Parliament

Jake Eller

how and why did the parliament gain power

Nobody set out to create Parliament. It developed naturally out of the daily political needs of the English King and his government. Nor did it develop continuously over time, but went through short periods of rapid growth.Yet despite its unintentional and haphazard development, the modern British Parliament is one of the oldest continuous representative assemblies in the world. How did this happen? It is a story that involves revolt, war, invasion, several dethronings, and even Henry VIII's love life.

how did the English parliament develop and gain power over time

Parliament formed two houses, or groups, to govern the country: the House of Commons and the House of Lords. Parliament would eventually control the collection of taxes. As a result, it could limit the power of the English monarchy. Parliament was also eventually able to introduce and pass laws. The king could not declare new laws without Parliament’s approval. Parliament’s power grew slowly. The changes mentioned above took centuries to develop. Wars were even fought over the question of Parliament’s authority. But the legal and constitutional practices of medieval England would be a guide to later political thinkers.

how did the English parliament become a model for our representative form of gonverment

Independent judiciaries, citizens’ rights, and democratic forms of government did not exist in medieval England as we know them today. Like Parliament, developing these ideas and institutions would take centuries. During their development, however, the legal and constitutional practices of medieval England often became a guide.