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'The Torn Journal'

In 1621 there was increasing tension between King James I and the House of Commons. In the winter of that year matters came to a head when the King forbade the Commons to discuss the matter of the proposed marriage of his son Charles to the daughter of the King of Spain.  In response, on 18 December, a protestation recording the privileges of the House was recorded in the journal of proceedings.

James could not accept that the Commons held their privileges by inheritance, believing that they were a royal gift. The Clerk of the House, John Wright, was summoned before the king, who tore the record of the protestation from the journal.


Manuscript Journal of the House of Commons ['The Torn Journal']


26 Nov 1621 - 18 Dec 1621

Catalogue number

Parliamentary Archives HC/CL/JO/1/11