The Houses of Parliament

From the centre of Westminster Bridge, one can have a splendid view of the Houses of Parliament which spread magnificently on the north bank of the Thames.

This structure is a remarkable example of Gothic architecture. The Clock Tower, which contains the hour-bell called “Big Ben”, is known the world over. The bell is named after Sir Benjamin Hall, under whose direction the Houses of Parliament were rebuilt in 1850.

The Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland consists of the House of Lords and the House of Commons. The House of Lords consists of just over 1000 members of the different grades of nobility — dukes, marquises, earls, viscounts and barons. In the House of Commons there are 635 members. The name of the “Commons”, by which it is called, does not mean the “common people”, but the local “communities” in different parts of the country. They are elected by secret ballot by the people of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland aged 18 and over. Every Parliament is limited to duration of five years

the House of Lords — Палата лордов

the House of Commons — Палата общин

nobility — дворянство, знать

duke — герцог

marquis — маркиз

earl — граф

viscount — виконт

baron — барон

by secret ballot — тайным голосованием

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