Tuesday, March 1.
When a Petition of the importers of Brandy was read.
Mr Garroway.] Would know whether the Distillers
can make such a liquor of our native grain, as shall carry
good to our southerly plantations; and how to make up
the King's revenue, which arises out of foreign Brandy.
If we can make such a liquor, we may spend our growth
of corn that we know not what to do with.
Sir John Knight.] If we do prohibit foreign Brandy
here, yet the French will carry it near to our plantations,
and steal it ashore. If you prohibit it, yet much may
come in notwithstanding, by connivance of searchers,
and stealing it ashore. If it destroys mens bodies, then
prohibit the use of it totally, both foreign and home
Mr Jones, Member for London.] Suppose the Distillers
cannot make so good Brandy, and you prohibit foreign,
and lessen the King's revenue for the private gains of the
Distillers. The shipping, seamen, and trade, are concerned in it; the plantations have good by it; and it
is hard to change the fantasies in the plantations after
long habitude. If you prohibit it not Ireland, still you
will not vend your corn, for the plantations will be supplied besides from France; so that the Distillers cannot
make out what they suggest. Great profit will cause
mens fantasies to be supplied, and licences may be obtained, by favour, to bring it in—Would have these people
satisfy you that there are reasons that may balance your
thoughts against all these considerations. He is bound
to serve that great body he sits here for, London, and
none of them apart, and thinks it worthy the deepest
Colonel Birch.] It seems to him as reasonable for the
Distillers to desire the banishing foreign Brandy, as for
the Clothiers to prohibit foreign Cloth; yet he believes,
though not of grounds of beer, yet we may make as
good of our own decayed Wines and Lees, and so save
our money. The use of foreign Brandy, in any few
years, cannot be hindered; he knows not what time may
do.—Thinks his Majesty's revenue may be supplied.—
Ships go already to Ireland for victuals and wool, and
if they get the trade of Brandy, they will out-trade us.
Their cattle now go to other parts, and all trade from
us along with them. Keep a thing out by prohibitions,
and it will come in as much. They place a middle cask
in the vessel, and pierce the outer vessel where you will,
you shall discover, it may be, Vinegar, or Beer, but no
Brandy—100,000 l. debt to the King upon these cheats
of the Merchant, who must not swear against himself;
and the Merchant pays not, unless it comes safe into his
Sir Robert Howard.] Vend your own corn, and beef
will sell, and all other things. The business of the Irish
cattle, he appeals to all men, has plainly mended us. As
for Brandy, we have death along with it; it burns us up.
Our hot waters are sent to the Indies, good; and suppose we had no Brandy in the world, cannot we live
without it? How have we ever done before? If Brandy
fail, we are not undone; if rents do, we are. In Holland they forbid it, as finding their spirits lessened after
drinking it. If it be stolen in, in the midst of barrels,
it may be made a nusance, or the ship forfeited, and the
Brandy be given to the poor of the parish. It will destroy
Mr Garroway.] If the Dutch have banished Brandy,
and can go to market without it, he knows not why we
should not be as industrious to make liquor of our own.
No danger that it will hurt Ireland; they can shift as
well as we. If care be taken that decayed wines be looked after at the Custom-house, before entered, we shall
have materials; and if the Dutch can do it, why should
Sir William Thompson.] The Dutch do make a certain
liquor, called Rum, which is not so good. The compensation for the King will not be done with 4000 l.
Though logwood be forbidden, yet it is brought in—
Would have a considerable imposition laid at the Customhouse, that it may be as cheap made here as brought in,
and you may have your ends answered.
Sir Richard Temple.] We may satisfy the plantations
with Brandy made of Wine here, as well as from France,
as has been said—Would have the Distillers heard at the
Bar—Would not have it thought that there are not ways
to hinder a commodity coming into England; for if we
can make something like it, or near to it, it is easily
done—Would not have it pass for doctrine, that because
we make a thing a nusance, we distrust the King; but
that the poor might the more easily wage Law against a
combination of Merchants in Ireland—By the Act of
Plantations, they are to take all things from hence, and
bring all things hither, unless with their neighbouring
islands. God has trusted the King, the nation has trusted him, and so must we. Imposition upon Brandy at
home may compensate the King's revenue.
