1605: 3 James 1 c.21: Restraining abuses by Players

1605: 3 James 1 c.21: An Act to restrain the Abuses of Players.

[The Penalty of Players on the Stage, &c. prophanely abusing the Name of God.]

FOR the Preventing and Avoiding of the great Abuse of the Holy Name of God in Stage-plays, Enterludes, May-games, Shows, and such like; (2) Be it enacted by our Sovereign Lord the King’s Majesty, and by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and the Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the Authority of the same, That if at any Time or Times after the End of this present Session of Parliament, any Person or Persons do or shall in any stage play, Enterlude, Shew, May-game or Pageant, jestingly or profanely speak or use the holy Name of God, or of Christ Jesus, or of the Holy Ghost, or of the Trinity, which are not to be spoken but with fear and Reverence, shall forfeit for every such Offence by him or them committed, ten Pounds: (3) The one Moiety thereof to the King’s Majesty, his Heirs and Successors, the other Moiety thereof to him or them that will sue for the same in any Court of Record at Westminster, wherein no Essoin, Protection or Wager of Law shall be allowed.

[Farther Provisions relating hereto, 10 Geo. 2. c. 19. 12 Geo. 2. c. 28. & 25 Geo. 2. c. 36.]

Source: Ruffhead, Statutes at Large, volume 3.

See also: Statutes of the Realm, volume 4 part 2.

Repealed by: Theatre Regulation Act, 1843.

Further reading: Wikipedia.