Edwards v Cruickshank: 1840

Lord President Hope described the jurisdiction of supreme courts: ‘With regard to our jurisdiction, and the jurisdiction of the supreme courts in every civilized country with which I am acquainted, I have no doubt. They have power to compel every person to perform their duty – persons whether single or corporate; and, in our noble constitution, I maintain – though at first sight it may appear to be a startling proposition – the law can compel the Sovereign himself to do his duty, ay, or restrain him from exceeding his duty. Your Lordships know that the Sovereign never acts by himself, but only through the medium of his ministers or executive servants; and if any duty is refused to be done by any minister in the department over which he presides, or if he exceed his duty to the injury of the subjects, the law gives redress. In England the Court would proceed, according to the nature of the case, by injunction or mandamus, or a writ of quo warranto. In this country a person would proceed by action or by petition; and, if he was right, a decree would be passed and would be enforced by ordinary process of law.’


Lord President Hope


(1840) 3 D 282



Cited by:

CitedBancoult, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (No 2) HL 22-Oct-2008
The claimants challenged the 2004 Order which prevented their return to their homes on the Chagos Islands. The islanders had been taken off the island to leave it for use as a US airbase. In 2004, the island was no longer needed, and payment had . .
CitedCherry, Reclaiming Motion By Joanna Cherry QC MP and Others v The Advocate General SCS 11-Sep-2019
(First Division, Inner House) The reclaimer challenged dismissal of her claim for review of the recent decision for the prorogation of the Parliament at Westminster.
Held: Reclaim was granted. The absence of reasons allowed the court to infer . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 30 July 2022; Ref: scu.277177