Constitution of 1782

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The Constitution of 1782 is a collective term given to a series of legal changes which freed the Parliament of Ireland, a Medieval parliament consisting of the Irish House of Commons and the Irish House of Lords, of legal restrictions that had been imposed by successive Norman, English, and later, British governments on the scope of its jurisdiction. These restrictions had, in effect, allowed the Irish executive of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland to control the parliamentary agenda and to restrict its ability to legislate rather than promote the objectives of the monarchy.

The most punitive restrictions arose in Poynings' Law of 1495. These restrictions were lifted in 1782, producing a period of novel legislative freedom. This period came to be known as Grattan's Parliament after Henry Grattan, a major campaigner for reform in the House of Commons and leader of the Patriot Party.

The new constitutional arrangements proved short-lived in consequence of the 1798 uprising by the United Irishmen. By the Acts of Union the Parliament of Ireland was abolished, and the Kingdom of Ireland absorbed into the new United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, with effect from 1 January 1801.

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