Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 17, 1701-1705. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Veneris, 17 Martii.
E. Berkeley takes the Oaths.
Message from H. C. with a Bill.
Accomptants, to be charged with Interest Money, Bill.
Message from H. C. with a Bill.
Who brought up a Bill, intituled, "An Act for the better and more regular paying and assigning the Annuities, after the Rate of Three Pounds per Cent. per Annum, payable to several Bankers and other Patentees, or those claiming under them;" to which they desire the Concurrence of this House.
Bank Annuities, 3 per Cent. Bill.
Hodie 1a vice lecta est Billa, intituled, "An Act for the better and more regular paying and assigning the Annuities, after the Rate of Three Pounds per Centum, payable to several Bankers and other Patentees, or those claiming under them."
Messages from H. C. to return Barbier & al. Nat. Bill; and Briscoe's Bill.
To return the Bill, intituled, "An Act to naturalize Daniel Barbier, John Kerron du Chesne, and others;" and to acquaint this House, that they have agreed to the same, with some Amendments, whereunto they desire their Lordships Concurrence.
To return the Bill, intituled, "An Act for the Improvement of the Estate of John Briscoe Esquire, in the County of Cumberland;" and to acquaint this House, that they have agreed to their Lordships Amendments made to the said Bill.
Lists of Justices of Peace delivered.
Recruits for Land Service and Marines, Bill.
Whereas this Day was appointed, for the House to be put into a Committee upon the Bill, intituled, "An Act for raising Recruits for the Land Forces and Marines; and for dispensing with Part of the Act for the Encouragement and Increase of Shipping and Navigation, during the present War:"
It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That this House shall be put into a Committee thereupon, on Monday next, at Twelve a Clock; and all the Lords summoned to attend.
Ballot for Persons to be Commissioners for taking the Public Accompts.
Irish Commons Address, relating to the Linen Manufacture, Report about.
"The Lords Committees appointed to consider of an Address of the House of Commons of Ireland to Her Majesty, laid before this House, by Her Majesty's Command, the Fourth of January last; whereby they desire Liberty for carrying the Linen manufactured there directly to the English Plantations; and also the Report of the Judges, as to the Laws concerning the English Plantations, so far as the same relate to Ireland, and the Customs upon Linen exported out of and imported into England, have met several Times, according to the Order of the House. They began with taking into Consideration the Address of this House, on the Ninth of June 1698, whereby the House did desire His late Majesty to declare to the Subjects of Ireland, in the most public and effectual Way that might be, that the Growth of the Woollen Manufacture there would be looked upon with great Jealousy by the Subjects of England, and, if not timely prevented, might occasion strict Laws totally to suppress the same; and that, on the other Hand, if they turned their Industry to the settling and improving the Linen Manufacture, they should receive all Countenance, Favour, and Protection, for the Encouragement and Promoting of the same to all the Advantage and Profit that Kingdom could be capable of. They then proceeded to consider how the Laws stood at present; and as to that they found, that, by the Act of Navigation made in the Twelfth Year of the Reign of King Charles the Second, Ireland stood upon the same Foot with England in relation to the Plantation Trade, so that it was then lawful to carry out all Goods from Ireland to the Plantations as well as from England, and to bring the Goods of the Plantations from thence directly to Ireland as well as to England, the Shipping and Mariners of Ireland being then equally privileged with those of England: But that afterwards, by the Act for the Encouragement of Trade, made in the Fifteenth Year of the same Reign, it was enacted, That no Commodity, of the Growth, Production, or Manufacture of Europe, should be imported into the English Plantations, but what should be shipped in England, Wales, or Berwick, and in English-built Shipping, or Ships qualified as is thereby directed; and whereof the Master and Three Fourths of the Mariners at least were English, under the Penalty of Forfeiture of Ship and Goods. But in the same Act there is an Exception in Favour of Ireland, that it should be lawful to ship and lade in such Ships, and so navigated, all Sorts of Victuals of the Production of Ireland, and also Servants and Horses; and by another Act, made in 22d and 23d Car. IIdi, Cap. 26. taking Notice, That, notwithstanding the last mentioned Act of 15 Car. II. Advantage was taken of the not repealing the Word Ireland, which was mentioned in the Act 12 Car. II. It was therefore enacted, That the Word Ireland should be lest out of all such Bonds, which should be taken for any Ship sailing for any English Plantation; and that, in case the Ship should lade any of the said Commodities at any of the said Plantations, the same should be brought to some Port of England or Wales, or to Berwick, and there to be unladen, under the Penalty of the Forfeiture of the Ship and Goods. They find also that, by an Act made in the First Year of Her present Majesty's Reign, intituled, &c An Act for Explanation of a Clause in One Act made in the Seventh Year of His late Majesty's Reign, relating to Borelaps, and to take off the additional Subsidy upon Irish Linen, all Sorts of Hemp and Flax, and the Product thereof, as Thread, Yarn, and Linen, being of the Growth and Manufacture of Ireland, may be imported into England directly from Ireland, by any Native of England or Ireland, free from all Duties and Customs whatsoever.
