Story: Parliament

The mace

The mace

The mace (foreground) is the symbol of the speaker of the House's authority and is carried by the serjeant at arms as he leads the speaker into and out of the debating chamber. The mace had its origins in medieval England, in the weapons carried by the serjeants at arms, who were bodyguards to the king, and had the power to arrest without a warrant.

Using this item

Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives
Photograph by Todd Crawford

This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

John E. Martin, 'Parliament - Structural changes, 1890s to 1950s', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 4 July 2022)

Story by John E. Martin, published 20 Jun 2012, updated 1 Feb 2015