Mr. Pettigrew-Robinson was angry, quite simply, because the detective from Scotland Yard had not accepted his help in searching the house and grounds for footprints. As an older man of some experience in these matters (Mr. Pettigrew-Robinson was a county magistrate) he had gone out of his way to place himself at the man's disposal.
In the courts of England and Wales, magistrates—also known as justices of the peace (JPs)—hear prosecutions for and dispose of 'summary offences' and some 'triable-either-way offences' by making orders in regard to and placing additional requirements on offenders. Magistrates can only sentence for six months for one offence and twelve months consecutively, they can also give a maximum of a £5,000 fine; community orders which can include curfews, electronic tagging, requirements to perform unpaid work up to 300 hours or supervision up to three years and or various other options.
There are two types of magistrate in England and Wales: justices of the peace and district judges (formerly known as stipendiary magistrates) permanently employed by the Ministry of Justice (until May 2007, the Department for Constitutional Affairs). Justices of the peace sit voluntarily, apart from an allowance being paid for loss of earnings, mileage and subsistence (which are at a standardised rate agreed by the Ministry of Justice). According to requirements, around 50% of them are women. The majority are seen as "middle class, middle aged and middle minded" and over 41% of magistrates are retired from employment while others may be self-employed or able to arrange leave from their employment.
No formal qualifications are required but magistrates need intelligence, common sense, integrity and the capacity to act fairly. Membership is widely spread throughout the area covered and drawn from all walks of life. All magistrates receive training over a period of three months before sitting, carried out in conjunction with a mentoring program (mentors are magistrates with approximately five years service), which covers basic law and procedure and then continue to receive training throughout the first two years of their service and subsequently attend annual 'refresher courses.' Additional training is given to magistrates in the Youth Court, or those dealing with family matters. New magistrates sit with mentors on at least six occasions during their first year.
Magistrates are unpaid appointees but they may receive allowances to cover traveling expenses, subsistence and loss of earnings for those not paid by their employer whilst sitting as a magistrate.
Not only had the man been short with him, but he had rudely ordered him out of the conservatory, where he (Mr. Pettigrew-Robinson) had been reconstructing the affair from the point of view of Lady Mary.
All these angers and embarrassments might have caused less pain to the company had they not been aggravated by the presence of the detective himself, a quiet young man in a tweed suit, eating curry at one end of the table next to Mr. Murbles, the solicitor.
Tweed is a rough, unfinished woollen fabric, of a soft, open, flexible texture, resembling cheviot or homespun, but more closely woven. It is made in either plain or twill weave and may have a check or herringbone pattern. Subdued, interesting colour effects (heather mixtures) are obtained by twisting together differently coloured woolen strands into a two- or three-ply yarn.
Tweeds are desirable for informal outerwear, being moisture-resistant and durable. Once worn in, tweeds are commonly worn for outdoor activities such as shooting and hunting, in both Ireland and the United Kingdom.
Solicitors are lawyers who traditionally deal with any legal matter including conducting proceedings in courts. In the United Kingdom, a few Australian states and the Republic of Ireland, the legal profession is split between solicitors and barristers (or, in Scotland, advocates), and a lawyer will usually only hold one title.
This person had arrived from London on Friday, had corrected the local police, and strongly dissented from the opinion of Inspector Craikes.
If the individual in question is not of the “gentleman” class, he or she is referred to as a "person".
He had suppressed at the inquest information which, if openly given, might have precluded the arrest of the Duke. He had officiously detained the whole unhappy party, on the grounds that he wanted to re-examine everybody, and was thus keeping them miserably cooped up together over a horrible Sunday; and he had put the coping-stone on his offences by turning out to be an intimate friend of Lord Peter Wimsey's, and having, in consequence, to be accommodated with a bed in the gamekeeper's cottage and breakfast at the Lodge.
The coping stone is another term for the capstone – the covering of a wall to endure that water will run off it freely.
Mr. Murbles, who was elderly and had a delicate digestion, had travelled up in a hurry on Thursday night. He had found the inquest very improperly conducted and his client altogether impracticable. He had spent all his time trying to get hold of Sir Impey Biggs, K.C., who had vanished for the week-end, leaving no address.
Queen's Counsel (or QC), known as King's Counsel (or KC) during the reign of a male sovereign, are lawyers appointed by letters patent to be one of "Her [or His] Majesty's Counsel learned in the law". Membership exists/existed in various Commonwealth countries around the world and it is a status, conferred by the Crown, that is recognised by courts. Members have the privilege of sitting within the Bar of court.
