The last Introduction dealt inter alia with the Accession of King George I, with the first provision for the Civil List, with the calling of a new Parliament, with further provision for the Civil List, with the impeachment and attainder of the Tory Leaders and with the failure of the 1715 Rising.
THE END OF THE RISING
Parliament had been adjourned but not prorogued and met again on 9 January 1715–16 when the King attended in the House of Lords; the Lord Chancellor read the King's Speech which commended the zeal and affection of his Government and the brave and faithful discharge of their duty by the Officers and Soldiers of the Army; nevertheless the King had reason to believe that the Pretender had landed in Scotland. Great Britain, in spite of these intestine commotions, had in some measure recovered her influence and reputation abroad. The Treaty for the New Barrier was now concluded between the Emperor and the States General under British guaranty and the King of Spain had agreed to a revised Commercial Treaty with Great Britain; a Treaty renewing the former Alliances with the States General was near conclusion. The Commons were asked for such Supplies as would enable the King to restore and to secure the Peace of the Kingdom; Estimates of the necessary Expenses would be laid before them. In order to ease the burden occasioned by the Rebellion the King promised freely to give up all estates forfeited to the Crown in consequence thereof.
After a speech by Nicholas (later Lord) Lechmere, the Commons resolved to impeach the Lords Derwentwater, Widdrington, Nithsdale, Wintoun, Carnwath, Kenmure and Nairne of High Treason; these had all surrendered at Preston. (See Vol. XXIX in this series, p. ix.) Articles of Impeachment were duly drawn up (‘Journals of the House of Commons’, Vol. XVIII, hereinafter referred to as C.J., pp. 332–334; Cobbett's ‘Parliamentary History of England’, Vol. VII, pp. 238–243; Howell's ‘State Trials’, Vol. XV, pp. 779–783) and were immediately carried up to the Lords; on January 10 the impeached Lords were brought to the Bar of the House to hear the Articles against them.
On January 19 the impeached Lords were again brought to the Bar and Lords Derwentwater, Widdrington and Nithsdale presented their Answers; Wintoun asked for Counsel and Solicitors; Carnwath and Kenmure pleaded guilty; Nairne also pleaded guilty and presented a petition (‘State Trials’, Vol. XV, pp. 783–791; C.J., p. 345 under January 20). Wintoun, having been allowed Counsel and a choice of one of the two Solicitors named by him, presented his Answer on January 24 (C.J., p. 348, under January 25).
On February 9 Sentence, as in case of High Treason, was pronounced against six of the seven, Wintoun still petitioning for time, by Lord Chancellor Cowper, acting as Lord High Steward (‘State Trials’, Vol. XV, pp., 796–801). Derwentwater, Nithsdale and Kenmure were to be executed without delay; Widdrington, Carnwath and Nairne were respited until March 9. On the eve of the day fixed for his execution, Nithsdale escaped in woman's garb but on February 24 the sentences on Lords Derwentwater and Kenmure were duly carried out. Nithsdale succeeded in reaching the Pretender's Court at Urbino and died in Rome 20 March 1743–4 (‘Complete Peerage’, Vol. IX (1936), p. 564). The Earl of Wintoun's trial had been delayed by his petitions for time until March 15; in spite of the suggestion that he was of unsound mind he was found guilty and judgment was pronounced on him on March 19. But in fact the remaining Lords were respited and, though attainted, whereby their honours became forfeited, they received the benefit of the General Pardon of December 1716. Wintoun had escaped from the Tower meanwhile.
Of the other leaders captured at Preston, Thomas Forster was sent to be tried in London but escaped from Newgate (‘Dictionary of National Biography’, Vol. XX, pp. 21, 22). Mackintosh likewise escaped as mentioned in the previous Volume of this series (Vol. XXIX, p. ix). (See C.J., pp. 449, 450, under 24 May 1716).
Of the prisoners captured at Sheriffmuir and elsewhere in Scotland some eighty were marched to Carlisle for their trials; nearly twenty of these were condemned to death but respited; the only execution was that of William Ainslie for his attempted betrayal of Edinburgh Castle (A. & H. Tayler, ‘1715, The Story of the Rising’, Thomas Nelson & Sons (1936), pp. 324–327 and pp. 56–58 for Ainslie's treachery).
Of those captured at Preston most were shipped off to the Plantations, whence only a few ever returned to Scotland (ibid, p. 87).
By Stat. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 32, John, Earl of Mar, William Murray commonly called Marquess of Tullibardine, James, Earl of Linlithgow, and James Drummond were attainted of High Treason; by Stat. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 42, ‘George, Earl of Marischall, William, Earl of Seaforth, James, Earl of Southesque, James, Earl of Panmuir’ and others were to stand attainted of High Treason should they not surrender on or before 30 June 1716; by Stat. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c., 53, Thomas Forster junior and William Mackintosh (Brigadier Mackintosh, having escaped from Newgate) were likewise attainted. The final Act of Pardon, Stat. 3 Geo. I, c. 19, excepted those who on May 1717 were employed in the Pretender's service and those who, having levied war against the King, were beyond seas or had returned from beyond seas without licence; also those who having any military commission had yet been guilty of levying war, of High Treason or of unlawful correspondence with the King's enemies. Stat. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 54, ‘for securing the Peace of the Highlands in Scotland’ placed severe restrictions on the keeping and bearing of arms and commuted for money certain services under pretence of which numbers of men could be ‘convocated together’. The Act likewise provided for schools to be set up.
