Given the number of Parliamentary Miscellanies I’ve read over the years, probably the most important aspect of this volume by Clerk of the House of Commons Robert Rogers is that very little of the content in it felt familiar. That’s the case even though I’ve also read his previous volume, Order! Order!
One reason for this is that Rogers has a good eye for the Parliamentary detail which tells the reader something about wider society rather than simply being of interest to political enthusiasts. For example, he includes the Fifty New Churches Act of 1711 – an Act instigated by a severe shortage of churches in London with only one in three of the population provided for. That casts a rather different light on the levels of religious observance in the early 18th century than is usually assumed.
It is that sort of detail which makes this an enjoyable read and a great present not only for political enthusiasts but also more generally for people interested in reading history. The originality of its content means that applies even if they are someone who has already read or heard lots about Parliament.