Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V22, Page 765 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
Spread the word: it!
QUO WARRANTO, in English law, the name given to an ancient prerogative writ calling upon any person usurping any office, franchise, liberty or privilege belonging to the Crown, to show " by what warrant " he maintained his claim, the onus being on the defendant. It lay also for non-user or misuser of an office, &c. If the Crown succeeded, judgment of forfeiture or ousterlemain was given against the defendant. The procedure was regulated by statute as early as 1278 (the statute of Quo Warranto, 6 Edw. I. c. 1), passed in consequence of the commission of quo warranto issued by Edward I. A distinction was drawn in the report between libertates, jurisdiction exercised by the lord as lord, and regalia, jurisdiction exercised by Crown grant. After a time the cumbrousness and inconvenience of the ancient practice led to its being superseded by the modern form of an information in the nature of a quo warranto, exhibited in the King's Bench Division either by the attorney-general ex officio or by the king's coroner and attorney at the instance of a private person called the relator. The information will not be issued except by leave of the court on proper cause being shown. It does not lie where there has been no user or where the office has determined. Nor does it lie for the usurpation of every kind of office. But it lies where the office is of a public nature and created by statute, even though it is not an encroachment upon the prerogative of the Crown. Where the usurpation is of a municipal office the information is regulated by 9 Anne c. 25 (1711), under which the defendant may be fined and judgment of ouster given against him, and costs may be granted for or against the relator. Such an information must, in the case of boroughs within the Municipal Corporations Act 1882, be brought within twelve months after disqualification (s. 225); in the case of other boroughs, within six years after the defendant first took upon himself the office (32 Geo. III. c. 58, s. 2). The information in the nature of a quo warranto, though nominally a criminal, has long been really a civil proceeding, and has recently been expressly declared to be so (Supreme Court of Judicature Act 1884, s. 15). In cases not falling within q Anne c. 25, judgment of ouster is slot usually given. The most famous historical instance of quo warranto was the action taken against the corporation of London by Charles II. in 1684. The King's Bench adjudged the charter and franchises of the city of London to be forfeited to the Crown (State Trials, vol. viii. 1039). This judgment was reversed by 2 Will. & Mary, sess. 1, c. 8; and it was further enacted, in limitation of the prerogative, that the franchises of the city should never be seized or forejudged on pretence of any forfeiture or misdemeanour. In Scotland the analogous procedure is by action of declarator. In the United States the right to a public office is tried by quo warranto or similar procedure, regulated by the state laws. Proceedings by quo warranto lie in a United States court for the removal of persons holding office contrary to art. xiv. s. 3 of the Amendments to the Constitution (act of the 31st of May 187o, C. 14). R THE twentieth letter in the Phoenician alphabet, the nineteenth in the numerical Greek, the seventeenth in the ordinary Greek and the Latin and (owing to the addition of J) the eighteenth in the English. Its earliest form in the Phoenician alphabet when written from right to left was A , thus resembling the symbol for D with one side of the triangle prolonged. In Aramaic and other Semitic scripts which were modified by opening the heads of the letters, the symbol in time became very much changed. Greek, however, maintained the original form with slight variations from place to place. Not infrequently in the Greek alphabets of Asia Minor and occasionally also in the West, R was written as D, thus introducing a confusion with D (q.v.). Elsewhere a short tail was added, as occasionally in the island of Melos, in Attica and in western Greece, but nowhere does this seem to have been universal. The earliest Latin forms are exactly like the Greek. Thus in the very early inscriptions found in the Forum in 1899 R appears as q (from right to left), P and D (from left to right). Later the forms R and R come in; sometimes the back is not quite connected in the middle to the upright, when the form R is produced. The name of the Semitic symbol is Resh; why it was called by the Greeks Rho (pf) is not clear. The h which accompanies r in the transliteration of Greek p, indicates that it was breathed, not voiced, in pronunciation. No consonant varies more in pronunciation than r. According to Brockelmann, the original Semitic r was probably a trilled r, i.e. an r produced by allowing the tip of the tongue to vibrate behind the teeth while the upper surface of the tongue is pressed against the sockets of the teeth. The ordinary English r is also produced against the sockets of the teeth, but without trilling; another r, also untrilled, which is found in various parts of the south of England, is produced by turning up the tip of the tongue behind the sockets of the teeth till the tongue acquires something of a spoon shape. This, which is also common in the languages of modern India, is called the cerebral or cacuminal r, the former term, which has no meaning in this connexion, being only a bad translation of a Sanscrit term. The common German r is produced by vibrations of the uvula at the end of the soft palate, and hence is called the uvular r. There are also many other varieties of this sound. In many languages r is able to form syllables by itself, in the same way that 1, m, n may do, as in the English brittle (brill), written (ritn). In Europe r with this value is most conspicuous in Slavonic languages like Bohemian (Czech) and Croatian; in English r in this function is replaced by a genuine vowel in words like mother (man). This syllabic r is first recorded for Sanscrit, where it is common, but is replaced in the languages descended from Sanscrit by r and a vowel or by a vowel only, according to the position in which it occurs. Most philologists are of opinion that syllabic r existed also in the mother-tongue of the Indo-European languages. (P. Gr.)
End of Article: QUO WARRANTO
QUOINS (an old variant spelling of " coin," from La...

Additional information and Comments

There are no comments yet for this article.
» Add information or comments to this article.
Please link directly to this article:
Highlight the code below, right click and select "copy." Paste it into a website, email, or other HTML document.