- First in-depth study since the mid-1960s of how Speakers and the Speakership have operated in Parliament in Britain
- Includes contribution by the former Speaker of the House of Commons, Baroness Boothroyd, describing her own tenure of the Speakership
- Covers practice at Westminster and at Dublin and Edinburgh, and a comparison of Speakers at Westminster and Washington during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
- Composed of papers from a conference held at the House of Commons in April 2008
Introduction (Paul Seaward, History of Parliament).
1. Speakers at War in the Late 14th and 15th Centuries (Anne Curry, University of Southampton).
2. The Tudor Speakers 1485–1601: Choosing, Status, Work (Alasdair Hawkyard, Royal Historical Society).
3. Chancellors, Presidents and Speakers: Presiding Officers in the Scottish Parliament before the Restoration (Alan R. MacDonald,University of Dundee).
4. Speakers in the 17th-Century Irish Parliament (Coleman A. Dennehy, St Patrick’s College, Maynooth).
5. The Reputation and Authority of the Speaker and the Speakership of the House of Commons, 1640–60 (Stephen K. Roberts,History of Parliament).
6. The Speaker in the Age of Party, 1672–1715 (Paul Seaward,History of Parliament).
7. The Speakership of the House of Lords, 1660–1832 (Ruth Paley, History of Parliament).
8. Thurlow, Eldon and Lyndhurst and the Management of the House of Lords (Richard W. Davis, Washington University).
9. ‘Nothing Could Exceed the Badness of His Character Even in This Bad Age’ (Sir William McKay,Council of the Law Society of Scotland).
10. The Role of the Speaker in the 20th Century (The Rt Hon. Baroness Boothroyd, MP).