House of Lords

The Occom Circle

House of Lords


London, England


The House of Lords is the upper chamber of Great Britain's bicameral legislature, with the House of Commons as the lower chamber. The House of Lords originated in the 11th century when Anglo-Saxon kings consulted religious leaders, and emerged as a distinct part of Parliament in the 13th-14th centuries. It currently consists of: 1) the Lords Spiritual, the archbishops and bishops of England; 2) since 1999, 92 heredity peers (titled nobility); 3) from 1980, all appointed life peers and peeresses; 4) the Law Lords, judges of the Court of Appeal and High Court of Justice. Although the House of Lords was initially the more powerful of the two bodies, by the late 17th century, the power of the monarch and the House of Lords had declined. The limitations on the House of Lords was institutionalized in the Parliament Acts of 1911 and 1949. The House of Lords cannot originate bills but can only veto them, and now functions mostly to revise bills it receives from the House of Commons.


"The House of Lords." Encyclopedia Britannica.; "Parliament." Encyclopedia