HC Deb 01 April 1867 vol 186 cc902-3

said, he wished to ask Mr. Attorney General, Whether he considers the doubts which have arisen as to the legal time for the publication of Banns of Matrimony in churches during morning service to be well founded; and, if so, whether it is the intention of the Government to introduce a measure during the present Session for removing those doubts, for legalizing Marriages knowingly solemnized without due publication of Banns, and for relieving clergymen who may have celebrated such Marriages from the serious penalties they have incurred under the Act 4 Geo. IV. c. 76?


I do not, Sir, myself entertain any doubt as to the proper time for the publication of banns; but different opinions are held on the subject by gentlemen well entitled to express an opinion. In point of fact, it is well known that marriages have been solemnized at both the times in question. The subject is undoubtedly one of very great importance, and the Government are considering whether it may not be possible to bring in a Bill this Session to remove the doubts and to remedy the consequences of those doubts.