FREE! Click here to Join FunTrivia. Thousands of games, quizzes, and lots more!
Quiz about Traditions of the UK Houses of Parliament
Quiz about Traditions of the UK Houses of Parliament

Traditions of the UK Houses of Parliament Quiz


The UK Houses of Parliament have existed for hundreds of years and their workings are steeped in tradition. This Quiz deals with some of the odder features of their proceedings!

A multiple-choice quiz by Southendboy. Estimated time: 4 mins.
  1. Home
  2. »
  3. Quizzes
  4. »
  5. World Trivia
  6. »
  7. Government
  8. »
  9. U.K. Government

Author
Southendboy
Time
4 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
404,107
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Easy
Avg Score
8 / 10
Plays
681
Awards
Editor's Choice
Last 3 plays: Guest 2 (10/10), bopeep (8/10), cricketumpire (9/10).
- -
Question 1 of 10
1. Sometimes in their debates, Members of Parliament (MPs) in the House of Commons refer to debates or discussions that have taken place in "another place" or "the other place". What is this "other place"? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. Which person has not been allowed to enter the chamber of the House of Commons since January 4, 1642? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. An officer of the House of Lords called "Black Rod" has an important task to carry out at the start of the State Opening of Parliament every year: they go to the House of Commons to summon MPs to the House of Lords to hear the sovereign's Speech. What happens when Black Rod arrives at the door of the chamber? Hint


Question 4 of 10
4. In the House of Commons the Government and Opposition front benches are separated by a table, on either side of which sits a decorated wooden box. What are these boxes called? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. For many years the decisions made in Parliament were recorded and published, but there was no official published transcript of the actual debates; people who made and published these were liable to be imprisoned. In the early 20th Century, however, Parliament decided to publish an official record of debates in hardback volumes. What is the title of this publication? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. The "Father of the House" is a title given to the MP who has served the longest continuous term in the House of Commons. What is the major - indeed, only - responsibility of the bearer of this title? Hint


Question 7 of 10
7. In the House of Lords, who sits on the Woolsack? Hint


Question 8 of 10
8. The Government publishes enormous quantities of documents, including what are called Government Green Papers and Government White Papers. What is the difference between these? Hint


Question 9 of 10
9. There are a number of Parliamentary groups in all areas of the Palace of Westminster. One of these is the 1922 Committee: what is the membership of this group? Hint


Question 10 of 10
10. While the House of Commons is in session, what event takes place there every Wednesday at noon? Hint



(Optional) Create a Free FunTrivia ID to save the points you are about to earn:

arrow Select a User ID:
arrow Choose a Password:
arrow Your Email:




Most Recent Scores
Jul 08 2024 : Guest 2: 10/10
Jul 05 2024 : bopeep: 8/10
Jul 04 2024 : cricketumpire: 9/10
Jun 26 2024 : Wordpie: 8/10
Jun 26 2024 : Guest 5: 1/10
Jun 23 2024 : Davo8: 10/10
Jun 23 2024 : NixB8: 10/10
Jun 23 2024 : Josie9: 7/10
Jun 23 2024 : Barbs1: 10/10

Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. Sometimes in their debates, Members of Parliament (MPs) in the House of Commons refer to debates or discussions that have taken place in "another place" or "the other place". What is this "other place"?

Answer: The House of Lords

MP's use the euphemism "another place" to refer to the House of Lords, and indeed this usage is found in many two-house legislative assemblies such as those of Canada and Australia. Its origins are uncertain, possibly going back to one of the many periods of ill-feeling between the two Houses.

However it's notable that pupils at the English public schools Eton and Harrow (where many UK politicians were educated) use this phrase when referring to each other's school, and students at the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge (again, where many UK politicians were educated) do the same.
2. Which person has not been allowed to enter the chamber of the House of Commons since January 4, 1642?

Answer: The reigning sovereign of the UK

Charles I suspected five MPs of treason so he demanded that Parliament gave them up. When Parliament refused he stormed into the chamber of the House of Commons with a squad of soldiers to seize them. He asked the Speaker where they were; the latter bravely replied "May it please your Majesty, I have neither eyes to see nor tongue to speak in this place but as the House is pleased to direct me, whose servant I am here." Charles commented that "all my birds have flown" and left the chamber. This affair was a disaster for Charles, and within a matter of days the preparations for the Civil War were under way. Since that day no reigning sovereign has been allowed into the chamber of the Commons, so when the sovereign visits Parliament for the State Opening every year they have to read their Speech in the House of Lords.
3. An officer of the House of Lords called "Black Rod" has an important task to carry out at the start of the State Opening of Parliament every year: they go to the House of Commons to summon MPs to the House of Lords to hear the sovereign's Speech. What happens when Black Rod arrives at the door of the chamber?

