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


Cursing. Swearing and cursing are offences against God and religion. By an Act of Parliament passed in the nineteenth year of the reign of George II., which repealed all former statutes on this subject, every labourer, sailor, or soldier profanely cursing or swearing shall forfeit 1s., every other person under the degree of a gentleman 2s., and every gentleman or person of superior rank 5s., applicable to the poor of the parish wherein such offence is committed; and on a second conviction shall forfeit double, and for every subsequent offence treble the sum first forfeited, with all charges of conviction, and (in default of payment) shall be sent to the house of correction for ten days. Any justice of the peace may convict upon his own hearing or the testimony of one witness; and any constable or peace officer, upon his own hearing, may secure the offender and carry him before a justice, and there convict him; but the conviction must be within eight days after the commission of the offence; and if either omits his duty, the justice forfeits £5 and the constable 40s. There is also a penalty of 40s, imposed by the "Town Police Clauses Act, 1847," and "Metropolitan Police Act," for profane language in the streets. Cursing, or wishing ill to the Sovereign, or doing anything to lessen him in the esteem of his subjects, or to weaken his government, is also an offence punishable by fine and imprisonment, and also corporal punishment.