As members wear silk gowns of a particular design, the award of Queen's or King's Counsel is known informally as "taking silk". Appointments are made from within the legal profession on the basis of merit rather than a particular level of experience, however successful applicants tend to be solicitor advocates, barristers or advocates (in Scotland) with 15 years or more experience.
He was eating a little dry toast, and was inclined to like the detective, who called him “Sir,” and passed him the butter.
“Is anybody thinking of going to church?” asked the Duchess.
“Theodore and I should like to go,” said Mrs. Pettigrew-Robinson, “if it is not too much trouble; or we could walk. It is not so very far.”
“It's two and a half miles, good,” said Colonel Marchbanks.
Mr. Pettigrew-Robinson looked at him gratefully.
“Of course you will come in the car,” said the Duchess. “I am going myself.”
“Are you, though?” said the Hon. Freddy. “I say, won't you get a bit stared at, what?”
“Really, Freddy,” said the Duchess, “does that matter?”
“Well,” said the Hon. Freddy, “I mean to say, these bounders about here are all Socialists and Methodists....”
Socialism is an economic system in which the means of production are either state owned or commonly owned and controlled cooperatively; or a political philosophy advocating such a system. As a form of social organization, socialism is based on co-operative social relations and self-management; relatively equal power-relations and the reduction or elimination of hierarchy in the management of economic and political affairs.
Methodism is a movement of Protestant Christianity represented by a number of denominations and organizations, claiming a total of approximately seventy million adherents worldwide. The movement traces its roots to John Wesley's evangelistic revival movement within Anglicanism. The Methodist Church is known for its missionary work, and its establishment of hospitals, universities, orphanages, soup kitchens, and schools to follow Jesus' command to spread the Good News and serve all people.
Wesley, along with his brother founded the Holy Club while they were at Oxford, where John was a fellow and later a lecturer at Lincoln College. The holy club met weekly and they systematically set about living a holy life. They were branded as "Methodist" by students at Oxford who derided the methodical way they ordered their lives. Wesley took the attempted mockery and turned it into a title of honour. Initially Whitefield and the Wesleys merely sought reform, by way of a return to the gospel, within the Church of England, but the movement spread with revival and soon a significant number of Anglican clergy became known as Methodists in the mid-18th century. The movement did not form a separate denomination in England until after John Wesley's death in 1791.
“If they are Methodists,” said Mrs. Pettigrew-Robinson, “they will not be at church.”
“Won't they?” retorted the Hon. Freddy. “You bet they will if there's anything to see. Why, it'll be better'n a funeral to 'em.”
Methodists regard the funeral service as an opportunity to express their grief, celebrate the life of the deceased and affirm their faith.“Surely,” said Mrs. Pettigrew-Robinson, “one has a duty in the matter, whatever our private feelings may be—especially at the present day, when people are so terribly slack.”
After World War I, several old customs and constraints began to be flouted – such as women wearing more revealing clothing and so on.
She glanced at the Hon. Freddy.
“Oh, don't you mind me, Mrs. P.,” said that youth amiably. “All I say is, if these blighters make things unpleasant, don't blame me.”
“Whoever thought of blaming you, Freddy?” said the Duchess.
“Manner of speaking,” said the Hon. Freddy.
“What do you think, Mr. Murbles?” inquired her ladyship.
“I feel,” said the lawyer, carefully stirring his coffee, “that, while your intention is a very admirable one, and does you very great credit, my dear lady, yet Mr. Arbuthnot is right in saying it may involve you in some—er—unpleasant publicity. Er—I have always been a sincere Christian myself, but I cannot feel that our religion demands that we should make ourselves conspicuous—er—in such very painful circumstances.”
Mr. Parker reminded himself of a dictum of Lord Melbourne.
After listening to an evangelical sermon developing the virtues of a religion compulsory upon the daily life of all men Lord Melbourne is reported to have remarked: "Things have come to a pretty pass when religion is allowed to invade the sphere of private life."
Viscount Melbourne, of Kilmore in the County of Cavan, was a title in the Peerage of Ireland held by the Lamb family. This family descended from Matthew Lamb, who represented Stockbridge and Peterborough in the House of Commons. In 1755 he was created a Baronet, of Brocket Hall in the County of Hertford, in the Baronetage of Great Britain. Lamb married Charlotte, daughter of Thomas Coke, through which marriage Melbourne Hall in Derbyshire came into the Lamb family.
The Melbourne who said the above quote was William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne. He was a noted Whig politician and served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom in 1834 and from 1835 to 1841. He was Queen Victoria's first Prime Minister, and she greatly relied upon his wisdom and experience in her early days on the throne, such that Melbourne's political foes complained that he had enthralled her.