Answer: The Doorkeepers slam the door in Black Rod's face

The Doorkeepers slam the door of the chamber, whereupon Black Rod knocks three times on the door. Black Rod is then admitted so that the invitation to go to the House of Lords to hear the sovereign's Speech can be issued. This ceremony dates back to the events of 1642 and the forced entry into the chamber of the Commons by King Charles I in his attempt to locate the Five Members, and the barring of the door of the Commons chamber by MPs represents the Commons' independence of the sovereign.
4. In the House of Commons the Government and Opposition front benches are separated by a table, on either side of which sits a decorated wooden box. What are these boxes called?

Answer: Despatch Boxes

The Despatch Boxes act as lecterns from which frontbench MP's make their speeches. The current Despatch Boxes are made of puriri wood and were a gift from the Government of New Zealand. The Box on the Government side contains the religious texts needed to swear in new MPs, while the Box on the Opposition side contains a singed Bible that survived the bombing of the Palace of Westminster by the Germans in 1941.
5. For many years the decisions made in Parliament were recorded and published, but there was no official published transcript of the actual debates; people who made and published these were liable to be imprisoned. In the early 20th Century, however, Parliament decided to publish an official record of debates in hardback volumes. What is the title of this publication?

Answer: Hansard

Hansard is an edited record of what was said in Parliament although not a word-for-word transcript - mistakes, repetitions and redundancies are omitted. It also includes records of votes and written ministerial statements. The report is published daily covering the preceding day, and is followed by a bound final version.

It is named after the 19th Century printer and publisher Thomas Hansard, who was the first official printer to Parliament.
6. The "Father of the House" is a title given to the MP who has served the longest continuous term in the House of Commons. What is the major - indeed, only - responsibility of the bearer of this title?

Answer: To preside over the election of the Speaker of the House of Commons

The title of Father of the House dates back to the late 18th Century, and the role is found in many other foreign legislative bodies. While this isn't a long-standing tradition, only coming into force in 1971, the Father of the House oversees the process of the election of a new Speaker. MPs then drag the successful candidate to the Speaker's seat - a memorial of those times in history when Speakers sometimes ended up literally with their heads on the block (to be precise, seven Speakers were executed between 1394 and 1535).
7. In the House of Lords, who sits on the Woolsack?

Answer: The Lord Speaker of the House of Lords

The Woolsack is a large square cushion covered in red cloth; since 1938 it has been stuffed with wool from around the Commonwealth (although it was found at the time of that re-stuffing that it was stuffed with horsehair!). It dates back to the 14th Century, when the production of wool was a major industry in England; Edward III decreed that the Lord Chancellor should sit on it. Since 2006, however, the Lord Speaker of the House of Lords sits on it.
8. The Government publishes enormous quantities of documents, including what are called Government Green Papers and Government White Papers. What is the difference between these?

Answer: Green papers are consultation documents while White Papers put forward firm policy proposals

A Green Paper is a Government report that acts as a consultation document, asking for comments, debate and discussion, both inside and outside of Parliament, on Government proposals. A White Paper is a more formal document, stating the Government's formal position on an issue and often presenting concrete plans for legislation.
9. There are a number of Parliamentary groups in all areas of the Palace of Westminster. One of these is the 1922 Committee: what is the membership of this group?

Answer: Backbench Conservative MPs

This group of Conservative backbench MPs was founded in 1923 (not 1922!) to provide a mechanism to channel backbenchers' concerns to the Conservative Party leadership; frontbench MPs can attend but not hold office in the group. It meets every week while Parliament is in session, and plays a very important role in the election of the leader of the Party.

By the way, MPs work long hours, and hardly any of them would go home as early as 7.30pm. However, in a tradition that dates back to when the area in which the Palace stands was quite lawless, the Doorkeepers shout out "Who goes home?" at the end of each sitting of the House. So back in the day nervous MPs could group together to deter attack and robbery.
10. While the House of Commons is in session, what event takes place there every Wednesday at noon?

Answer: Questions to the Prime Minister (PMQs)

Questions to the Prime Minister used to be asked at random times, but in the past 50 or so years the procedures have become more regulated. Now the Leader of the Opposition and the Leader of the third largest parliamentary party ask the PM questions for a half-hour period on Wednesdays from noon onwards.

The behaviour of MPs during this session is often somewhat rowdy; this frequent disorder stems back to the days of Edward Heath and Harold Wilson who personally disliked each other.
Source: Author Southendboy

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor stedman before going online.
Any errors found in FunTrivia content are routinely corrected through our feedback system.
7/18/2024, Copyright 2024 FunTrivia, Inc. - Report an Error / Contact Us