THE FORFEITED ESTATES AND THE YORK BUILDINGS COMPANY
The Commissioners for the Forfeited Estates were established by Stat. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 50. This Act recited that the recent Rebellion had occasioned an excessive charge and expense to the King's Subjects and that it was highly reasonable that, according to his Majesty's ‘gracious condescention’, the Estates real and personal of the Rebels should be applied to the use of the Public. All such property, belonging to any person who since 24 June 1715 had been attainted or before 24 June 1718 should be attained of High Treason committed before 1 June 1716, was to be deemed vested in the King without Inquisition found. To the end that such property be better discovered etc. thirteen Commissioners were appointed. The lawful debts of peaceable subjects were secured to them.
By a further Act [Stat. 4 Geo. I, c. 8] it was provided that from and after 25 March 1718, as soon as conveniently might be, the Commissioners, or any four or more of them, were to sell to Protestants all and singular the Estates vested in the King for the use of the Public; at least fifteen days' notice was to be given; the sales, subject to a starting price to be settled in each case by the Commissioners, were to be by public auction. After satisfaction of all just claims etc. the nett monies arising from such sales were to be applied as follows: from the sale of the Estates in Scotland a sum not exceeding 20,000l. was to form a capital stock, the interest on which was to go towards erecting and maintaining schools in the
Highlands; the remainder, subject to certain savings, was to go to discharging the public debts of the Nation.
Of the Commissioners, seven were chosen to represent England, six (of whom four were Englishmen, including Sir Richard Steele) for Scotland. The English Commissioners were likewise directed to secure the forfeited Estates in Ireland, notably Ormonde's.
Pursuant to directions in the Act the Commissioners subdivided themselves; those appointed in relation to England, after having resided for some time at London, removed to Preston, co. Lancaster, and thence to Newcastle, co. Northumberland. In their first Report to Parliament they found that the Estates which came within their province might be worth about 35,000l. per annum, but some 840 claims had to be considered; goods and chattels were found largely to have been sold before the conviction of the forfeiting persons, but the Commissioners estimated that the remainder with debts due might amount to 24,562l. (Forfeited Estate Commissioners, Books, No. 5: F.E.C. 2/5, pp. 16 et seqq.) In their second Report they mentioned their difficulties in collecting rents; since the Act of Indemnity several of the forfeiting persons had re-entered upon their estates; it was important to make contracts for working of mines and salt pits (ibidem pp. 28 et seqq.). In their third Report of 31 January 1719–20 the Commissioners stated that they had heard the greatest part of the claims; those unheard were dependent on the success of certain Appeals pending; they had the greatest difficulty in securing rents of leases where the real estate had been settled to superstitious uses; they needed new powers to obtain discovery and to compel the tenants to pay (ibidem pp. 111 et seqq.). A fourth Report, presented 24 February 1720–21 (C.J., XIX, p. 458), stated that the Commissioners had sold several Estates; there were several others ready for sale but the difficulties of raising money had for some months rendered such sales impracticable for the time being. The yearly value of the estates sold was put at 5,158l. 12s. 2d.; the upset or starting prices totalled 93,251l. and the prices realized 131,867l. The purchasers were Robert Stoddart, John Wicker, Christian Cole, Joseph Studley, Croft Corless, John Laundes, Thomas Winkley, George Wilson and William Dale. (For Wicker and Cole see below.) (F.E.C., 2/5 pp. 125 et seqq.)
By 19 July 1721 the last of 1,718 claims had been heard and determined: the sum of 4,730l. 18s. 6d. had been allowed for losses suffered in the Rebellion; several more estates had been sold, but others remained outstanding, including some estates of James, late Earl of Derwentwater, lately discovered, of the annual value of 1,498l. (ibidem unpaged, the last item in this document).
In Scotland, the Commissioners were faced with far greater difficulties; before they could even value the properties, numerous creditors lodged claims in the Court of Session and the Barons of the Exchequer claimed the right to administer the Estates. Many of the farm-rents were paid in kind and to Englishmen the terms of the leases were often unintelligible; where Scottish surveyors were appointed to value the land, they were by no means trustworthy.
After four years, however, the Commissioners found their valuations completed. The next problem was to find purchasers. The circulating capital of Scotland was limited and much had been sunk in the Darien Company; it seemed likely that relatives of the attainted persons might buy back the estates much under their value. To the English investor Scotland was remote and disturbed and local feeling was strong against the forfeitures and the methods of the Commissioners; the only possible purchaser from outside Scotland was some organization with strong capital resources both for the purchase and for the subsequent development of the properties.
It was at this juncture that the York Buildings Company, controlled by Case Billingsley, a Solicitor and Company-promoter, came into the picture.
On 6 May 1665 a patent had been granted to Wayne and Williamson enabling them to convey water to the inhabitants of Piccadilly and its neighbourhood, both from springs and from the Thames. The patentees are next heard of in 1672 when York House on the south side of the Strand was sold and York Buildings were erected on the site. Ralph Wayne and Ralph Bucknall obtained a site in these buildings and erected a pumping station with a high wooden tower at the foot of Buckingham Street. By a patent of 7 May 1675 powers similar to those of the previous grant were conferred; the work was taken in hand; water from the Thames was admitted into canals, pumped up into cisterns on high ground and conveyed by elm-wood pipes to consumers' houses. In 1691, on an increase in the nominal capital to 4,800l., a private Act was passed, incorporating the Company as “the Governor and Company of Undertakers for raising the Thames Water in York Buildings”; with an unrestricted right to purchase lands and hereditaments. Competition with other water companies, however, became acute and in March 1719 the waterworks were advertized for sale. The Company was purchased by Case Billingsley for about 7,000l. (probably 7,125l.), including 1,845l. to discharge debts already incurred, so the shareholders received a net sum of 5,155l. or rather more.
