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taixyz1992
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PostSubject: House of Lords   Fri Nov 05, 2010 11:32 am

The House of Lords (commonly referred to as "the Lords" and also known as House of Peers for ceremonial purposes) is the upper house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, the United Kingdom's national legislature. Parliament comprises the Sovereign, the House of Commons (which is the lower house of Parliament and referred to as "the Commons"), and the Lords. The House of Lords, like the House of Commons, assembles in the Palace of Westminster.

Unlike the House of Commons, membership of the House of Lords is not attained by election from the population as a whole, but by inheritance or by appointment (Lords Temporal), or by virtue of their ecclesiastical role within the established church (Lords Spiritual). The Lords Spiritual are 26 senior bishops of the Church of England. The Lords Temporal make up the rest of the membership; of these, the majority are life peers who are appointed by the Monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister. Membership was once a right of birth to hereditary peers but, following a series of reforms, as of 2010[update] only 91, elected by the House from the hereditary peers, remain as members. The number of members is not fixed; as of November 2010[update] the House of Lords had 738 members, as against the fixed 650-seat membership of the House of Commons.[1][2]

The full, formal title of the House of Lords is The Right Honourable the Lords Spiritual and Temporal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled.[3][4]

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