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On this day.

1641: In London, the Star Chamber was abolished.

The chamber was made up of judges and privy councillors and grew out of the medieval king's council as a supplement to the regular justice of the common-law courts. It achieved great popularity under Henry VIII for enforcing the law when other courts were unable to do so because of corruption.

The court used the procedures of the king's council and depositions were taken from witnesses but no jury was used. The arbitrary punishments included imprisonment, the pillory, whipping and branding but never death. When Charles I started to use it to enforce unpopular political and ecclesiastical policies, it became a symbol of oppression of his Puritan opponents and was abolished by the Long Parliament in 1641.

Also on This Day:

1817: The gold sovereign coin was first issued; 1826: Death of the founder of Singapore Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles; 1841: Travel agents Thomas Cook and Son founded; 1853: Birth of empire builder Cecil Rhodes; 1945: Labour Party received its first absolute majority; 1948: The National Health Service came into operation; 1969: The Rolling Stones gave a free concert in Hyde Park to an audience of 250,000 people three days after Brian Jones' death.
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jul 5, 2001
Words:203
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