Billingsley had ambitious schemes for the Company whose statutory privileges he had purchased. He planned ‘to raise a joint stock and fund of 1,200,000l. for purchasing forfeited and other estates in Great Britain, by a fund for granting annuities over lives and for assuring lives’; in other words he was entering into the business of life assurance on a scale hitherto unprecedented, the landed estates of the Company, mostly in Scotland and Northumberland, being security for the payment of claims.
The whole amount offered was immediately subscribed and later an additional 59,575l. was taken up; the nominal capital at the beginning of 1720 was therefore 1,259,575l. on which 10l. per cent. was paid up. From this 10l. per cent. and from borrowed monies payment was made of 308,913l. 14s. 5d. for various estates, yielding a nett rental of 15,378l. 7s. 37/12d.; the principal agents to purchase the estates were Christian Cole, Robert Hacket, John Strachey and John Wicker. The Earl of Wintoun's Estate was bought for 50,300l.; the Kilsyth estates for 16,000l.; East Reston for 2,364l. 13s. 9d.; the Panmure estates for 60,400l. In October 1720 five more estates were purchased; Marischal 41,172l. 6s. 9d.; Southesk 51,549l. 7s. 4d.; Linlithgow 18,751l. 15s. 0d.; Fingask 9,606l. 6s. 4d.; Pitcairn 849l. 5s. 3d. Rob Roy's estate was also bought for 820l. In England the Widdrington estates in Northumberland were bought by Christian Cole for 57,100l. A smaller estate in Cheshire (Dalton's) was purchased by John Wicker for 650l. but this may not have been for the Company, or at least cannot have been taken up.
The Company found difficulty from the first in finding cash for payment within the strict limits of time allowed by the Commissioners; a further legal difficulty arose in 1720 when the Attorney General considered that the Company's powers to purchase lands, though not expressly limited to any particular annual value, should nevertheless be related to the purpose for which the Corporation was erected; a writ of scire facias was issued but the order was recalled and no proceedings were taken on this Opinion.
Early in August 1720 the Company's shares of 100l. nominal, 10l. paid up, rose to the neighbourhood of 300l. but, on the issue of the writ of scire facias and a call of 23l. per cent. on the stockholders, values fell rapidly until the shares became practically unsaleable. In 1721 to meet its obligations the Company had recourse to Lottery Schemes, offering prizes of its own stock, but these proved a failure. Attempts to develop the properties likewise proved unsuccessful. After much financial jugglery, bankruptcy proceedings began in 1740; the sale of the Widdrington estate in Northumberland reduced the claims admitted of 115,320l. 11s. 8d. to 40,042l. 13s. 10d.; but other debts were outstanding and there were dilatory proceedings in the Scottish Courts. After further litigation and arrangements with creditors the York Buildings Company was finally dissolved by Act of Parliament in 1829. The curious circumstance is that, had the undertaking been prudently financed, the venture would have yielded a handsome profit. As stated above, the total amount of the purchases was 308,913l. 14s. 5d. but this was subject to certain deductions, leaving a nett price of 264,191l. 13s. 102/3d.; in times of settled government and of agricultural improvements the same properties were sold for 479,951l. 6s. 01/12d., a capital gain of 215,759l. 12s. 15/12d.
The Commissioners themselves continued until 1725; the sum realized from the sale of the Forfeited Estates in Scotland and paid into the Exchequer was 411,082l.; after claims had been paid, the balance was reduced to 84,043l. and the expenses of the Commissioners came to 82,936l.; thus from the produce of fifty forfeitures the Exchequer received 1,107l. only. (fn. 1)
The above information with regard to the Scottish forfeitures has been gathered from ‘The York Buildings Company, a Chapter in Scotch History’ by David Murray (Glasgow, James Maclehose & Sons, 1883); from ‘Joint Stock Companies to 1820’ by W. R. Scott (Cambridge University Press, 1911) Vol. III pp. 418–434; and from ‘Scottish Forfeited Estate Papers’, (Scottish History Society, 1909), by A. H. Millar, pp. xiv–xxxviii.
Among the documents available in the Public Record Office are the Records of the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates relating to England and three Declared Accounts of minor importance (A.O. 1/362/20, 21, 23). The Scottish Records relating to these Forfeited Estates are to be found in H.M. General Register House, Edinburgh; so far as general management is concerned, they consist of 23 volumes and 12 portfolios of loose papers, including drafts and printed and manu script Reports of the Commissioners; the volumes are listed in Livingstone's ‘Guide to the Public Records of Scotland’ at pp. 62, 63; the loose papers, however, are only roughly described therein at p. 66; there are also six volumes relating to particular estates and a large number of folios of loose papers; these are combined with like documents relating to estates forfeited after the Rising of 1745 in an alphabetical arrangement given in the Guide beforementioned at pp. 67–72. The letter-books of Christian Cole used by Millar are still with the Scottish History Society.
THE SEPTENNIAL ACT
The Tories still cherished hopes of success at the next Election but on 10 April 1716 the Duke of Devonshire represented in the House of Lords the inconveniences that attended the system of Triennial Elections and stated that he had a Bill to offer to the House for enlarging the continuance of Parliaments. After some opposition the Bill was read; on April 14 it was read a second time and on the motion for its commitment a debate arose (‘Parliamentary History’, Vol. VII, pp. 292–307); the motion for its commitment was carried 96 to 61; on April 16, after a division 74 to 39, the Bill was ordered to be reported; its engrossment was ordered without a division the next day; it was read a third time and, in spite of a long speech in opposition by the Earl of Nottingham, was finally passed by 69 to 36; 24 Lords protested against it. It was brought down to the Commons on April 19; it was read a First Time and after debate was ordered to be read a Second Time by 276 to 165. In spite of several Petitions against the Bill the motion for its commitment on April 24 was carried by 284 to 162 and on April 26 the Commons, by 264 to 121, passed it without amendment. (C.J. XVIII, pp. 425, 429–432.) The Bill received the Royal Assent on May 7 as Stat. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 38, ‘An Act for Enlarging the Time of Continuance of Parliaments …’ It recited the Act 6 [& 7] W. and M. [c. 2] ‘for the frequent Meeting and Calling of Parliaments’, and stated that the provision therein for Triennial Elections had been found by experience very grievous and ‘burthensom’ by increasing expenses and fomenting animosities and that at the present juncture it might be destructive to the peace and security of the Government; therefore this present Parliament and all Parliaments thereafter should and might have continuance for seven years unless this present or any such Parliament thereafter were sooner dissolved by the Sovereign.
