24 FEBRUARY 1866, Page 1

There have been few examples of more rapid legislation than

this Act. Notice of its introduction the next day was given on Friday night in both Houses. On Saturday at twelve Sir George Grey made his statement, and the debate in the Commons took place. It was read twice, approved in committee without a divi- sion, read a third time, and passed before five o'clock. Then it went up to the Lords, and was passed without any speeches except from Lord Russell and Lord Derby. Then Lord Granville went down with it to Osborne for the Queen's assent, whence he was expected to return by half-past eleven. The Speaker, who had a Parliamentary dinner, broke it up at eleven, in order to make a House, and a good many Peers were in attendance. There was, however, an unexpected delay. The Bill did not return from Osborne with Her Majesty's assent till one o'clock on Sunday morning, when the Lords were getting sleepy and very few—there were only just a quorum—and the Commons were weary with waiting. The Queen's assent being then formally declared, the Bill became law.