HC Deb 20 February 1872 vol 209 cc765-6

asked Mr. Attorney General, Whether the Statute now in force in the University of Oxford by which a Candidate for the degree of B. A. at that University is required either to pass an examination in the Articles of the Church of England, or to make a declaration that he is not a member of that Church, is not a violation of the second section of the "University Tests Act, 1871," which provides that— No person shall be required upon taking, or to enable him to take, any degree (other than a degree in Divinity) within that University to make any declaration respecting his religious belief or profession.


, in reply, said, that the Question which the hon. and learned Gentleman had put to him arose not on the second section, but upon the third section of the University Tests Act. No doubt such a statute as the Question referred to might be in direct contravention of the University Tests Act; but it was plain that it might be passed and used with no such intention. He was unable to say more than that, because this was a question of law; it was a question of the construction of the University Tests Act, in which he had no more authority than any other hon. Member of the House. He could not take upon himself to pronounce a judicial opinion upon it, nor could Government undertake to enlighten the House on the matter judicially.