A writ in acceleration, commonly called a writ of acceleration, was a type of writ of summons that enabled the eldest son and heir apparent of a peer with multiple peerage titles to attend the British or Irish House of Lords, using one of his father's subsidiary titles. This procedure could be used to lower the average age of the house, and increase the number of capable members in a house that drew on a very small pool of talent (a few dozen families in its early centuries, a few hundred in its later centuries), without increasing the effective size of the peerage and thereby diluting the exclusivity of noble titles.
The procedure of writs of acceleration was introduced by King Edward IV in the mid 15th century. It was a fairly rare occurrence, and only 98 writs of acceleration were issued in over 400 years. The last writ of acceleration was issued in 1992 to the Conservative politician and close political associate of John Major, Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, Viscount Cranborne, the eldest son and heir apparent of the 6th Marquess of Salisbury. He was summoned in his father's junior barony of Baron Cecil of Essendon and not in his courtesy title of Viscount Cranborne. The procedure of writs of acceleration was abolished through the House of Lords Act of 1999, along with the automatic right of hereditary peers to sit in the House of Lords.
Read more about Writ Of Acceleration: Procedure, Notable Examples, Alternatives, Writs of Accelerations To The English, Later British House of Lords, Writs of Accelerations To The Irish House of Lords
Famous quotes containing the word writ:
“If you have writ your annals true, tis there
That, like an eagle in a dove-cote, I
Fluttered your Volscians in Corioles.
Alone I did it.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)