had agitated England, with the rest of Europe, came to a close in 1815. Immediately afterward domestic polities needed adjustment. "The disabilities were swept away," says a writer, "the House of Commons was reconstituted, the municipalities were reformed, slavery was abolished."[142] In due time the nation became adjusted to peace; the popular mind lost its nervousness; the universities returned to their ...
— History of Rationalism Embracing a Survey of the Present State of Protestant Theology • John F. Hurst

... at once. But journalism was always open to a man with brains, and through journalism one got into the House, when the chance came along. The House of Commons was dangerously in want ...
— Lady Connie • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... should be sacrificed to content the multitude. Sir William Temple writes:—"We only disagreed in one point, which was the leaving some priests to the law upon the accusation of being priests only, as the House of Commons had desired; which I thought wholly unjust. Upon this point Lord Halifax and I had so sharp a debate at Lord Sunderland's lodgings, that he told me, if I would not concur in points which were so necessary for the people's satisfaction, he would tell everybody ...
— A Lecture on the Study of History • Lord Acton

... people's representatives! This part of the Spartan constitution has not, I think, been sufficiently considered in what seems to me its true light; namely, that of a representative government. The ephoralty was the focus of the popular power. Like an American Congress or an English House of Commons, it prevented the action of the people by acting in behalf of the people. To representatives annually chosen, the multitude cheerfully left the management of their interests [136]. Thus it was true that the ephors prevented the encroachments of the popular assembly;—but how? by encroaching ...
— Athens: Its Rise and Fall, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... was fighting at sharps. Metellus having, of all the Roman senators, alone attempted, by the power of virtue, to withstand the violence of Saturninus, tribune of the people at Rome, who would, by all means, cause an unjust law to pass in favour of the commons, and, by so doing, having incurred the capital penalties that Saturninus had established against the dissentient, entertained those who, in this extremity, led him to execution with words to this effect: That it was a thing too easy and too base to do ill; and that to do well where ...
— The Essays of Montaigne, Complete • Michel de Montaigne

... classes were represented. Thus, the clergy were represented by the bishops who sat in the House of Lords; the nobility, by the nobles who had seats in the House of Lords; and the mass of the people, the commons, by the members of the House of Commons. At that time, very few Englishmen could vote for a member of the House of Commons. Great cities like Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester, did not send even one member. When the colonists held that they were not represented in Parliament because they ...
— A School History of the United States • John Bach McMaster

... pride alleviated in some measure, the hardships of poverty; and their wants were seasonably supplied by the ambitious liberality of the candidates, who aspired to secure a venal majority in the thirty-five tribes, or the hundred and ninety-three centuries, of Rome. But when the prodigal commons had not only imprudently alienated the use, but the inheritance of power, they sunk, under the reign of the Caesars, into a vile and wretched populace, which must, in a few generations, have been totally ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 3 • Edward Gibbon

... point whence they had started; there was once more not merely a governing aristocracy and a hereditary nobility—both of which in fact had never disappeared—but there was a governing hereditary nobility, and the feud between the gentes in possession of the government and the commons rising in revolt against the gentes could not but begin afresh. And matters very soon reached that stage. The nobility was not content with its honorary privileges which were matters of comparative indifference, but strove after separate and sole political power, and sought to convert ...
— The History of Rome (Volumes 1-5) • Theodor Mommsen

... bill introduced into the House of Commons by Sir Andrew Agnew, and thrown out by that House on the motion for the second reading, on the 18th of May in the present year, by a majority of 32, may very fairly be taken as a test of the length to which the fanatics, ...
— Sunday Under Three Heads • Charles Dickens

... passed away we find vestiges of the family; and thenceforward discipline advances steadily, though with occasional relapses toward anarchy, until we see the ordered perfection which enables us to have West-end riots and all-night sittings of the House of Commons without any trouble whatever. I do not care much to deal with the times when the members of the families elected each other promiscuously according to the success with which they managed to club their neighbours—in ...
— The Ethics of Drink and Other Social Questions - Joints In Our Social Armour • James Runciman

... the effect of the entire appeal was to elicit from the great man the kindest possible invitation. He would be delighted to see me, especially if I should turn up on the following Saturday and would remain till the Monday morning. We would take a walk over the Surrey commons, and I could tell him all about the other great man, the one in America. He indicated to me the best train, and it may be imagined whether on the Saturday afternoon I was punctual at Waterloo. He carried his benevolence to the point ...
— The Author of Beltraffio • Henry James

... enlightened politician in Europe. In the same way it is startling to think that within three years of the beheading of Lewis the Sixteenth, there was probably not one serious republican in the representative assembly of France. Yet it is always so. We might make just the same remark of the House of Commons at Westminster in 1640, and of the Assembly of Massachusetts or of New York as late as 1770. The final flash of a long unconscious train of thought or intent is ever a surprise and a shock. It is a mistake to set these swift changes down ...
— Critical Miscellanies (Vol. 1 of 3) - Essay 1: Robespierre • John Morley

... the council were sent into all the bailiwicks, to lay before the assembled commons, first the treaty itself, and then, a written explanation of its several articles, and ask their patient examination of it, and also a communication of their views, in writing, to the government. With the league and its significance to the Confederacy ...
— The Life and Times of Ulric Zwingli • Johann Hottinger

... do anythink o' the kind; leastways, unless there turns out to be short commons 'board this eer craft. Then I'll croak, an' no mistake. But I say, old boys, how 'bout the grog? Reg'lar allowance, I hope—three ...
— The Flag of Distress - A Story of the South Sea • Mayne Reid

... peculiar privilege as the correspondent of PUNCHINELLO, I was on the floor of the House of Commons when Mr. GLADSTONE made his short speech, on the 25th, about England and possessions. I was standing by the O'DONOHUE when the Minister said, "A free and voluntary contract is the only basis for ...
— Punchinello, Vol. 1, No. 8, May 21, 1870 • Various

... uncertainty in the House of Commons last Wednesday, as to what should be taken to constitute "A Religious Body." Not to go harking back to the Rev. SYDNEY SMITH'S definition of "a Corporation"—which, without speaking it profanely, cannot be here quoted without ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 104, March 4, 1893 • Various

... bogs, would be rated very low. It would be in the power of Government to take up largely and at small cost large areas of Surrey heaths, etc., to provide air and recreation ground for an evergrowing metropolis. In this manner, too, public commons and quasi-public commons might be secured to the public all over England: a public-spirited town-council or a local Kyrle Society would have a wide field and an ...
— Speculations from Political Economy • C. B. Clarke

... ever done in the House of Commons," says a Labour speaker. He forgets that the cleaners are at work in the ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 159, September 1st, 1920 • Various

... party, and speeches for carrying on the war, etc. Sentiments of the Tories and House of Commons against continuing the war for setting King Charles upon ...
— The History of John Bull • John Arbuthnot

... civilisation which could not understand them; and, whatever worldly honours may have come to mock their later years, they have been weakened and embittered by early solitude of spirit. No artistic genius of the past has been put through such cruel tests, has been kept on such miserably short commons, as have our artists of the last hundred years, from Turner to Rossetti and Watts, from Manet and Degas and Whistler to Rodin and Albert Besnard. And if their work has shown lapses and failings; if it has been, alas, lacking at times in health or joy or dignity or harmony, ...
— Laurus Nobilis - Chapters on Art and Life • Vernon Lee



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