THE REVENUES AND THE NATIONAL DEBT
At this date, prior to Walpole's funding operations, it may be well to consider the complications of the financial structure which had accrued during Queen Anne's reign as they affected the several sources of Revenue. Details of the rates of interest payable on the several items forming the National Debt and the various conditions governing their redemption can be left until the next Volume.
The summary of Revenue 1701–2 given in the ‘Calendar of Treasury Books; Introduction to Vols. XI–XVII’ (pp. cccciv–ccccxii) shows: Remains 455,134l. 2s. 4d.; Cash surcharged 1,096l. 12s. 8¾d.; Customs 1,416,644l. 5s. 5¼d.; Excise and Salt 1,390,717l. 14s. 3¼d; Post Office 79,150l. 15s. 3d.; Casual Revenues 67,428l. 19s. 10d.; Taxes, Aids and Supplies 1,907,272l. 9s. 8¼d.; Unclassified items 12,483l. 11s. 2d.; Loan account 214,748l. 13s. 10¾d.; total 5,544,677l. 4s. 7¼d. The figures for 1707–1708, when the War was at its height, show: Remains 906,777l. 13s. 8d.; Customs 1,190,882l. 13s. 8¼d.; Excise 1,679,607l. 15s. 3¾d.; Post Office 56,951l. 0s. 5d.; Casual Revenues 199,533l. 2s. 4d.; Aids and Taxes 2,080,036l. 10s. 4¼d.; Unclassified Items 2,497,835l. 15s. 0d.; Balance of Loan Money 187,136l. 18s. 5d.; total 8,798,761l. 9s. 2¼d. (‘Calendar of Treasury Books’, Vol. XXII, p. ccxii.) The Miscellaneous Revenues or Unclassified Items in this year are largely contributions for Annuities; see below. The corresponding figures for 1715–16 in this Volume (p. ci) are as follows: Remains 2,470,301l. 7s. 8¾d.; Customs 1,480,810l. 4s. 10½d.; Excise (including 12,287l. 14s. 2d. on the part of Scotland) 2,348,416l. 2s. 11d.; Post Office 89,313l. 2s. 10d.; Casual Revenues, 141,616l. 12s. 8½d.; Aids and Taxes 1,500,604l. 19s. 5¼d.; Scottish Civil List Revenues 24,438l. 2s. 4d.; Loan account 545,452l. 7s. 0d.; total 8,600,952l. 19s. 10d.
The changes, however, can better be estimated by a study of the details; a series of Funds or Fonds had been created and the additional taxation imposed during the late Queen's reign had all been earmarked for specific purposes; certain Revenues were available for the Civil Government; others for meeting deficiencies; others were for payment of Interest and Principal on the several Lotteries; the Land Tax and the Malt Tax, together with certain derogations from Civil List Revenues, were available for meeting the Service Estimates, other Parliamentary Votes in Supplies and Statutory expenses.
Much of the history of this growing elaboration can be gathered from the list of Acts given in Vol. XXVIII of this series (pp. xxii–xxxvi).
The first Act for meeting Deficiencies (the First General Mortgage) was in the time of King William (Stat. 8 & 9 Wm. III, c. 20) but this was followed by five others in Queen Anne's reign, Stats. 1 Anne, c. 7; 6 Anne, c. 27; 6 Anne, c. 73; 7 Anne, c. 31; 8 Anne, c. 21 and finally by the South Sea Company Act, 9 Anne, c. 15, which inter alia funded 85,000l. due for interest.
The first mentioned Act recited that by reason of the Deficiencies in the various Aids and the remoteness of the course of payment of Tallies, the owners of such Tallies were frequently obliged to sell them at a loss; the Deficiencies were then estimated at 5,160,459l. 14s. 9¼d.; towards meeting these the Subsidy of Tonnage and Poundage granted by Stat. 12 Car. II, c. 4 (as continued by Stat. 6 & 7 Wm. III, c. 1), was further continued to 1 August 1706, as also were the Duties on Wines and Vinegar of Stat. 1 Jac. II, c. 3, the Duties on Tobacco of 1 Jac. II, c. 4, the Additional Duties on East India and other Goods and Merchandizes of Stat. 2 W. & M., st. 2, c. 4 (as continued by Stat. 7 & 8 Wm. III, c. 10), the Additional Impositions of Stat. 4 W. & M. c. 5, certain [Stamp] Duties on Vellum, Parchment and Paper of Stat. 5 & 6 W. & M., c. 21, the Duties on Marriages, etc. of Stat. 6 & 7 Wm. III, c. 6 and the Duty on Houses [for Windows] of Stat. 7 & 8 Wm. III, c. 18. The Capital Stock of the Bank of England was to be made up to 1,200,000l.; four-fifths of the new capital, which came to be known as ‘the Engrafted Stock’, might be subscribed in Tallies and one fifth in Bank Bills or Bank Notes. A General Fund was to be created out of the said continued Duties to satisfy the Interest on Loans at 8l. per cent. per annum; any overplus thereon would be applied to repay the Principal. The Second General Mortgage was that of Stat. 1 Anne, c. 7 (1702), to meet a Deficiency of 2,338,628l. 15s. 5¾d., to which end the above Duties, other than the Duty on Marriages, etc. (which was allowed to lapse), together with the Duty on Whale Fins of Stat. 9 Wm. III, c. 45, were continued to 1 August 1710. The overplus monies of other Duties, including the Salt Duties, were also to be applied. The Act contained a clause of Loan for 2,600,000l. at 8l. per cent. per annum. By the Third General Mortgage of Stat. 6 Anne, c. 27 (1706) the above Duties, other than the Stamp Duties (continued for 96 years by Stat. 6 Anne, c. 2) and the Duty on Houses (made perpetual by Stat. 6 Anne, c. 21 for the service of Exchequer Bills) were further continued, with slight modifications, to 1 August 1712. The Clause of Loan was for 822,381l. 15s. 6¼d. at 6l. per cent. per annum but in this and the three subsequent Acts, as observed in the Introduction to Vol. XXV of this Calendar, p. xxxv, no attempt was made to compile a specific list of Deficiencies. The Fourth General Mortgage of Stat. 6 Anne, c. 73 (1707) continued one moiety of the Subsidy (the other moiety having been caught by Stat. 6 Anne, c. 48 for payment of Annuities) together with the other Duties and a Duty of 25l. a tun on French Prize Wines and Seizures, to 1 August 1714. The Clause of Loan was for 729,067l. 15s. 6¾d., likewise at 6l. per cent. per annum.
