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Constitution of 1852

The Constitution of 1852 came into effect under Kamehameha III, the originator - along with his chiefs - of Hawaii's first constitution. This second document resulted from legislative action calling for a review of the 1840 constitution. A three-man commission with members appointed by the king, the House of Nobles and the House of Representatives proposed revisions that produced an almost entirely new document. After adding some amendments, the legislature approved the new constitution and the king signed it into law June 14, 1852.

The Constitution of 1852 expanded the Declaration of Rights segment, granting adult male suffrage for the first time. It changed the House of Nobles from a hereditary body to one in which members were appointed for life by the king. It further defined and separated the three branches of government by legislative, judicial and executive function - more closely following the American model - thereby placing more checks on the monarch.

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The actual text of the Constitution of 1852

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