Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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[23 September, 1644.]
The Lords and Commons in Parliament assembled, being fully assured and satisfied of the exceeding Faithfulness of the Inhabitants of the Town of Plymouth, and of the very great Charge and Expence they have been put unto, in Defence of themselves and that Place; and being most sensible of the manifold Miseries and Sufferings that Place hath undergone, by several long and strict Sieges, by Means whereof they are in no sort able of themselves longer to defend that Place; and knowing likewise the imminent Danger that Town now is in, and of what Consequence the Preservation of it is to the whole Kingdom, and how the Interest of Trade is concerned therein; and finding that the Provisions already made are in no sort proportionable to defray the Charge of that Garrison, nor to supply the present Necessities of that Town; do Order and Ordain, That where any Subsidy, Custom, or other Duty, is or shall be laid or imposed, by Authority or Ordinance of both Houses of Parliament, upon any Goods, Wares, or other Merchandizes, of what Nature, Kind, or Quality soever, to be exported out of, or imported into, the Kingdom of England, or Dominion of Wales, that there One-Tenth Part more (over and above the Tenth Part formerly imposed by Ordinance of Parliament of the 15th of November last, for the Defence of the Towns and Ports of Plymouth, the Isle of St Nicholas, the Towns of Poole and Lyme, and Places nigh adjacent) of the Rate of the Custom, Subsidy, or Duties, now paid, or according to the Book of Rates now by such Authority or Ordinance established, be paid and answered, over and above the said Custom, Subsidy, or Duty, from and after the 29th Day of September Instant, of and from all and every such Goods, Wares, and other Merchandize, so to be exported and imported; (that is to say) where Ten Shillings now is paid, there hereafter shall be paid One Shilling more, and after that Rate for more or less, to continue for the space of Six Months, and no longer; and to be received, collected, and taken, by Nathan Wright and Francis Lenthall, of London, Merchants, their Deputy or Deputies, to be employed and disposed of for, in, and about, the Defence of the said Town and Port of Plymouth, and Island of St. Nicholas, and Places adjacent, in such manner as by the Committee of Lords and Commons appointed for the Safety of those Places, shall be Ordered and Directed; and the said Subsidy and Imposition to be paid under such Penalty and Seizures as are established by an Ordinance or Act now in Being, for other Customs and Subsidies already established; and the Collectors shall hereby be secured and saved harmless, by Authority of both Houses of Parliament, in what they shall do in Execution of the Premises: Provided always, That, as touching the Duty hereby imposed, there be no Deduction or Defalcation of Fifteen Pounds per cent.
And it is further Ordered, That all Customers, Comptrollers, and other Officers whom it may concern, in the Port of London, and other the Out Ports, do take particular notice of this Ordinance; who are to pass no Entry until the said Duty hereby imposed be fully and duly satisfied and paid to the said Collectors, or their Deputies, and signified under their Hands in Writing: And it is further Ordained, That there shall be allowed, out of every Twenty Shillings so paid, the Sum of Six Pence, for such Collection.
And it is lastly Ordained, That this Tenth Part now granted is intended, and shall be construed, to extend only unto, and to be taken of, such Duties, Customs, and Subsidies, as were granted, and in Being, before the 15th Day of November, 1643, and before the former Tenth Part formerly mentioned was granted.