Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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[27 February, 1643/4.]
Ordinance for Reprisals.
Forasmuch as divers Ships and Goods, heretofore taken and surprized by the Ships employed in the immediate Service of the King and Parliament, have been, by definitive Sentence in the High Court of Admiralty, according to certain Ordinances made by the Lords and Commons now assembled in Parliament, adjudged for lawful Prize: The said Lords and Commons do thereby Order and Ordain, That Thomas Smith Esquire, and John Hill Merchant, shall be, and are appointed, Collectors, by themselves and their lawful Deputies, to receive and take into his or their Possession all such Ships, or Parts and Shares of such Ships and Goods, which have been already taken and adjudged Prize, or hereafter shall be taken and adjudged Prize as aforesaid, as by the said Ordinances ought to accrue to the State: And, to the Intent that Ships and Goods may be sold for the best advantage of the State, the said Lords and Commons do further Order and Ordain, That such Ships or Part of Ships and Goods shall be truly inventoried and sold (or otherwise disposed of to the Use of the Navy), by the Commissioners hereafter named, or by any Four or more of them, or by Persons by them or any Four of them deputed thereunto, under the Hands and Seals of such Commissioners, or any Four of them; that is to say, by Thomas Andrewes Alderman of London, Morris Tompson, Brian Harrison, Samuell A very, William Methold, John Holland, Richard Cranley, Roger Twidy, John Morris, Andrew Burrell, and Solomon Smith, Gentlemen; who are by this Ordinance nominated, constituted, and authorized, to make Sale, or otherwise to dispose of the said Ships and Goods, for the the best Advantage of the State, according to the true Intent and Meaning of this Ordinance; and are to take Inventories of the same, and keep Accompt of the Monies arising upon such Sale, to the Intent that the several Collectors may be duly charged with the same, and the Monies for which they were sold; which said Collector or Collectors are to make Payment of the said Monies arising upon the Sale of such Ships and Goods, by Order of the Committee of the Navy (who are hereby authorised thereunto), unto the Treasurer of the Navy for the Time being, whose Receipt for the same, together with the Order of the said Committee, shall be a sufficient Discharge for the said Collector or Collectors; and the said Committee for the Navy shall hereby have Power, from Time to Time, to call the said Collector or Collectors, to render to them Accompts of the State's Part of the said Prizes, and of the Sale and Provenue thereof, and the Approbation of the Lord Admiral, to allow out of the Proceed of the said Prizes such Fees and Charges, for the adjudication, Collection, and Disposal thereof, as hath formerly been usual and accustomed in the like Cases; and the rest of the Proceed of those Ships and Goods to dispose for the Use and Benefit of the Navy; and as well the said Commissioners as the Collectors, for their several Doings in Pursuance of this Ordinance, shall be saved and kept harmless by both Houses of Parliament: And finally the said Lords and Commons do hereby Order and Ordain, That several Patents shall be drawn for the said Commissioners and Collectors, in His Majesty's Name, according to the Purport and Meaning of this Ordinance, and sealed and passed under the Great Seal of England, by the Commissioners lately established by the said Lords and Commons; who are required, and shall be hereby warranted, to seal the same; and in the mean Time as well the said Commissioners as the Collectors are hereby authorized to put in Execution this said Ordinance, according to the true Intent and Tenor thereof.