United States Statutes at Large/Volume 1/5th Congress/2nd Session/Chapter 36

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May 3, 1798.
Chap. ⅩⅩⅩⅥ.—An Act to authorize certain Officers and other persons to administer oaths.[1]


Section 1. President of the Senate, Speaker, &c. authorized to administer oaths, &c. to witnesses.Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, a chairman of a committee of the whole, or a chairman of a select committee of either house, shall be empowered to administer oaths or affirmations to witnesses, in any case under their examination.

Sec. 2. Penalty on swearing falsely.And be it further enacted, That if any person shall wilfully, absolutely and falsely swear or affirm, touching any matter or thing material to the point in question, whereto he or she shall be thus examined, every person so offending, and being thereof duly convicted, shall be subjected, to the pains, penalties and disabilities, which by law are prescribed for the punishment of the crime of wilful and corrupt perjury.

Approved, May 3, 1798.


  1. An act to extend the provision of the act to authorize certain officers and other persons, to administer oaths, May 3, 1798; also act of February 8, 1817, chap. 10.