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Good Parliament

Good Parliament (1376). This Parliament saw the first use of impeachment by the Commons, and the emergence of the office of Speaker. There was widespread discontent with an ineffective and apparently corrupt government. Charges were brought against the chamberlain, William Latimer; a London merchant much involved in government finance, Richard Lyons; the king's mistress Alice Perrers; the steward of the royal household, John Neville, and others. It appears to have been the knights of the shire who led the attack, though it may be relevant that Peter de la Mare, the Speaker, was the earl of March's steward. The Commons' triumph did not last long; the government, guided by John of Gaunt, undid most of their work in the following year. Those who had been found guilty received royal pardons, and Peter de la Mare was imprisoned.

Michael Prestwich

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