Sir George Downing.] Half the Excise is for ever, and
half for the King's life. Birch's objection "of keeping
the commodity out," is not easily answered. He would
have a duty at the Custom-house, as well as forfeiture of
the commodity; by this means all the officers will be
employed, and it will be reached somewhere, and there
will be no connivance in the case—The strongest string
to your bow will be in the Custom-house, which will
take away all dispensation and composition in the Exchequer—Plantations will require Brandy; they will have it
over the belly of all Laws and Prohibitions. But how
shall a man in judgment give his vote in this case? Distillers speak in their own case, and know not plantations
—If a ship come thither without Brandy, it cannot vent
its commodities. French plantations are within a night's
sail of us; and here our troops of horse, upon the shore,
cannot hinder the shallops in the night from trading with
us by stealth. No Law you can make, can hinder Ireland from trading thither with Brandy—Trade will be
turned into New England, and that trade we would not
Sir Thomas Gower.] Waters of his own making have
passed the Line four times, made of cyder; likewise of
honey. Irish Usquebaugh has been carried to Alexandria,
and back again, good; and from Muscovy the same; it
abides both heat and cold. If we cannot do it so well
as the Hollanders, we surely have more knaves and fools
than they. The King's revenue may be supplied by
what is spent of our own making, and the revenue be
the better, he believes.
Sir Thomas Littleton.] Is informed, that the Dutch
have not prohibited Brandy; it proceeded no farther than
a discourse. The plantations labour so under four per
cent. that the Dutch are rivals to us in their trade: should
you add this farther weight upon them to this they groan
under, they will never bear the load—Would have it
prohibited at home, and, for the Plantations, if exported, the Custom restored again. By that means, you
may see whether ours may do as well as foreign, and not
suffer in the intermission.
Sir Fretchville Holles.] Heretofore in the East India
voyages, when we had only English strong waters, many
miscarried in the voyage, and now not half so many.
Mr Love.] Strong waters, made of barley, are ropy
before they come to the Plantations. Prohibitions rather
increase the commodity. They sell it cheaper, in effect,
considering the duty, than it costs. As Brandy may
come to the Plantations by stealth, so may Sugars, or any
Sir Richard Ford.] Has bought several parcels of strong
waters in Holland, but made of wheat, which has endured eighteen months, and passed the Tropies; but till
gentlemen can tell certainly the way of making this
Brandy, desires that Brandy may not be prohibited.
Mr Jolliffe.] What will you do in dear years? In
dearth, neither the King's revenue, nor the Plantations,
can be supplied.
Sir John Duncombe.] In the trade of Guinea, all the
English strong waters perished. Brandy must be re-distilled to make it fit for the East Indies; how then can
our Aqua Vitæ carry?
Sir Thomas Lee.] Has heard say, that Brandy is made
of other ingredients than wine. As that made of wheat,
it is not said but that of barley may do as well for present use; the other for longer voyages.
[The question being put, That the importation of foreign
Brandy be wholly prohibited, it passed in the Negative, 91 to 83.]
Wednesday, March 2.
[The Bill of Conventicles was read the second time.]
Mr Waller.] This Bill looks more like a levying of
money than a punishing; if one be poor, another must
pay it. It may be of great scandal and hindrance to the
Church, to make it more penal than that of the Papists.
Here is a general distrust of the whole nation, in effect;
jealousy upon every officer, from the highest to the lowest. The people have a kindness for persecuted people,
ever since Henry VIII. and Queen Mary. These people
are like childrens tops; whip them, and they stand up,
let them alone, and they fall (fn. 1) . The Lords would not
trust tryal per pares with the Judges. In this Bill one
Justice of Peace weighs down all. This is a strange requital for the trust the people have put in us. Should
the people be to trust again, it is not likely it should be
us, they being not tryed by themselves as the Papists are.
