Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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[13 March, 1642/3.]
The Lords and Commons in Parliament assembled, foreseeing the great Inconveniencies. Distractions, and Troubles, that must of necessity befal these Kingdoms of England and Ireland, by the approaching of Foreign Forces now in Preparation against the well-affected Subjects of both the said Kingdoms, and that the woeful Effects thereof do begin to appear, by the Narrow Seas being already infested, not only by Sea Rovers with Commissions from the Rebels in Ireland, but also by Pirates of our own Nation, lately come forth of Falmouth, in English Bottoms, to destroy their own Countrymen, and in all Probability to join with our Foreign Enemies, and so hinder all the good Endeavours of the Parliament for Relief of distressed Ireland, and interrupt all Trade and Commerce in these Seas.
Wherefore the said Lords and Commons, for the Prevention of these great Mischiefs, do once more Declare and Ordain, That the Fleet now in Preparation to go forth, and all Things thereunto conducing, may hasten to Sea with all possible Expedition; and that, for the better encouragement of the Officers and Seamen who shall be employed in the King's Ships, besides their Pay, One full Third Part of all Prizes that they shall take in this their Employment, the other Two Thirds to be reserved to the State; and to those in the Merchants Ships, One full Third Part for the Officers and Seamen, and another Third Part to the Owners in respect of their hazarding their Ships, and the other Third Part reserved to the State as aforesaid, which divisions are to be according to the Custom of Men of War.