Know Your Mace – Senate

Article 5 / 10 , Vol 41 No. 2 (Summer)

Know Your Mace – Senate

The origins of the Senate mace are not precisely known. There is some evidence that this mace was used by the Legislative Council of the Province of Canada from 1841 to 1867. It was probably used even earlier by the Legislative Council of Lower Canada. Portions of the mace seem to date from the early nineteenth century, while other parts are almost certainly of later date.

The mace is carried before the Speaker in the parade which marks the opening of a Senate sitting and is placed on the Table with the crown pointed to the Throne of Canada while the Senate is sitting.

The Senate mace is made mainly of brass with some sections plated in gold. The arms plate fixed below the crown shows the armorial bearings of King George III in use between 1801 and 1816. The Great Seal of Lower Canada is also embossed on the head of the mace along with the English rose and the Scottish thistle entwined, the Irish harp, and the French fleur-de-lys each surmounted by a crown.

When the mace is placed upon the Table, the Great Seal of Lower Canada always faces up.