The people naturally have a distrust of those that distrust
them. The people of Rome, in their best times, would
not be confined to chuse Patricians, but would chuse
Plebeians, if they pleased, for officers. When Clodius
saw it conduce to his ends to get the Tribuneship (of
which he was incapable, because a Patrician) he suffered
himself to be adopted. But against this adoption, two exceptions were found; one that he was adopted by a man
of a lower rank, a Plebeian, which was unnatural, and
by a younger man than himself, which took away the
reputation of a father. But the people never did chuse
any; no more he believes the people will ever quit any
of these men. When people are trusted, they chuse
well; when not, it is ever ill; therefore let these men
have the same tryal the Papists have.
Sir Thomas Meres.] The gentleman (Mr Waller) would
have the same penalty upon the Conventiclers as upon the
Papists, which is just none at all.
Sir John Birkenhead.] Anciently Juries never had any
thing to do with Conventicles; but the ecclesiastical
power is so enervated, that it can do nothing without the
secular power. Edward I. put out five Proclamations
against such Conventicles as are with us now.
Sir Charles Wheeler.] Persecution and punishment are
different; the Pagans and Heathens persecute Christians.
No man is compelled to come to Church. This Bill is
rather a toleration.
Mr Henry Coventry.] The rules of our Law are drawn
from the Civil Law, as the more ancient. A man in a
riot, and one killed, all are principals. In the Militia, men
are punished without jury; he could wish that Boscawen
had made the comparison to our own, and not the Usurper's Laws—Challenges any man to show what Government ever gave leave to all meetings. In effect, it is a
Government without Religion at all. More men leave
their houses because they are falling, than because they have
not a (fn. 2)
porté-cochére, which answers "the making things
wider." If these men pretend an appointment from God,
they may do the same in all things. In Spain, they are
content to live without a godly book, or exercise of Religion; and if they can live there under the Inquisition,
they may better live under our Laws, if they have any
conscience. There they can live for their gain.
Sir Richard Temple.] This promiscuous toleration is
more hurtful to the Church than a general one. The
French King has reduced his from a mountain to a molehill, by allowing them set and limited places for the exercise of Religion—He would not have this people
thought so great as this Bill makes them.
Colonel Birch.] Would have it considered whether it
be your interest, or not, to pass this Bill. A man that
has no preaching near him, will take it where he can.
You want only this Bill to make you more miserable than
you are, in wanting people. Is it reasonable to punish
men when they must go four or five miles for a sermon?
This driving it into corners, looks more like toleration,
than publickly allowing them Churches. The trading
part of England is as the soul to the body. To whip
them, and not to be able to tell them why you do so, is
unreasonable, they having no Churches in many places
to go to.
Sir Robert Howard.] He would have a party of people
taken in, and banish all the rest, if he can make these
people so considerable, that they are more than all the
rest in point of interest. No man can contend for this,
but he must make an ill prospect in Government. A general toleration is a spot in any Government. Queen
Elizabeth's greatest power was her indulgence; though
the Protestants broke faith with her at Newhaven, yet she
kept up all by indulgence. All do conclude that the King
of Spain's decay was the expulsion of the Moors by the
Inquisition, and the Duke of Alva in Flanders. The
French and Dutch Churches, here, are Conventicles by
the King's power; and is it not strange that the King
should have this power over strangers, and not on his
own subjects? We have made a good bargain for our
moneys, in getting our liberties unsought for by us [by
the King's causing the business of Skinner to be erazed]
to him, never to be forgotten—Therefore would have a
short Act to punish them that the King does not indulge,
according to his own wisdom. He thinks the King uses
every thing well, and would have him given this.
Sir Robert Atkins.] Moves for a Clause in the Act "for
the Magistrates to be under the same punishment in neglecting to put the Laws in execution against Papists." In
that the Act is desicient. It is redundant as to the Peers,
who have great Privileges already—Would have the same
Law for Commons and Peers, for Papists and Nonconformists.
