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ARCHES COURT Definition & Legal Meaning

Definition & Citations:

In English ecclesiastical law. A court of appeal belonging to the Archbishop of Canterbury, the judge of which is called the “Dean of the Arches,” because his court was anciently held in the church of Saint Mary-le-Bow, (Sancta Maria de Arcubux,) so named from the steeple, which is raised upon pillars built archwise. The court was until recently held in the hall belonging to the College of Civilians, commonly called “Doctors’ Commons.” It is now held in Westminster Hall. Its proper jurisdiction is only over the thirteen peculiar parishes belonging to the archbishop in London, but, the ollice of Dean of the Arches having been for a long time united with that of the archbishop’s principal official, the Judge of the Arches, in right of such added office, it receives and determines appeals from the sentences of all inferior ecclesiastical courts within the province. 3 Bl. Comm. 04.


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