§ MR. H. O. ARNOLD-FORSTER (Belfast, W.)
I beg to ask the Attorney General for Ireland, whether any person can be compelled to serve the office of High Sheriff of a county, or part of a county, in Ireland, such person not possessing a property qualification within such county; whether any such obligation exists or is enforced in England; and, under what statute persons in Ireland not possessing a property qualification as aforesaid can be compelled to serve?
§ *THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR IRELAND (Mr. J. ATKINSON,) Londonderry, N.
The statutes dealing with this matter are 2 Ed. II. c. 4, 4 Ed. III. c. 9, and 5 Ed. III. c. 4, extended to Ireland by Poynings' Act. If the hon. Member refers to them he will himself find that the qualification they prescribe is that the Sheriff must have sufficient land within the county to which he is appointed Sheriff to answer the King or his people. What this is, in value or extent, has never been determined. There is no statute in either county requiring any person to serve as Sheriff. It is an obligation imposed by the Common Law.