Anniversary Days Observance Act 1859
The Anniversary Days Observance Act (22 Vict. c. 2; formal long title An Act to repeal certain Acts and Parts of Acts which relate to the Observance of the Thirtieth of January and other Days) was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which repealed several laws mandating "political services" or "state services": observance by the Church of England and Church of Ireland of certain anniversaries from 17th-century political history.
The laws and observances abolished were specified by various Acts of the Parliament of England, Parliament of Great Britain, or Parliament of Ireland. These acts were repealed in full where they had no other purpose than establishing the relevant observance, and otherwise repealed only in relation to the observance.
|Act||Year passed||Date observed||Event commemorated|
|3 Jac. 1 c. 1||1605||5 November (Guy Fawkes Night)||1605 failure of the Gunpowder Plot. (From 1689, the prayer service also commemorated the landing of William of Orange at Brixham on 5 November 1688 at the start of the Glorious Revolution.)|
|12 Car. 2 c. 14
13 Car. 2 c. 7[n 1]
|1660 and 1661||29 May (Oak Apple Day)||1660 Restoration of the monarchy (Also Charles II's birthday in 1630.)|
|12 Car. 2 c. 30
13 Car. 2 c. 11[n 1]
|1660 and 1661||30 January (King Charles the Martyr)||1649 Execution ("martyrdom") of Charles I|
|24 Geo. 2 c. 23[n 1]||1750||5 November, 29 May, 30 January||As above|
|14 & 15 Car. 2 sess. 4 c. 1 (Irl.)||1662||29 May||As above|
|14 & 15 Car. 2 sess. 4 c. 23 (Irl.)||1662||23 October||1641 Rebellion's failure to capture Dublin Castle|
- This Act confirmed the observance established by the earlier Act(s).
The political and religious aspects of Anglican identity began to separate after Catholic emancipation culminated in the Roman Catholic Relief Act 1829. In the 1850s, moves to increased religious toleration included the Liberty of Religious Worship Act 1855 and the Jews Relief Act 1858. These changes were reflected in June and July 1858, when the House of Lords and House of Commons respectively passed resolutions making loyal addresses to Queen Victoria to remove certain "occasional forms of prayer" from the Book of Common Prayer. These prayers were re-specified by royal proclamation after each new monarch's accession. The Queen-in-Council agreed to consider the matter. After some delay for legal advice, on 17 January 1859 the queen issued a new proclamation removing the prayers. However, the observances which the prayers fulfilled were mandated by various Acts of Parliament; so a bill, initially called the Occasional Forms of Prayer Bill, was introduced in February 1859 to repeal the provisions which were no longer being enforced. Whereas the 1858 petitions had related only to observances in the English Book of Common Prayer, the 1859 bill additionally deleted the 23 October prayer from the Irish Book of Common Prayer. In the House of Lords the bill was renamed the Anniversary Days Observance Bill. It received royal assent on 25 March.
In the House of Lords, the 1858 resolution was supported by most bishops; the Archbishop of Canterbury and bishops of London, of Oxford, and of Cashel spoke in favour, while the Bishop of Bangor opposed it. The Anglo-Catholic liturgist Vernon Staley in 1907 described the deletions as ultra vires because they were done without first obtaining the consent of the Convocations of Canterbury and York; he called them "a distinct violation of the compact between Church and Realm, as set forth in the Act of Uniformity which imposed the Book of Common Prayer in 1662".
- "[22 Vict. c.2] An Act to repeal certain Acts and Parts of Acts which relate to the Observance of the Thirtieth of January and other Days". A collection of the public general statutes passed in the 22nd year of the reign of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. Eyre and Spottiswoode. 1859. pp. 2–3. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "29. A Form of Prayer for the Fifth Day of November; 30. A Form of Prayer for the Thirtieth Day of January; 31. A Form of Prayer for the Twenty-ninth Day of May". The Book of Common Prayer. W. Baxter. 1825. pp. 828–848. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "A Form of Divine Service to be used, October the Twenty Third". The Book of Common Prayer of the Church of Ireland. Society of Archbishop Justus. 1666. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- Hefling, Charles (2006-07-01). "The State Services". In Hefling, Charles; Shattuck, Cynthia (eds.). The Oxford Guide to The Book of Common Prayer: A Worldwide Survey. Oxford University Press. pp. 73–75. ISBN 9780199723898. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- Lacey, Andrew (2003). "Our Own Our Royal Saint". The Cult of King Charles the Martyr. Boydell & Brewer. pp. 236–251. ISBN 9780851159225. Retrieved 7 November 2016.
- Staley, Vernon (1907). "The Commemoration of King Charles the Martyr". Liturgical studies. London: Longmans, Green. pp. 66–83. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- "Political services of the Church of England. Motion for address". Hansard. 28 June 1858. HL Deb vol 151 cc475-9. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Variations in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer". Society of Archbishop Justus. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
The Gunpowder Treason service (for 5 Nov.) was revised in 1690 to include a commemoration of the landing of William III
- "Tables, and Rules for the Moveable and Jmmoveable Feasts; together with The daies of Fasting and Abstinence through the whole year". The Book of Common Prayer: From the Original Manuscript Attached to the Act of Uniformity of 1662 and Now Preserved in the House of Lords. London: Eyre and Spottiswoode. 1892. p. 30.
The 29. day of May, being the day of the birth, and return of King Charles the second.
- Lacey 2003, p.243
- Prior, David (July 2005). "Remember, Remember, the Fifth of November". History Today. 55 (7): 4–5. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
In 1859, in an atmosphere of growing religious toleration, the 1606 Act was abolished.
- "Political services of the Church of England. [resumed]". Hansard. 28 June 1858. HL Deb vol 151 cc481-503. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "The church services. Address moved". Hansard. 13 July 1858. HC Deb vol 151 cc1392-4. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- Staley 1907, p.73
- "Political services of the Church of England. The Queen's answer to address". Hansard. 1 July 1858. HL Deb vol 151 c691. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Occasional forms of prayer. Answer to address". Hansard. 16 July 1858. HC Deb vol 151 cc1604-5. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Occasional forms of prayer. Acts considered in committee. Bill presented. Read 1°". Hansard. 4 February 1859. HC Deb vol 152 cc117-8. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Whitehall, January 17, 1859". The London Gazette (22220): 161. 18 January 1859. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Occasional forms of prayer bill. Second reading". Hansard. 7 February 1859. HC Deb vol 152 cc148-50. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Occasional forms of prayer bill. Second reading". Hansard. 25 February 1859. HL Deb vol 152 cc850–3. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- "Minutes". Hansard. 11 March 1859. HL Deb vol 153 c1. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
Public bills.— [...] 3a Anniversary Days Observance, formerly Occasional Forms of Prayer
- "Minutes". Hansard. 25 March 1859. HL Deb vol 153 c792. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
Public bills.— [...] Royal Assent.— [...] Anniversary Days Observance
- "Statute Law Revision Act 1875 [38 & 39 Vict c 66]". Irish Statute Book. 11 August 1875. Schedule. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- Lacey 2003, pp.244–245
- Staley 1907, p.77
- Staley 1907, p.76