Cite as: 539 U. S. 607 (2003)
Opinion of the Court
Roberts, The Impeachment of the Earl of Clarendon, 13 Camb. Hist. J. 1, 13 (1957) (hereinafter Roberts, Impeachment); accord, G. Miller, Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon 21-22 (1983); 10 Dictionary of National Biography 383 (L. Stephen & S. Lee eds. reprint 1922). See also Roberts, The Law of Impeachment in Stuart England: A Reply to Raoul Berger, 84 Yale L. J. 1419, 1426 (1975); R. Berger, Impeachment: The Constitutional Problems 45, n. 193 (1974) (acknowledging and not contradicting the historian Henry Hallam's conclusion that " 'one of the articles did actually contain an unquestionable treason' "). And it was on the basis of this specific charge—a charge of conduct that amounted to treason—that the House of Commons (which had previously refused to impeach Clarendon on other charges that did not amount to treason) "voted to impeach Clarendon for high treason." Roberts, Impeachment 13; accord, Clarendon's Trial 350-351.
The House of Lords initially thought that the Commons had failed to provide sufficient evidence because it failed to provide "special articles" laying out "particulars to prove it." Roberts, Impeachment 14. The Lords and Commons deadlocked over whether a "general charge" was sufficient. Ibid. See also Clarendon's Trial 351-374. But Clarendon fled, thereby providing proof of guilt. 10 Dictionary of National Biography, supra, at 383; see also Clarendon's Trial 389- 390; 2 H. Hallam, Constitutional History of England: From the Accession of Henry VII to the Death of George II, p. 373 (8th ed. 1855). See also Berger, supra, at 44-45, and n. 189. The Lords and Commons then agreed to banish Clarendon. The Act of banishment—the only item in this complicated history explicitly cited by Chase—explained that Clarendon was being banished because he had "been impeached by the Commons . . . of Treason and other misdemeanours" and had "fled whereby Justice cannot be done upon him according to his demerit." 19 & 20 Car. II, c. 2 (1667-1668) (reprint 1963).
623Page: Index Previous 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 Next
Last modified: October 4, 2007