Sir John Bramston, who drew up the Bill.] Justices of
Peace have the same power in many things as in this
Act; as Swearing, Drunkenness, Alehouses, and in repair of Highways; where, though the neglect of one
officer, all the Parish or Township is fined.
Sir Gilbert Talbot.] Produced a letter out of the country (Hampshire) relating the Insolence of one Fox, at a
[The Bill was ordered to be committed.]
Thursday, March 3.
[In a grand Committee on the Supply,
Resolved, That Vinegar be charged as French Wine, and
paid by the importer.]
Friday, March 4.
Complaint [was] made to the House, of notice given by Mr
Henry Slingsby [not a summons] to Mr Hale, Member for Hertfordshire, that a writ of Error is brought against him, by the said
Slingsby, into the House of Lords.
Sir Thomas Lee.] Moves that a conference be desired
with the Lords, the Summons taking notice of him to
be a Member.
Colonel Birch.] He has heard it yielded by the
whole House, that an appeal lies to the Lords from the
Courts of Westminster against any person; so then it includes Members of this House, we being in the same
condition with all his Majesty's subjects.
Sir Philip Warwick.] We not being Parliament-men
all our lives, as the Lords are, we cannot have Privilege
Mr Henry Coventry.] Supposes that in all Laws a man
may renunciare privilegium.—Would have the Member
asked the question—Would have us expect what the Lords
will do it, and not send them a Message for conference.
Sir William Lewis.] It is not in any man's power
to renounce his Privilege without leave. There is danger
in not taking notice of it; for if the Lords do proceed,
you are in a worse condition than you were before.
Sir Thomas Gower.] The judgment is to be to-morrow,
and then it will be matter of record against him, when
Sir Thomas Clarges.] Would have a conference with
the Lords, to demand justice against Slingsby.
Sir John Duncombe.] Believes that when we have done
our parts in sending, the Lords will do theirs, in doing
Sir William Lewis.] Would have the Message to this
effect; "to desire the Lords to have a care of our Privileges."
Sir Job Charlton.] We never send to any Court about
our own Privileges; it is a new way, never used.
Sir William Coventry.] The paper is not an order, it
not being signed by the Clerk. He has heard it said,
that Privilege cannot be taken away by any order or record—Would not have an unnecessary contest with the
Lords, and yet the Privilege of the House preserved—
If the Paper do take notice that he is a Member, and
the Lords will not recall their order, and so new heats
arise between us—(Answers Charlton) That in many cases
the Lords have more Privilege than we; but now that
Parliaments are long, we have in some cases more than
they. You may obtain your ends, without reading the
order, by sending up to the Lords, "that a Member of
yours being served with an order, their Lordships would
be pleased to take notice of it, and preserve our Privileges."
Sir Robert Atkins.] If a decree in Chancery be made
against a Lord, there is no danger, by an appeal to the
Lords, of taking away his Privilege, because he is present in the House of Lords, and so it is different from
our Privilege—Would have the Lords applied to by
way of Message. The Lords cannot be presumed to
take notice of our Member; several persons may be of
the same name. If your Member sues in Chancery, and
gets a decree, to the undoing of the Defendant, you may
justly dispense with your Member's Privilege, if an appeal
be against him to the Lords.
Sir John Talbot.] In 1641, in the case of Sir Robert
Pye, a Member had an extent above the value of the
person's land who appealed, and the appeal was granted,
and no Privilege insisted upon—Would have the Lords
records searched for precedents.
Mr Garroway.] This case is different from Sir Robert
Pyè's, for he was Plaintiff. Mr Hale is now Defendant.
Sir John Northcote.] Affirms that Sir Robert Pye did
wave his Privilege, and the House gave consent to it.
Resolved, That a Message be sent to the Lords, that a Member of ours being summoned to appear before them, we desire them to be tender of (fn. 3) our Privileges.
[The Answer of the Lords, reported next day, was, "That
they would have as due regard to the Privileges of the House
of Commons, as they had to their own."]
Saturday, March 5.
