How Irish statutes were made
Selected information on each bill is recorded in the Database: the legislative body which initiated it; the dates of the key stages; the decisions of the privy councils; and the names of members associated with certain stages.
There are major differences in legislative procedure before and after the session of 1783. These affect the treatment of bills in the Database and the ways in which bills are displayed.
The origins of bills and ‘heads of bills’ (1692 to 1782)
From bills to acts (1692 to 1782)
Once ‘transmitted’ (to use the contemporary term) to the English privy council all bills were afterwards treated in the same manner, whether they had begun as heads of bills or Irish privy council bills.
The reformed constitution (1783 to 1800)
From 1783 heads of bills no longer existed, and the Irish privy council had no role in Irish legislation. The English privy council retained powers to supervise Irish legislation, but these were very rarely exercised.
From 1783 until the last session of the Irish parliament in 1800 all bills began in parliament, where they underwent all stages before being transmitted directly to the English privy council. On return they received the royal assent in parliament.
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