The Half Subsidy remaining under this Statute was made perpetual by Stat. 7 Anne, c. 30 but the Fifth General Mortgage of Stat. 7 Anne, c. 31 (1708) continued to 1 August 1716 the Duties on Wines and Vinegar, the Tobacco Duties, the Duties on East India Goods, the Additional Impositions and the Duties on Whale Fins to provide a fund for a loan of 645,000l. at the same rate of interest.
The Sixth General Mortgage of Stat. 8 Anne, c. 14 (1709) continued the same Duties to 1 August 1720 to provide a fund for a Loan of 1,296,522l. 9s. 11¾d., with interest as before. Any surplus of the Duties on Rock Salt under Stat. 7 & 8 Wm. III, c. 31 might also be applied.
The general effect and nature of these Deficiency Acts and of the South Sea Company's Act, Stat. 9 Anne, c. 15, are discussed in the late Dr. Shaw's Introduction above mentioned (Vol. XXV, pp. xxxiv–liii) and W. R. Scott's Joint Stock Companies to 1720, Vol. III, pp. 288 et seqq. By this last mentioned Act the Additional Impositions and other Duties of the Sixth General Mortgage Act were made perpetual, and these, with the reversion of other Duties, were to provide a fund of 568,279l. 10s. to meet the interest on 9,471,325l. of Government indebtedness, any deficiency to be made good by the Navy Treasurer out of tallies, etc.
Besides the Acts for meeting Deficiencies, there were the several Acts for Annuities and Lotteries.
1 Anne, st. 2, c. 5; to raise 79,155l. for the War, by Annuities for 89 years; out of Excise Duties.
2 & 3 Anne, c. 3; to raise up to 1,200,000l. for the War by Annuities for One Life, Two Lives or 99 years; out of the 3,700l. a week Excise.
3 & 4 Anne, c. 2; to raise 877,930l. 19s. 3½d. for the War by Annuities for 99 years; and a further 187,930l. 19s. 3½d. by conversion of One Life Annuities to estates of 99 years; out of surplus 3,700l. a week Excise.
4 & 5 Anne, c. 18; to raise 2,575,761l. 16s. 2d. for Supply, 1706; 2,855,761l. 16s. 2d. whereof 280,000l. for quarterly payments, to be raised by 99 year Annuities; out of the One-third Subsidy (under 2 & 3 Anne c. 18), Coal Duties etc., Beer Duties etc.
6 Anne, c. 2; to raise 1,120,000l. for Supply, 1707, and 35,000l. for quarterly payments by Annuities for 99 years; out of Low Wines, Hawkers, Stamp Duties, Sweets and Additional Tonnage and Poundage.
6 Anne, c. 39; to raise 640,000l. for Supply, 1708; out of overpluses of the One-third Subsidy and other Duties.
6 Anne, c. 48; to raise 1,280,000l. by Sale of Annuities; whereof 1,020,000l. for the War, 1708, and 260,000l. for payment of Annuities; out of the Half-Subsidy.
8 Anne, c. 12; 900,000l. by 32 year Annuities or a Lottery for Supply, 1710; out of New Duties of Excise and Grocery Duties.
8 Anne, c. 10; 1,500,000l. Lottery for 1710; out of Duties on Coal etc., and New Duties on Houses for Windows. Yearly fund 135,000l.
9 Anne, c. 6; 1,500,000l. Lottery for 1711; out of Duties on Exports and on Coals and Candles. Yearly Fund 135,000l.
9 Anne, c. 16; 2,000,000l. Lottery for carrying on the War; out of Hackney Coaches, etc., new Stamp Duties, Duties on Cards and Dice, Rock Salt exported to Ireland, 700l. a week from the Post Office, Duties on Hides and Skins. Yearly Fund 186,670l.
10 Anne, c. 18; 1,800,000l. Lottery towards Supply 1712; out of Soap and Paper, Silks etc., printed, painted or dyed, Stamp Duties ‘on several kinds’, additional Hackney Chairs, stocks of Cards and Dice. Yearly Fund 168,003l.
10 Anne, c. 19; 1,800,000l. ‘Classis’ Lottery towards ditto; out of Hides and Skins, Vellum and Parchment, Starch, Coffee, Tea, Drugs imported, Gilt and Silver Wire and Policies of Insurance. Yearly Fund, 168,003l.