[Debate on the Petitions concerning Brandy.]
Alderman Bucknall, [Alderman Forth,] and Dr Williams, [were]
called in, to give an account, whether strong waters may be made,
as good as Brandy, of our own grain, and will carry and keep
beyond the line.
Dr Williams.] Knows that as durable and as wholesome may be made of our own grain, as that beyond
the sea. The ordinary distillations here are from ill materials, and then it is not so well rectified as Brandy, and
then it is adulterated besides with water, which makes it
neither abide in hot nor cold countries. It will consume
at least 200,000 quarters of corn.
Alderman Bucknall.] He has showed some of the
spirits made of our corn, and it has not been to be known
from Brandy; but the mixing it with water makes
it ropy. That which we carry to Guinea is two or
three times distilled. Wheat will make the best, but
barley and rye may do. It may be afforded for 3s. per
gallon very well, besides the duty—Has heard that there
is a tax in Barbadoes upon all Brandy, the better to consume their own manufacture made of sugar.
Alderman Forth.] He has practised the trade twenty two
or twenty three years, and makes as strong spirits as Brandy,
of our grain, mixed with water and sugar, to make it more
pleasant for women; but it is ropy upon voyages. In
three months time they can make to supply the world.
One quarter of malt will make 16 gallons of Brandy; one
quarter of wheat will make 24 gallons of Brandy, though
of the worst smutty wheat.
Sir John Talbot.] Moves that the Distillers may be in
all parts of England, that so the trade may be dispersed,
and not confined to the maritime parts only, and London.
Sir Richard Temple.] This home-made Brandy may be
afforded so cheap, that it will recompence the King's
Mr Garroway.] Though he serves for a corporation,
yet he will be tender of trade; would have the powers of
Companies contracted, that they may not impose apprentices and journeymen upon such as set up the trade.
Colonel Birch.] As much Brandy has come in during
the Debate as has come to 1000 l. duty (would have the
Committee take care of that) at four pence the gallon.
[A Bill was ordered to be brought in for regulating the making of Brandy.]
Monday, March 7.
[The Bill for regulating Juries, was read the second time.]
Sir Robert Atkins.] Some copyholders were infranchising—The Counsel advised them not to make themselves freeholds, but to take leases of 2000 years, without impeachment of waste, which would take them off
from Juries at Assize and Sessions, and from London
[The Bill was ordered to be committed.]
The Bill to enable the King to make leases of the Dutchy
lands in Cornwall [was read the first time.]
Mr Boscawen.] It is the interest both of the King and
that country, to have this let for lives, that it may be
improved, reserving the old rents—Desires that the Lords
of the Treasury may take care that the Lands be not
taken over their heads, and so both tenants and lands impoverithed, and the houses ruined.
[The Bill was ordered to be read a second time.]
Tuesday, March 8.
[Thanks were returned to the King, for ordering Conventicles
to be prosecuted, and that his Majesty would consider the danger
of them in and near London and Westminster, and would give
order to put the Laws in execution against Popish Recusants.]
Wednesday, March 9.
Mr Waller.] (Occasionally) Ambiguity of Laws makes
them arbitrary. In Venice they keep their Laws ambiguous, and by that means their Government is wholly
arbitrary—The Judges generally lay the corruption of
the Laws upon Attorneys and Sollicitors. The Clerks
of Assize buying their offices of the Judges, are connived at by them; which might be helped, by making
those offices saleable by the King, as in France, which
would augment the revenue, and prevent the connivance
of the Judges.
Sir John Birkenhead, on the Bill for making it Felony to
burn corn [and hay] stacks, and to [maim or] kill cattle.]
It is felony by the Civil Law to poison fountains, and to
[The Bill of Conventicles was read the second time.]
