Star Chamber, in early English history, meeting room for the King's advisors. The room was located in Westminster Palace, London, and derives its name from the stars which decorated the ceiling of the chamber. During the 1400s these advisors evolved into a powerful council that assumed courtlike powers. It was officially set up in 1487. Operating outside common law, with no jury, it was speedy and efficient but also arbitrary and cruel, particularly under James I and Charles I. It was abolished by the Long Parliament (1641) for its abuses.
See also: United Kingdom.