12 Anne, c. 11; 500,000l. Lottery for the Civil List; 35,000l. a year for 32 years to be chargeable to Civil List Revenues.
13 Anne, c. 18; 1,400,000l. Lottery for Supply 1714; out of additional Soap and Paper Duties, Linens, etc., Starch and exported Coals and additional Stamp Duties. This Act was amended by 1 George I, c. 2 and the Yearly Fund raised from 105,000l. to 116,573l.
In addition to the above there were allowances payable to the Bank of England under the Acts for the Bank and for circulating, etc. Exchequer Bills, e.g. 6 Anne, c. 21; 7 Anne, c. 30 and 31; 9 Anne, c. 7; 12 Anne, c. 11; to the East India Company under Stats. 6 Anne, c. 71; 10 Anne, c. 35 and Acts of the preceding reign; and to the South Sea Company. (See also C.J., pp. 498–507.)
The effect of this legislation can be seen in the Declared Accounts: e.g. to the Customs and the several New Duties shown in the Accounts for 1702 are added the One-third subsidy, the Two-thirds Subsidy, the Additional Duty on Coffee, etc., the Duty on Whale Fins, the Duty on Groceries, the New and Additional Duties on Candles, the Subsidy Outwards, the New Duties on Hides, on Hops and on Rock Salt exported to Ireland, the Additional Duty on Hides, the New and Additional Duties on Soap, the Duty on Sail-cloth and the Duty on Coals exported. In both 1702 and 1714 there are separate Accounts for Wines and Vinegar, for Tobacco and Sugar and for Silks and Linens; but the Accounts in Vol. XXIX of the ‘Calendars of Treasury Books’ include also a Greneral Account of the Coal Duties 1713 to 1718.
The principal Accounts of the Excise Duties include an additional 3d. on Beer etc. from 26 March 1700 but otherwise are comparatively little altered; but to the separate Accounts for Wine Licences and for Salt there are added in 1714 those for Malt; for Hops; for Candles; for Hides; for Gilt and Silver Wire and Starch; and for Soap. In 1702 the Stamp Duties included the Continued and Additional Duties but by 1714 to these had been added the New Duties on Stamped Vellum and on Cards and Dice; the Duties on several kinds of Stamped Vellum and on Printed papers etc.; and the New Duty on Policies of Insurance; together with the rates upon monies given with Clerks and Apprentices.
Direct or quasi-direct Taxes are still comparatively simple; the Land Tax was reduced from 4s. to 2s. at the end of the war (to be raised again in the next reign to 4s. in 1716 to pay for the 1715 Rising and thereafter retained at 3s. until 1722). The Tax or Duty on Houses for Windows, first imposed in 1698, was amended to provide a Lottery Fund in 1709 by the imposition of additional Duties (applicable also to Scotland) on Houses with 20 windows or more (Stat. 8 Anne, c. 10). This ‘Window Tax’ or ‘Duty on Houses’ was administered in conjunction with the Land Tax. Owing to a technicality of Exchequer procedure neither of these Taxes is included in the ordinary Declared Accounts but together they form a separate Class (Public Record Office reference E. 360).
Besides these were the Taxes on Hawkers and Pedlars and on Hackney Carriages and Chairs. The former dated from 1697 and were continued and appropriated by Stats. 3 and 4 Anne, c. 18; 6 Anne, c. 2 and 6 Anne, c. 39. The latter applied to London, Westminster and the suburbs only and dated from 1694; amendments were made by Stats. 9 Anne, c. 16 (for the 2,000,000l. Lottery 1711) 10 Anne, c. 18 (for the first 1,800,000l. Lottery, 1712) and 12 Anne, c. 15 (giving preference to coachmen's widows).
The details above will give some idea of the position at the end of Queen Anne's reign. A list of the Principal Taxes in force in England at the end of the Reigns of William III and of Anne respectively will be found in Stephen Dowell ‘History of Taxation’ (London, Longmans Green & Co. 1884), Vol. II, pp. 65–66 and 83–84.
King George's Civil List and the Aggregate Fund
The first Act of King George's reign (1 Geo. I, c. 1) merely conferred on the King for life all the Civil List Revenues granted to Queen Anne, including the Excise on Beer granted by Stat. 12 Car. II, c. 23 and continued by Stat. 2 W. and M., c. 3, the Duty on Vinegar under Stat. 10 Wm. III, c. 10, the further Subsidy of Tonnage and Poundage of Stat. 9 Wm. III, c. 23, and the Revenue of the Post Office and Small Branches; subject to the 3,700l. a week out of the Excise, the 700l. a week out of the Post Office and the 35,000l. per annum out of the Excise for the Civil List Lottery; further exceptions were made of the 4½ per cent. Duty from the West Indies, of the revenues of the Duchy of Cornwall (now vested in the Prince) and of the First Fruits and Tenths of the Clergy. But the new Parliament passed two important Acts, Stats. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 12 and c. 21, together with another Act for Perpetual Annuities (c. 19). The former, after reciting the Acts 7 Anne, c. 30; 8 Anne, c. 1; 9 Anne, c. 7 and 12 Anne, c. 11 for enlarging the Capital Stock of the Bank of England and for issuing Exchequer Bills and for better enabling the Bank to exchange the same on demand for ready money, created a General or Aggregate Fund to raise a yearly sum of 120,000l. for the King's Civil List and the interest on a sum of 910,000l. to be raised for the Public Service.