Mr Henry Coventry.] There is nothing in this Bill but
what is as arbitrary in the Irish cattle Bill. He undervalues
the Fanatics much, that thinks them not better worth than
an Irish cow. If there be not power in the Ecclesiastics,
it is fit it should be in the Law; therefore, never was
there a more merciful Bill, that punishes, neither with
blood nor banishment, a people that has punished us with
Serjeant Maynard.] More power by this Bill in one
Justice of Peace, than in all the Judges. In many things
the Justices are trusted much, but will you so trust them,
that they shall not be accountable? The party shut up for
ever, if the Justice will maliciously make a record, and
punish whom he will? It will be more disgrace to the
party, than the sum will damage him. Though the man
be ever so innocent, no remedy in the case. It was
said, the Law was so in many things, which possibly we
may have been too easy in; and to make this Law perpetual, it is without precedent.
Colonel Birch.] By this Bill, as you have formerly
sent trade into Ireland, you will now send your people
after it, unless the same Bill pass in Ireland also. Things
over zealously pressed, betwixt 1620 and 1640, were the
ground of all our troubles. This Bill will twist all the
Sectaries into one; 13 Eliz. reconciled us all. When
men are lost in the bushes, they endeavour to find the
way out. There is a piece of honour in the case upon
Sir Richard Temple.] You ought to make all your Acts
as cheap to be obeyed as disobeyed. You have taken
away all means from these people of getting their livings
by their professions, as Ministers or Schoolmasters, and
what they do is for bread. He had a Proviso in his
hand ready, that these Dissenters should not be prosecuted
in the ecclesiastical Courts, who, though they come not
to Church, and yet live peaceably at home, shall not be
prosecuted, without special order from the King.
Mr Vaughan.] Is against the Bill, because it crosses the
fundamental Laws of the nation.
Mr Love, tenders a Proviso, in substance this,] That
the Teachers, taking the oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy, and subscribing the 39 Articles, may, by the allowance of a Justice of Peace, teach, the doors being
open, and at the time of divine service.
Mr Henry Coventry says,] That this Proviso contradicts
the Bill, in taking away the penalty upon the Justice of
Peace for his default.
[The Bill passed 138 to 78, and was entitled, An Act to suppress seditious Conventicles (fn. 4) .]
Thursday, March 10.
[The House resumed the Debate of the Matter concerning the
union between England and Scotland.]
Sir Richard Temple.] Generally all Acts of Parliament
did leave Commissioners to put the Act in execution, to
the King's naming; and, before the Taxes, we find nothing of our naming. That is, of a new edition—Fears
that the difficulty will lie on the Scots parts; but that we
may not be behind-hand with the Scots, would agree with
[This was voted.]
Sir John Duncombe, on a Motion of Sir Humphry
Winch's, to give leave to Sir Robert Atkins to bring in a
Bill, to remit some things imposed since the King came in.]
As to comprehension, it is an incomprehensible thing, and
the Motion, by the Debate, grew from a cloud as big as
a hand to cover the whole hemisphere.
Sir Charles Harbord.] If he cannot save you, nor himself, he will save others; if he can, he will do good,
with as little hurt as he can.
Earl of Orrery.] You have this day passed a wise and
a kind vote, in agreeing with the Lords. This Bill is to
enlarge the Church upon good terms, else reject it.
Mr Henry Coventry.] Take heed that it be your Church
you increase; you may take enemies into your garrison.
To give leave to men to bring in a Bill against all Acts
of Parliament you have made, and disgrace your late
Bill with this; is a power was never yet given to a
Mr Garroway.] If we can get this in one day, say the
Nonconformists, what shall we do in a month? The
world will say, we are given to change, and hold to nothing. Though he was not fond of the Bill yesterday,
yet he now will remove his opinion since the Bill is passed,
and would not have Laws that we can never serve you in
the execution of.
[March 11. omitted.]
Saturday, March 12.
On the Bill for regulating Juries. [Some amendments were
Mr Sollicitor Finch.] Put the case that these Lessees (for
it was moved that they should be liable to be Jurors) give a
false verdict, you consent that you that are the reversioners,
shall have your houses pulled down, your meadows ploughed, your woods wasted, your copyhold destroyed, which
must be upon an attaint; consider then, how dangerous
it will be to bring Copyholders and Leaseholders within
this Bill. If they should be Jurors, it is reasonable
they should have voices in chusing Knights and Burgesses of Parliament; and what an intolerable charge
will that be, when the number shall be so multiplied?
