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‘Model’ Parliament

‘Model’ Parliament was the name given by Stubbs to Edward I's assembly at Westminster in November 1295 on the grounds that it was the first to include both knights of the shire and burgesses. But the phrase is inappropriate. Writs found later demonstrate that previous parliaments had a similar composition. Nor was the 1295 composition subsequently followed, since the lesser clergy gradually ceased to be summoned and made do with convocation. But though the 1295 Parliament was less significant than Stubbs believed, it was a very large body. Almost 100 clergy (including 67 abbots), 8 earls, 41 barons, 73 knights, well over 200 burgesses, and 39 royal officials and judges meant that the number summoned certainly exceeded 400.

J. A. Cannon

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Model Parliament

Model Parliament (November 1295) English Parliament summoned by Edward I. For the first time, knights of the shire and burgesses (representatives of the House of Commons) dealt with the affairs of the nation along with the king and barons. This enlargement of the Commons' function was held to be the model for the future. They had previously merely agreed to what the king and the magnates had already decided.

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Model Parliament

Model Parliament: see Parliament.

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