The following Duties etc. were appropriated for this Fund:
the Two-thirds Subsidy; the Duties on Coffee etc.; and the One-half Subsidy; all as provided by Stat. 7 Anne, c. 30;
the Duties on Wines and Merchandise under Stat. 6 Anne, c. 27; the Additional Duties on French Goods of Stat. 7 and 8 Wm. III, c. 20; the Plantation Duties of Stat. 25 Car. II, c. 7; the Duty on Hops of Stat. 9 Anne, c. 13 continued for ever;
together with the surplus of the following Duties:
the Duties on Coal etc. of Stat. 4 & 5 Anne, c. 18 (for Annuities 1706); the Duties on Low Wines, the Duties payable by Hawkers etc., part of the Stamp Duties, the Duty on Sweets and the One-third Subsidy of Stat. 6 Anne, c. 2 (for Annuities, 1707, under that Act); the overplus of the above and of the Excise Duties of Stat. 4 W. & M., c. 3 (for Annuities, 1708, under Stat. 6 Anne, c. 39);
and together with the whole of the said Duties continued for ever after expiry of the terms of the several Funds created by the Acts above-mentioned.
Subject to a saving for deficiencies under Stat. 1 Geo. I, c. 2 amending Stat. 13 Anne, c. 18, the above were to form an Aggregate Fund to be paid according to the following preferences:
(1) the allowance of 3l. per cent. per annum to the Bank for circulating Exchequer Bills;
(2) the Bank's allowances of 45,000l. and 8,000l. per annum;
(3) to provide 120,000l. per annum for the Civil List;
(4) to provide 54,600l. per annum to answer the Perpetual Annuities of 910,000l. to be raised at 6l. per cent.;
(5) thereafter the balance to be available for the cancellation of Exchequer Bills.
Any overplus was to be disposable or any deficiency to be made good by Parliament. Any overplus for the Civil List under 1 Geo. I, c. 1 (supra) above 700,000l. per annum would go to the Fund.
This Act, while establishing a single fund for the Bank, the balance of the Civil List and the Perpetual Annuities, did not in any way affect the position of the existing Annuitants or holders of Lottery Orders: the several funds were continued and were still a first charge on the several Duties by which they were respectively secured.
In fact, in lieu of the 910,000l. in Perpetual Annuities at 6l. per cent. per annum the Acts 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 19 and c. 21 invited subscriptions at 5l. per cent., the former for 910,000l., requiring a yearly fund of 45,500l., the latter for a further 169,000l. requiring 8,450l. yearly, the total yearly requirement being therefore 53,950l. in lieu of 54,600l.
Enlargement of the South Sea Company's Capital
Besides authorizing the further issue of Perpetual Annuities as above, the Act for enlarging the Capital Stock of the South Sea Company, 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 21, provided that to the Company's existing Capital Stock of 9,177,967l. 15s. 4d. there should be added 822,032l. 4s. 8d. to make a total of 10,000,000l., whereupon the Company's yearly fund, now 550,678l. 1s. 4d. with 8,000l. for management, would be increased by 49,321l. 18s. 8d. to 60,000l., with 8,000l. per annum for management as before. Thus the 6l. per cent. basis was retained subject to the right of redemption.
All the Duties etc. of Stats. 9 Anne, c. 15 and 10 Anne, c. 37 were to be appropriated to the increased Fund, viz. the Duties etc. of Stats. 8 Anne, c. 14 (the Sixth General Mortgage) i.e. the Impositions on Wines and Vinegar of Stat. 1 Jas. II, c. 5; the Impositions on Tobacco of Stat. 1 Jas. II, c. 4; the Duties on East India goods of Stat. 2 W. & M., st. 2, c. 4; the Additional Impositions of Stat. 4 W. & M., c. 5; the Duties on Whale Fins of Stat. 9 Wm. III, c. 45; together with the surplus of the Salt Duties of Stat. 7 & 8 Wm. III, c. 31; likewise the Salt Duties of Stat. 1 Anne, c. 7 (the Second General Mortgage); and the Duties on Candles and the rates on money given with Clerks and Apprentices under Stat. 8 Anne, c. 5, continued by Stat. 9 Anne, c. 15. Any deficiency was to be made good by the Treasurer of the Navy.
Summary: the General Position of the National Debt at this time
By the above measures the first steps had been taken towards the eventual consolidation of the National Debt between the two rival Corporations, the Bank of England and the South Sea Company. In addition the East India Company under Stat. 6 Anne, c. 71 had provided a loan, in return for valuable trading privileges, at 5l. per cent. only, of 1,200,000l. (For the early history of the Bank of England see W. R. Scott ‘Joint Stock Companies to 1720’ Vol. III, pp. 199 et seqq. and for that of the South Sea Company ibidem pp. 288 et seqq.)
In sum, Government indebtedness consisted of the following main classes:
(1) Exchequer Bills, bearing interest at 2d. per diem convertible at the Bank of England for ready money. The rate of interest under Stat. 8 and 9 Wm. III, c. 20 s. 64 had been as high as 5d. per diem; under Stat. 12 and 13 Wm. III, c. 1, s. 2 this was reduced to 4d. per diem; under Stat. 6 Anne, c. 21 the Treasury was to issue Bills for 1,500,000l. for circulating which the Bank was to be allowed 4l. 10s. per cent. per annum; under Stat. 7 Anne, c. 30, for discharging such Bills, after Michaelmas 1710, the Bank was to receive a yearly Annuity of 106,501l. 13s. 5d. from the Duty on Houses; the Bank was to deliver up all the existing Exchequer Bills in its hands on 31 March 1709 to be cancelled and to discharge the rest ‘as fast as they could be gotten in’; after 24 June 1709 the Treasury might give notice that such Bills should no longer be current; new Bills were to be issued out not exceeding 2,500,000l. to bear interest at 2d. per cent. per diem, for circulating which the Bank's allowance was to be 3l. per cent. per annum. By Stat. 7 Anne, c. 31 the Bank was to circulate further Exchequer Bills for 612,739l. at 2d. per diem. By Stat. 9 Anne, c. 7 the Bank was to receive 45,000l. per annum without interest to exchange non-specie Bills for money on demand; by the same Act it was provided that up to 50 Exchequer Bills of 5,000l. each might be issued and existing Bills could be changed for new Bills of 6l. 5s. each. By Stat. 12 Anne, c. 11 the Treasury was empowered to issue a further 1,200,000l. in Exchequer Bills at 2d. per cent. per diem, for circulating which the Bank was to receive 3l. per cent. per annum.