Sir William Coventry.] This tends to an alteration of
Government; a thing dangerous in State to create so
many Freeholders, and such a Jury will always favour
their own tenures against their landlords. Besides, a gentleman, by his influence upon them, may put them upon
Sir Robert Atkins.] As the Law now stands, a 40s.
man may be a Juror; and consider the mischief of the
smallness of the number of 20 l. and 30 l. men; it will
light heavy upon them. There will be the same inconvenience against the one as the other. The Judges fine
and imprison, but none has been attainted this hundred
years, by reason the Jurors will not find an attaint upon
one another—Would have a provision made for a number, as well as for able men. Not one cause in Gloucestershire, but two-thirds were talesmen; sometimes eight
in twelve; therefore would have it 20 l.
Sir Thomas Lee.] Would have the writ of Privilege
taken away, viz. for those that are above sixty years old
—He knows some have taken it out at forty years old—
Would have that considered.
Sir Courtney Poole.] Would have the knavery of Bailiffs, who take money, or corn, from the Freeholders, to
excuse them, be taken into consideration; and especially
the Clerks of the Peace and Assize, to be punished, for
their connivance upon Returns.
Mr Crouch.] Would have the Committee take care
that juries be not fined for non-attendance, when they
are returned at both Courts. When he ought to have
marked the pannel "Aliter juratus," which he seldom does.
[The Bill was ordered to be re-committed.]
Monday, March 14.
On a proviso added to the Bill for encouraging Tillage, for
[a rate on] exportation of Coals.
Mr Henry Coventry.] No degrees in lawfull, any more
than there are in truth; things are all equally lawfull and
equally true. (Speaking occasionally to the Patent for the
excise on Coal.) The King's power, in legally letting such
a grant, is like a private gentleman's, in leasing his lands.
Sir George Downing.] Luke land (fn. 5) , and Scotch coal, will
serve the world.
Sir Richard Ford.] Knows not where coals are transported to any part of the world, but to the Plantations.
In Holland, Hamburgh, and France, they have more commodious fuel, and cheaper and wholsomer. In Holland,
coals are forbidden, unless to smiths, &c.
Mr Boscawen.] Coals are cheaper since the fire of London than before, by reason of the burning of brick. Increase the vent, and you will increase the shipping.
Sir Robert Howard.] If only Smiths, Distillers, and
Brewers use them, and not the generality (as Ford said)
they will consume sufficient to make us a trade, although
but Embden, Holland, and France.
Colonel Birch.] Nature has, as it were, surrounded
us with coals, if we had but the ingenuity of transportation. In many parts, it is three yards thick, as in
Lancashire and Wales. His majesty's revenue may have
compensation, if it suffer. Some say 50,000 tun is exported from Scotland; what an advantage would that be
Sir John Talbot.] A Peer being concerned in the Patent
(viz. Lord Townshend) would have him heard, as we
would be done by ourselves.
Sir William Coventry.] The increase of the Scottish importation. They having laid an impost of 80 per cent.
upon ribbons, and such wares of our commodities, so
that the Dutch and French bringing them these things,
rather than go back empty, will load with coals, so that
our trade will be wholly prevented—Would not have this
complicated with the Bill of exportation of cattle and
corn, for fear that good Bill should suffer by it; but
would have the two Bills take their fate together.
Mr Henry Coventry.] If the farmer of this Custom
cannot have his bargain made good, he may sue the
King in the Exchequer; it is but a sad remedy. You
cannot dispose of the King's revenue, and will you take
the farm away from a person of that quality and merit,
without hearing him? The French and Hollanders, rather than return empty, will give double rate for their
coals. Lord Townshend's duty is but four shillings per
chaldron; the half is granted to another person.
[The Proviso was rejected, 92 to 87.]
[March 15 omitted.]