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The Annotated Code of the Public General Laws of Maryland, 1924
Volume 375, Page 44   View pdf image (33K)
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44 CONSTITUTION OF MARYLAND.

Art. 3. The powers not delegated to the United States by the Consti-
tution thereof, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States
respectively, or to the People thereof. '

Art. 4. That the people of. this State have the sole and exclusive right
of regulating the internal government and police thereof, as a free,
sovereign and independent State.

The act of 1812, ch. 194, was continued in force by this article—see notes to art. 8.
Baltimore v. Board of Police, 15 Md. 483.

This article referred to in construing art. 1, secs. 1 to 5, of the Md. Constitution—
see notes thereto. Anderson v. Baker, 23 Md. 619.

Art. 5. That the inhabitants of Maryland are entitled to the Common
Law of England, and the trial by Jury, according to the course of that law,
and to the benefit of such of the English statutes as existed on the Fourth
day of July, seventeen hundred and seventy-six; and which, by experience,
have been found" applicable to their local and other circumstances, and
have been introduced, used and practiced by the Courts of Law or Equity;
and also of all Acts of Assembly in force on the first day of June, eighteen
hundred and sixty-seven; except such as may have since expired, or may
be inconsistent with the provisions of this Constitution; subject, neverthe-
less, to the revision of, and amendment or repeal by, the Legislature of this
State. And the Inhabitants of Maryland are also entitled to all property
derived to them from or under the Charter granted by His Majesty, Charles
the First to Caecilius Calvert, Baron of Baltimore.

Law of England.

This article has no reference to adjudications in England anterior to the coloni-
zation or to the judicial adoptions here of any part of the common law during the
continuance of the colonial government, but to the common law in mass as it
existed here either potentially or practically and as it prevailed in England at the
time, except such portions of it as are inconsistent with the spirit of the Constitu-
tion and nature of our political institutions. Whether particular parts of the com-
mon law are applicable to our. local circumstances, etc., is a question for the courts
to decide; how what the common law of England was at time of the adoption of
the Declaration of Rights is determined. State v. Buchannon, 5 H. & J. 358.

The pre-eminence of the state over the citizen is a necessary incident to sov-
ereignty; it constitutes a branch of the common law adopted by this article (as
it stood in the Constitution of 1776). State v. Milburn, 9 G. 111.

By the common law, to which under this article inhabitants of Maryland are
entitled, no woman could in person take an official part in the state government
except as overseer of the poor, without express statutory authority. This article
referred to in deciding that a woman (independent of statute) is not entitled to
practice law in Maryland. In re Maddox, 93 Md. 731.

This article does not support the contention that the whole common law, as it
existed in Maryland at the time this article was adopted, became a part of the
Constitution, and hence was beyond legislative change. Day v. State, 7 Gill, 325.

This article is not to be. expounded according to the rule of construction ap-
plicable to declaratory laws, but as adopting the different classes of the statutes to
which it relates sub modo only and rejecting all others; and as laying down rules
by which to ascertain what statutes were so adopted—a different rule applying to each
class. What statutes "by experience have been found applicable. " Dashiell v.
Attorney-General, 5 H. &. J. 401.

The marriage acts were not among the " English statutes which existed on
July 4th, 1776, and which by experience have been found applicable, " etc. —see
art. 63, sec. 1 et seq. of Code. Harrison v. State, 22 Md. 487.

The statute of 29th Char. II (statute of frauds), held to be in force in Maryland
by virtue of this article. This article referred to in deciding that an. agreement to
marry after the expiration of three years, need not be in writing. Lewis v. Tapman,
90 Md. 302.

 

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The Annotated Code of the Public General Laws of Maryland, 1924
Volume 375, Page 44   View pdf image (33K)
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