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viz judge of probate, sheriff, register of probate, or register of deeds; and never more than any two offices which are to be held by appointment of the governor, or the governor and council, or the fenate, or the house of reprefentatives, or by the election of the people of the ftate at large, or of the people of any county, military offices, and the office of juftice of the peace excepted, fhall be held by one person,

No perfon holding the office of judge of the fupreme judicial court, fecretary, attorney-general, folicitor-general, treasurer or receiver-general, judge of probate, commiffary-general; prefident, profeffor, or inftructor of Harvard College; fheriff, clerk of the house of reprefentatives, regifter of probate, regifter of deeds, clerk of the fupreme judicial court, clerk of the inferior court of common-pleas, or officer of the customs, including in this description naval officers, shall at the fame time have a feat in the fenate or house of reprefentatives; but their being chofen or appointed to, and accepting the fame, fhall operate as a refignation of their feat in the fenate or house of reprefentatives, and the place fo vacated fhall be filled up.

And the fame rule fhall take place in cafe any judge of the faid fupreme judicial court, or judge of probate, fhall accept a feat in council; or any councillor fhall accept of either of those offices or places.

And no perfon fhall ever be admitted to hold a feat in the legislature, or any office of truft or importance under the government of this commonwealth, who fhall, in the due courfe of law, have been convicted of bribery or corruption in obtaining an election or appointment.

III. In all cafes where fums of money are mentioned in this conftitution, the value thereof fhall be computed in filver, at fix fhillings and eight-pence per ounce and it shall be in the power of the leg flature from time to time to increase fuch qualifications, as to property of the perfons to be elected into offices, as the circumftances of the commonwealth fhall require.

IV. All commiffions shall be in the name of the commonwealth of Maffachusetts, figned by the governor and attefted by the fecretary or his deputy, and have the great feal of the commonwealth affixed thereto.

V. All writs iffuing out of the clerk's office in any of the courts of law fhall be in the name of the commonwealth of Maffachusetts they fhall be under the feal of the court from whence they iffue: they fhall bear teft of the first justice of the court to which they fhall be returnable, who is not a party, and be figned by the clerk of fuch court.

VI. All the laws which have heretofore been adopted, used and approved in the province, colony, or ftate of MafiachusettsBay, and ufually practifed on in the courts of law, fhall still re

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main and be in full force, until altered or repealed by the legiflature; fuch parts only excepted as are repugnant to the rights and liberties contained in this conftitution.

VII. The privilege and benefit of the writ of habeas-corpus fhall be enjoyed in this commonwealth, in the most free, eafy, cheap, expeditious and ample manner; and fhall not be. fufpended by the legislature, except upon the most urgent and preffing occafions, and for a limited time, not exceeding twelve months.

VIII. The enacting ftyle in making and paffing all acts, ftatutes, and laws, fhall be, Be it enacted by the fenate and house of reprefentatives in general court affembled, and by the authority of the fame.'

IX. To the end there may be no failure of juftice, or danger arife to the commonwealth from a change of the form of government-all officers, civil and military, holding commiffions under the government and people of Maflachusetts-Bay in New-England, and all other officers of the faid government and, people, at the time this conftitution fhall take effect, fhall have, hold, ufe, exercife, and enjoy, all the powers and authority to them granted or committed, until other perfons fhall be appointed in their ftead And all courts of law fhall proceed in the execution of the business of their refpective departments; and all the executive and legislative officers, bodies, and powers, fhall continue in full force, in the enjoyment and exercife of all their trufts, employments, and authority, until the general court, and the fupreme and executive officers under this conftitution, are defignated and invefted with their respective trufts, powers and authority.

X. In order the more effectually to adhere to the principles of the conftitution and to correct thofe violations which by any means may be made therein, as well as to form fuch alterations as from experience fhall be found neceffary, the general court which fhall be in the year of our Lord one thousand feven hundred and ninety-five fhall iffue precepts to the felectmen of the feveral towns, and to the affeffors of the unincorporated plantations, directing them to convene the qualified voters of their respective towns and plantations, for the purpose of collecting their fentiments on the neceffitv or expediency of revifing the conftitution, in order to amendments.

And if it fhall appear by the returns made, that two-thirds of the qualified voters throughout the ftate who fhall affemble and vote in confequence of the faid precepts are in favour of such revifion and amendment, the general court fhall iffue precepts, or direct them to be iffued from the fecretary's office, to the feyeral

veral towns to elect delegates to meet in convention, for the purpofe aforefaid.

The faid delegates to be chofen in the fame manner and proportion as their reprefentatives in the fecond branch of the legiflature are by this conftitution to be chofen.