"The Committee, being informed that this Matter had been under the Consideration of the Council of Trade and the Commissioners of the Customs, sent to the said Boards, to know what had been done by them respectively in this Affair. From the Council of Trade, there was laid before the Committee, a Report made by them the Three and Twentieth of December last, upon an Order of Council; whereby they reported to Her Majesty, "That the Privilege desired by the House of Commons in Ireland was contrary to the Law; and that they could not advise an Alteration of the Acts of Trade and Navigation in this Particular, the Intent of the Acts being to maintain the Plantations in a firm Dependance upon England, and for making this Kingdom the Staple of Commodities of other Countries; and that, under the Colour of Linen, other Commodities might be exported fraudulently and clandestinely from Ireland to the Plantations, to the great Prejudice of England."
"The Commissioners of the Customs attended the Committee, and gave them an Account of their having communicated their Thoughts to Mr. Attorney General upon this Subject, by Order of the Lord Treasurer; a Copy of which they produced: But the Committee directed them to report their Opinion to their Lordships, as well in respect to the Liberty desired in Behalf of Ireland, as also what Expedients they thought would be most proper to prevent Collusion, or other undue Practices, in case the House should think fit to pass a Bill for allowing the Subjects of Ireland to export Linen Cloth of their own Manufacture from thence to the Plantations: Accordingly they did bring their Report to the Committee; whereby they reported, "That Irish Linen may now be imported into this Kingdom free of all Duties; and so may from thence be exported to the Plantations upon very easy Terms; but that, if they were allowed to carry their own Linen directly to the Plantations, it would open a Way for exporting Scottish Linen under Colour thereof, it being not easy to distinguish the One Manufacture from the other, nor to hinder the secret Conveyance of Linen, out of Scotland into Ireland: That it would hinder the Importation of great Quantities of Linen from Holland, Hamburgh, and The East Country, for the Plantation Consumption, which are sent in Return of the Woollen Manufacture and other Commodities of the Product of this Kingdom: That such a Liberty might prove a Damage to the Navigation of England, and a Loss to the Revenue of the Kingdom, by hindering the Importation of Foreign Linen, and putting the People there upon the prohibiting some of our principal Commodities."
"They also produced to the Committee, an Account of the Quality, Quantity, and Value, of Woollen Manufactures exported from England, to The East Country, Germany, and Holland, from Christmas 1700, to Christmas 1702, in Two distinct Years; the Total of which, from Christmas 1700, to Christmas 1701, amounted to £. 1,556,839. 4s. 81/2; d.; and from Christmas 1701 to Christmas 1702, amounted to £. 1,524,873. 3s. 1d. And also an Account of the Quantity, Quality, and Value, of the German and Holland Linen exported from England to the English Plantations in the same Two Years, amounting, from Christmas 1700 to Christmas 1701, to £. 113,629. 8s. 113/4; d.; and from Christmas 1701 to Christmas 1702, to £. 83001. 10s. 0d. And being directed by the Committee to lay before them an Account of the Quality, Quantity, and Value, of all Sorts of Linen imported from The East Country, Germany, and Holland, into England, for the same Two Years, it appeared to amount, from Christmas 1700 to Christmas 1701, to £. 806,628. 6s. 11/4; d; and from Christmas 1701 to Christmas 1702, to £. 595,241. 19s. 81/4;d.
"The Commissioners of the Customs did also affirm, "That such Liberty as was desired would have a greater Influence upon the Trade of England than appeared at First Sight; because though Ships from Ireland might go to the Plantations with Provisions, Horses, and Servants; yet they could not make a profitable Voyage with those Things only, but must come to England to make up their Cargo; whereas, if they had the Liberty of carrying Linen, they would go directly for the Plantations."
"The Lords Committees also heard the Governour and others of the Hamburgh Company, and also some of the Drapers whose principal Dealing is in sending Linen to the Plantations. They said, "That such a Liberty given to Ireland would be very prejudicial to the Hamburgh Trade, the Irish Linen being for the most Part of the same Sort with that which was imported from Hamburgh: That at least a Tenth Part of the Linen imported from The East Country, Hamburgh, and Holland, was sent to the Plantations; and that many Drapers in London have their whole Subsistance by the Trade of shipping Linen to the Plantations: That Freight is much cheaper in Ireland than in England; and that Sailors Wages was not above Half the Rate there, as here: That the Customs upon Linen imported into England were considerable; and that, if the Importation of Linen was diminished, there would be a proportionable Lessening in the Vent of our Woollen Manufacture in those Countries; and they would be put upon setting up the Woollen Manufacture among themselves."
