There is no RationalWiki without you. We are a small non-profit with no staff – we are hundreds of volunteers who document pseudoscience and crankery around the world every day. We will never allow ads because we must remain independent. We cannot rely on big donors with corresponding big agendas. We are not the largest website around, but we believe we play an important role in defending truth and objectivity.
If everyone who saw this today donated $5, we would meet our goal for 2021.
| Fighting pseudoscience isn't free.|
We are 100% user-supported! Help and donate $5, $20 or whatever you can today with !
| A guide to|
|God Save the Queen?|
The term rotten borough refers to boroughs (electoral districts) in the UK prior to the 1832 Reform Act which had minimal numbers of voters (the inhabitants were all never-enfranchised sheep, or the constituency was underwater, there being no permanently based submarine dwellings), but could be assigned at the will of the owner of the land.
Also known as a "pocket borough."
Its use has much declined since the abolition of most rotten boroughs. Most people probably only know it through the first episode of Blackadder The Third, where Blackadder makes use of a rotten borough to swing a vote in the Prince Regent's favour. Satirical and current affairs magazine Private Eye uses the term "Rotten Boroughs" as the title to one of its columns listing wrongdoings by local government powers in the UK.