Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Convocation was formerly the name of a provincial ecclesiastical synod. In England the word denotes an assemblage of prelates and inferior clergy, who are summoned by the authority of the Crown, and have not so much legislative power as a certain influence upon the consciences of churchmen. There are two convocations, one for each of the provinces of Canterbury and York, presided over by the archbishops of those provinces respectively. The Convocation of Canterbury sits in two houses; the upper consisting of bishops - formerly of mitred abbots also; and the lower of elected representatives of the clergy, and these houses deliberate apart. The Convocation of York is similarly constituted, but the two bodies do not sit in separate houses. Convocation is generally summoned and prorogued concurrently with Parliament. In 1717 the Bangorian controversy (q.v.) caused the Crown to prorogue it (though it still sat formally), and it was only revived in 1851. Formerly it had the power of taxing the clergy for the purposes of the country, but since the Restoration the clergy have fallen under the general scheme of taxation.