Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 12, 1697-1699. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1803.
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Martis, 3 die Januarii;
A PETITION of Sarles Goatly, Robert Hodson, and others, Button-sellers and Makers in and about the Cities of London and Westminster, in the Names of themselves, and others of the same Trade within the Bills of Mortality, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, . . . . by the Wearing of Buttons made by Taylors, of the Shreds of Cloth, and the Stuffs whereof the Garments are made, the Petitioners Trade, which used to employ many Thousands of poor People, is extremely prejudiced; and the Consumption of the Woollen Manufacture is also lessened thereby, by reason the Materials, wherewith Needle-wrought Buttons are made, are brought from Turky; and are the Produce of our Woollen Manufactures: And praying Leave to bring in a Bill for the Petitioners Relief in the Premises.
Ordered, That Leave be given to bring in a Bill, pursuant to the Prayer of the said Petition: And that Mr. Harvey, Mr. Brotherton, Colonel Strangewayes, and Mr. Lee, do prepare, and bring in, the Bill.
A Petition of the Mayor, Aldermen, and Burgesses, and others, the Inhabitants, and Button-makers, in or near the Town of Macclesfeild, in the County Palatine of Chester, in the Name of themselves, and all others of their Trade, in or near the said Town, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That, for many Years past, the Petitioners by their Trades maintained themselves, and Families; but, of late, by reason of the Wearing Buttons made of Cloth and Stuffs, their Trade is so decayed, and they are become so poor, that many of them are become burdensome to their Relations, and the Parishes wherein they live: And praying Leave to bring in a Bill for the Petitioners Relief.
A Petition of the Parishioners and Inhabitants of the ancient Town of Sherborne, in the County of Dorset, and Parishes adjacent, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That, by reason of the general Wearing of Buttons made of the Shreds of Cloth and Stuff, the Petitioners Trade, which used to maintain many Thousands of poor People, is utterly ruined: And praying the Consideration of the House in the Premises.
Selling Cornby Samples.
A Petition of the Mayor, Bailiffs and Commonalty, of the City of Winchester, in the County of Southampton, in the behalf of themselves, and all other the Inhabitants of the said City, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That the Petitioners are very sensible of the great Good and Plenty they, and other adjacent Towns, have received by the late Proclamation for putting the Laws in Execution against Engrossers and Forestallers: But, for that many Farmers do yet sell great Quantities of Corn by Samples only, or at their Dwelling-houses, the Laws are evaded; the Price of Corn is enhanced; and the Poor greatly prejudiced: That the Petitioners observing, by the Votes of this House, the good Intent to preserve a Plenty of Corn, Meal, and Bread, by bringing in a Bill to prohibit the Exportation thereof; they pray, That a Clause may be inserted in the said Bill, to prevent the Selling of Corn by Samples only, or at Farmers own Dwelling-houses.
And a Motion being made, and the Question being put, That the Consideration of the said Petition be referred to the Committee of the whole House, to whom the Bill for the prohibiting the Exportation of Corn, Meal, and Bread, for One Year, is committed.
Ordered, That Leave be given to bring in a Bill for making the River Dee, in the County of Chester, navigable: And that Sir Thomas Grosvenor and Mr. Shackerly, and the Members of the Counties of Chester and Flint, do prepare, and bring in, the Bill.
Billingsgate Fish Market.
Thomas Foley junior, being chosen a Burgess for the Borough of Stafford, in the County of Stafford; and also for the Borough of Droitwich, in the County of Worcester; made his Election to serve for the said Borough of Stafford.
Ordered, That Mr. Speaker do issue his Warrant to the Clerk of the Crown, to make out a new Writ, for electing a Burgess to serve in this present Parliament for the said Borough of Droitwich, in the room of the said Mr. Foley.
Privilege— a Person petitions for discharge.
A Petition of John Leicester, in the Custody of the Serjeant at Arms attending this House, for a Breach of Privilege by him committed, in arresting Mr. William Woollaston, as he was going from the Committee of Privileges and Elections, to which he was summoned as a Witness, was presented to the House, and read: By which, he acknowledged his Offence; and begged Pardon for the same; and prayed to be discharged out of Custody.
Call of the House.
And their Names being called over a Second time, several of them were excused upon account of their being sick; and others upon the Road, coming up; and others upon account of extraordinary Occasions in the Country.
Mr. Speaker communicates a Letter.
A Member desires his Declarations to be taken instead of the Oaths.
Upon the Call of the House it will appear, that I am duly chosen, and returned, to serve in Parliament for the Borough of Chipping-Wycombe, in the County of Bucks; and therefore I request of thee to acquaint the honourable House of Commons the Reason I have not as yet appeared; which is, That the Burgesses being voluntarily inclined to elect me, I did not oppose their Inclinations, believing that my Declarations of Fidelity, &c. might in this Case, as in others where the Law requires an Oath, be accepted; I am therefore ready to execute my Trust, if the House think sit to admit of me thereupon; which I do humbly submit to their Wisdom and Justice; and shall acquiesce with what they will be pleased to determine therein: This being all at present, I remain,