XI. This form of government fhall be enrolled on parchment, and depofited in the fecretary's office, and be a part of the laws of the land; and printed copies thereof fhall be prefixed to the book containing the laws of this commonwealth, in all future editions of the faid laws..


Atteft. SAMUEL BARRET, Secretary.


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RHODE-ISLAND CHARTER, granted by King Charles II. in the Fourteenth Year of his Reign.

Quintadecima pars Patentium Anno Regni Regis Caroli Secundi Quintodecimo.


HARLES the Second, by the grace of God, &c. To all to whom these prefents fhall come, greeting. Whereas we have been informed by the petition of our trufty and well beloved fubjects, John Clarke, on the behalf of Benedict Arnold, William Brenton, William Codington, Nicholas Eafton, William Boulton, John Porter, John Smith, Samuel Gorton, John Weekes, Roger Williams, Thomas Olney, Gregory Dexter, John Cogefhall, Jofeph Clarke, Randall Houlden, John Greene, John Roome, Samuel Wildbore, William Field, James Barker, Richard Tew, Thomas Harris, and William Dyre, and the reft of the purchasers, and free inhabitants of our island called Rhode-Ifland, and the rest of the colony of Providence Plantations, in the Narraganset-Bay in New England in America, That they, purfuing with peace and loyal minds their fober, ferious, and religious intentions, of godly edifying themselves and one another in the holy Christian faith and worship as they were perfuaded, together with the gaining over and converfion of the poor ignorant Indian natives in those parts of America to the fincere profeffion and obedience of the fame faith and worship, did not only by the confent and good encouragement of our royal progenitors, tranfport themselves out of this kingdom of England into America; but also since their arrival there, after their first fettlement among other our subjects in those parts, for the avoiding of difcord and those many evils which were likely to enfue upon those our fubjects not being able to bear in thofe remote parts their different apprehenfions in religious concernments; and in purfuance of the aforesaid ends did once again leave their defirable stations and habitations, and with exceffive labour and travail, hazard and charge, did tranfplant themselves into the midst of the Indian natives, who, as we are informed, are the most potent princes and people of all that country; where, by the good providence of God (from whom the plantations have taken their name) upon their labour and in


duftry, they have not only been preferved to admiration, but have increased and profpered, and are feized and poffeffed, by purchafe and confent of the faid natives, to their full content, of fuch lands, iflands, rivers, harbours, and roads, as are very convenient both for plantations, and alfo for building of hips, fupply of pipe-ftaves, and other merchandise, and which lye very commodious in many refpects for commerce, and to accommodate our fouthern plantations, and may much advance the trade of this our realm, and greatly enlarge the territories thereof; they having, by near neighbourhood to, and friendly fociety with, the great body of the Narraganset Indians, given them encouragement, of their own accord, to fubject themselves, their people and lands, unto us; whereby, as is hoped, there may, in time, by the bleffing of God upon their endeavours, be laid a fure foundation of happiness to all America. And whereas, in their humble addrefs, they have freely declared, That it is much on their hearts (if they be permitted) to hold forth a lively experiment, that a moft flourishing civil ftate may ftand, and best be maintained, and that among our English subjects, with a full liberty in religious concernments; and that true piety, rightly grounded upon gofpel principles, will give the best and greateft fecurity to fovereignty, and will lay in the hearts of men the strongest obligations to true loyalty: Now, know ye, That we being willing to encourage the hopeful undertaking of our faid loyal and loving fubjects, and to fecure them in the free exercife and enjoyment of all their civil and religious rights appertaining to them, as our loving fubjects; and to preferve unto them that liberty in the true Chriftian faith and worship of God which they have fought with fo much travail, and with peaceable minds and loyal fubjection to our royal progenitors and ourselves, to enjoy ; and because fome of the people and inhabitants of the fame colony cannot, in their private opinion, conform to the public exercife of religion, according to the liturgy, form, and ceremonies of the church of England, or take or subscribe the oaths and articles made and established in that behalf; and for that the fame, by reafon of the remote diftances of thofe places, will, as we hope, be no breach of the unity and uniformity established in this nation, have therefore thought fit, and do hereby publish, grant, ordain, and declare, that our royal will and pleafure is, That no perfon within the faid colony, at any time hereafter, shall be anywife molefted, punished, difquieted, or called in question, for any differences in opinion in matters of religion, who do not actually disturb the civil peace of our faid colony; but that all and every perfon and perfons may, from time to time, and at all times hereafter, freely and fully have and enjoy his and their own judgements and confciences, in matters of religious concernments, throughout the track of land hereafter-mentioned, they behaving themfelves

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