Created By: ArtyMorty on December 16, 2011 Last Edited By: ArtyMorty on November 17, 2012

Gavel Meeting

enhancing the importance of a meeting with a little wooden hammer

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Up for Grabs.

I'm not sure if there is a trope at all.

A Gavel is a little mallet that probably many people associate with a judge and an auctioneer. But on several occasions I have seen that they are used by the chairman of a meeting e.g. Mayor Quimby from The Simpsons uses one on Town meetings. Since I'm not familiar with gavel use in general I wonder if this is a trope at all.

Community Feedback Replies: 17
  • December 16, 2011
    Fleegle uses an oversized one to call to order meetings of The Banana Splits.
  • December 16, 2011
    Allow me to say this for once, but I think this is actually People Sit On Chairs. Gavels are actually used very commonly in courtrooms that it might be impossible to name off every example that includes this.
  • December 16, 2011
    Gavels are actually used much less in actual courtrooms. The use of a gavel to enhance the gravitas of a judge is actually a trope, though a near-omnipresent one.
  • December 16, 2011
    It might be Charis but I'm giving a couple of examples anyway.
    • Horse Feathers: Groucho as Professor Wagstaff bangs his gavel for emphasis in the song "Whatever it is [bang] I'm Against It."
    • The Little Rascals had a club where they had occasional meetings, and the chair used a makeshift gavel to quiet them down.
  • December 17, 2011
    This might actually convey a message/information to the audience (and thus not be People Sit On Chairs). When someone bangs a gavel it tells the audience "This is the person in charge of the meeting/event" without having to come out and say it.

    Gavel Of Authority? Gavel Banging Equals Authority?

    • Young Frankenstein. The townspeople are meeting to decide what to do about Frederick Frankenstein. While one of them is trying to stir up a lynch mob, a town elder bangs a gavel to stop things from getting out of hand.

    Watch it here.
  • December 17, 2011
    Everything's More Solemn With Gavels?
  • December 17, 2011
    In Alice In Wonderland, the March Hare pulls out a huge mallet and uses it as a gavel when he calls for changing the subject of conversation. He then whacks the Mad Hatter on the head with it.
  • December 17, 2011
    • The Chinese judges used one, as demonstrated repeatedly by Judge Dee. It's name translates roughly to "the gavel that puts fear in the room".
    • Touhou: the local judge of the dead has one called the Rod of Remorse.
    • One Batman The Animated Series episode had Two-Face being stalked by a Vigilante Man calling himself the Judge. Instead of a gavel however, he uses a great big sledgehammer. The Judge is actually a different personality of Harvey Dent aka Two-Face.
  • December 17, 2011
    When the bikers of Sons Of Anarchy have a club meeting (aka "church") the club president has a gavel. It's mainly symbolic and when there is talk of replacing Clay as club president, they refer to it as deciding who will 'hold the gavel'.
  • December 17, 2011
    I'm going to suggest Gavel Of Gravitas, though gavels are often used in comedies to underscore the chairman's lack of control.
  • December 17, 2011
    Yeah this could be Chairs.
  • December 17, 2011
    How about excluding Gavel use in courts and just take examples where they are banged to restore order or when the meeting is over.
    • The Cleveland Show: In Cleveland Jr. Cherry Bomb Lester dismisses the group from their discussion with a gavel from the bar.
    • Nikita Khrushchev once used a shoe instead of a Gavel.
  • December 19, 2011
    • perhaps Police Squad? One episode featured a judge who got murdered by a rigged gavel that exploded when he banged it.
  • December 27, 2011
    • The Warblers from Glee hold them to lead their Glee Club, in stark contrast to New Directions how just sort of throw whatever together for their songs.
  • December 27, 2011
    The impression I get from the laconic is that this this trope is about the use of gavels in settings where you wouldn't normally expect them, but the example in the OP and all the subsequent discussion don't back this up, suggesting this is for any use of a gavel in some sort of meeting, including in court.

    And now for something completely different.
  • January 12, 2012
  • November 17, 2012
    Regina uses a gavel during a town meeting in Once Upon A Time. She begins banging it when Emma tries to expose her for stealing funds.