Parliament

A parliament is a legislature whose power and function are similar to those dictated by the Westminster system of the United Kingdom. More generally, "parliament" may simply refer to a democratic government's legislature. The term is derived from the French parlement, the action of parler (to speak): a parlement is a discussion. The term came to mean a meeting at which such a discussion took place. It acquired its modern meaning as it came to be used for the body of people (in an institutional sense) who would meet to discuss matters of state.

Generally, a parliament has three functions: representation, legislation and parliamentary control (i.e., hearings, inquiries).

Read more about Parliament:  Origins, Parliament Government, Proto-parliamentarian Institutions, Parliaments of The United Kingdom

Famous quotes containing the word parliament:

    At the ramparts on the cliff near the old Parliament House I counted twenty-four thirty-two-pounders in a row, pointed over the harbor, with their balls piled pyramid-wise between them,—there are said to be in all about one hundred and eighty guns mounted at Quebec,—all which were faithfully kept dusted by officials, in accordance with the motto, “In time of peace prepare for war”; but I saw no preparations for peace: she was plainly an uninvited guest.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    A Parliament is that to the Commonwealth which the soul is to the body.... It behoves us therefore to keep the facility of that soul from distemper.
    John Pym (1584–1643)

    Undershaft: Alcohol is a very necessary article. It heals the sick—Barbara: It does nothing of the sort. Undershaft: Well, it assists the doctor: that is perhaps a less questionable way of putting it. It makes life bearable to millions of people who could not endure their existence if they were quite sober. It enables Parliament to do things at eleven at night that no sane person would do at eleven in the morning.
    George Bernard Shaw (1856–1950)