Lord Privy Seal is one of the traditional sinecure offices in the British Cabinet. Though one of the oldest offices in government anywhere, since it has no particular function the office has generally been used as a kind of Minister without Portfolio. Since the end of the prime ministership of Margaret Thatcher, the position of Lord Privy Seal has frequently been combined with that of Leader of the House of Lords. The jocular clarification that the office holder is neither a lord, nor a privy, nor a seal, though sometimes credited to Edward Heath, was attributed by him to Ernest Bevin.
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