"The Committee also heard several of the Gentlemen of Ireland; who acquainted them, "That the Application of the People in Ireland to the Linen Manufacture was not a Matter of Choice, but was pursuant to the Desires of the People of England, and to silence a malicious and groundless Calumny, of their affecting an Independence upon England: That all Trade in Ireland would in some Degree affect the Trade of England; but yet they hoped that would not be a sufficient Argument to induce England to debar them of all Trade: That it was impossible for them to hope that the Linen Manufacture would become National, unless the Encouragement was general, which must be by allowing them a Market: That, though they might import their Linen into England Customfree, yet the Profit was too little: That, considering the Freight, which must all be paid down to The West Indies by the Usage of Merchants, the Loss of Time, and Want of Stock, the Trade would not answer; the Charge before it could go from England exceeding the Prime Cost: That, as to the Objection of Collusion, their Ships went now with Provisions directly from Ireland; and that it was a Mistake in the Commissioners of the Customs to say, that Ships, which went with Provisions from Ireland to the Plantations, did use to touch in England; that they believe there could, not be One Instance given of their doing so; but it may be true, that English Ships do often touch in Ireland, for taking in Provisions." They said, "That the importing of Scottish Linen into Ireland is the greatest Prejudice to them that can be, and therefore so high a Duty is laid upon it in Ireland as amounts to a Prohibition; and in Revenge of that, the Scotts have forbidden the importing of Corn from Ireland into that Kingdom; and they are willing to agree to any farther Prohibition of Scottish Linen: And that they are willing to submit to any Regulation for preventing of Collusion, upon the granting such a Liberty to them; but they desire it may not be so restrained as to hinder the Manufacture from becoming universal."
"The Committee desired to be informed of them, "Whether the Linen Manufacture was considerably increased of late?" They said, "It was not; but their Hope was, that in Time this Encouragement might have a good Effect." Being asked, "Whether they did not proceed in planting Hemp, as well as Flax?" They said, "A great Part of Ireland was not fit for Hemp; but that the South Part of Ireland, which had the greatest Temptation to the Woollen Manufacture, would bear Hemp very well." And being also asked, "If it would not encourage the Proceeding of the Hempen Manufacture, in case Her Majesty should think fit to allow them some Privilege as to the furnishing Stores to the Navy?" They said, "Their present Poverty made them uncapable of setting a Foot great Undertakings; but that, if they had a Prospect of something of that Kind, they did believe, in Process of Time, they might make a great Progress in the Hempen Manufacture."
"They said, "That, by the Act of the First of Her present Majesty's Reign, all Sorts of Hemp or Flax, and all the Production thereof, might be imported into England Custom-free; but that it was insisted upon at the Custom-house, that they were to pay a Duty for Flax Seed and Hemp Seed, and Oil made of either of those Seeds, upon Importation, which was a great Discouragement to the Linen Manufacture; because they were under a Necessity of changing their Seed every Year, or at most every other Year; and therefore they desired that this Matter might be made clear by some Clause in an Act of Parliament."
"Upon Consideration of the whole Matter, in regard to the Promise made in the Address of this House to His late Majesty, "That Ireland should receive all Countenance for the Encouragement and Promoting of the Linen Manufacture, to all the Advantage and Profit that Kingdom could be capable of;" and that this was the only Thing which Ireland had as yet desired of England:
"And that there can be no Trade whatsoever in Ireland, but will in some Degree or other affect the Trade of England, and this of the Linen Manufacture seems the least prejudicial; and that it will be a considerable Time before there will be any sensible Diminution in the Importations of Linen from Hamburgh, Holland, and The East Country; and that, when it should grow considerable by the Increase of the Linen Manufacture in Ireland, England would find great Recompence, by their having laid aside the Woollen Manufactures in Ireland:
"And, in order to prevent Collusion, they do propose, That the Exportation may be restrained to some particular Ports in Ireland; and that such other Cautions may be used, both in Ireland and in the Plantations, as are mentioned in the Report of the Commissioners of the Customs.
"The Committee do also humbly offen to the Consideration of the House, Whether it would not be for the Advantage of England, if the Hempen Manufacture was effectually encouraged in Ireland, whereby such Naval Stores as are of the Product of Hemp might be furnished within Her Majesty's own Dominions; and whether that might not be effected, in case Her Majesty would be graciously pleased to encourage the same, by declaring, that such Stores should be used in the Navy preferable to any other Foreign Stores."
Report to be laid before the Queen, and an Address to be drawn.
"It is ORDERED, by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal in Parliament assembled, That the Report be laid before Her Majesty, with the humble Desire of this House thereupon; and that Her Majesty will be pleased to recommend to the Parliament of England, the Address of the House of Commons of Ireland, concerning the Linen Manufacture there, in a convenient Time, and also the Encouragement of the Hempen Manufacture in Ireland; and that the Lords Committees, who drew up this Report, do draw an humble Address, to be presented to Her Majesty, thereupon: Whose Lordships are to meet To-morrow, at Ten a Clock in the Forenoon, in order thereunto."