(2) Short term loans, generally at 5l. or 6l. per cent., especially on the two Taxes annually voted, the Land Tax and the Malt Tax. Most of these might be paid off in six months or a year's time. (Scott op. cit. gives a facsimile of Freke's ‘Prices of Stock’ for 15 November 1715; this shows the Fifteenth 4s. Aid, the Third 2s. Aid and the Fourth 2s. Aid all substantially paid off but of the Fifth 2s. Aid only 22,500l. paid off out of 940,000l.; Malt 1713 was paid off and about 50 per cent. of Malt 1714.) Besides these there were certain Departmental Debts such as Navy Bills repayable in course and Army and Transport Debentures.
(3) Medium dated securities, such as Lottery Orders, secured on various new Duties; the full term of the Lotteries was normally 32 years but a part of the Principal was repayable every year during the currency of the authorizing Acts; the charge to the State, inclusive of repayment of Principal was about 8½l. to 9l. per cent.
(4) The irredeemable Annuities, originally for lives but now normally for a period not exceeding 99 years from the year of inception. Interest on a single life might be 14l. per cent. but for 99 years was at 15 or 16 years purchase i.e. between 6l. and 7l. per cent. with eventual extinction of Principal.
(5) Loans by Corporations at 5l. or 6l. per cent. redeemable by Parliament but otherwise ‘perpetual’; together with the perpetual Annuities under Stats. 1 Geo. I, st. 2, c. 19 and c. 21 supra.
Accounts and Estimates
On 16 January 1715–16 William Lowndes presented an Account of the Deficiencies of the Grants for the Year 1715; the first of his three Returns shewed
|Debtor (supplies voted);||£||s.||d.|
|Malt Act ultra the transfer||406,270||19||8|
|South Sea Stock: for a Year's Fund to the Company||£583,339||0||8|
|South Sea Stock: for the Publick||238,693||4||0|
|Deficiency besides converting Half Pay into Whole Pay, will be||50,886||11||10½|
|Creditor (the Uses):|
|Ordnance (Land Service and Half Pay)||93,629||19||9|
|Debts on Subsidies, and Arrears to Land Forces||250,000||0||0|
|Deficiencies of Classis Lottery 1711||53,322||0||0|
|Deficiencies of Classis Lottery 1712||52,938||9||8|
|Deficiency on former Act for Hops||86,805||0||0|
|Fund for South Sea Company||583,339||0||8|
|Commissioners of Accounts, for Salaries and Incidents||6,500||0||0|
This differs from the Return in the Treasury Yearly Account in giving the Malt Act yield at 406,270l. 19s. 8d. ultra the Transfer; the Yearly Account has 700,000l. for the Malt Act but on the other side has:
|Unsatisfied Loans transferred to Loans on the Malt Duties 1715||293,729||0||4|
This gives the same net figure of 406,270l. 19s. 8d. On the other hand the Treasury Yearly Account has:
|Unsatisfied Loans transferred to the Register for Loans on the Land Tax 1715||44,679||11||6½|
|The Commissioners of Equivalent||3,980||0||0|
|Allowance for prompt payment to Contributors to the 5l. per cent. Annuities and charges||21,391||13||10|
Thus the Treasury Yearly Account balances at 3,661,970l. 1s. 11d. with a deficit of 120,937l. 17s. 3d.
Accompanying this was an Estimate of the Money which would be wanting to make good to Services of the Navy so much as in the Year 1716 was to be paid by the Navy Treasurer for the Complement of the South Sea Company's Funds:
|The total Fund at 6l. per cent. with 8,000l. for management, amounted to||£608,000||0||0|
The money arisen in the year 1715
|Estimated yield of the Duties appropriated, etc.||282,297||8||11|
A Third Return gave the Deficiencies of all the Lottery Annuities, etc., amounting to 970,541l. 3s. 9¾d. (C.J., pp. 339–340.)
Land Forces and Ordnance Estimates, etc.
On January 16 William Pulteney presented his Estimate for the Land Forces in Great Britain:
|General Officers, Garrisons, Invalids and Contingencies (four items)||98,889||8||5|
and for Forces abroad:
|Annapolis Royal and Placentia||2,016||16||10½|
|Minorca (Officers, etc.)||6,903||13||6|
|Gibraltar (Officers etc.)||3,759||17||9|
Edward Ash presented the Estimates of the Ordnance for Land Services:
|The Ordinary of the Office||38,835||7||6|
|Port Mahon, Gibraltar, Annapolis and Placentia||9,962||3||9|
|Materials for the Fortifications of Port Mahon||2,965||10||0|
|Six months Charge of the Continuance of the said Fortifications||6,000||0||0|
|For supplying the Stores after the Rebellion||22,467||15||0|
|For Half Pay||2,605||11||8|
Thus the Army at 1,023,066l. was almost unchanged from 1,024,907l. of the previous year but the Ordnance was swollen from 93,630l. to 122,497l. (to nearest 1l. in each case). (C.J., pp. 341, 342.)
On January 20 Pulteney presented an Estimate of the charge of the 6,000 men taken into His Majesty's Service from the States General (pursuant to a Treaty concluded at Antwerp 14 November 1715 and laid before the House on 28 January 1715–16) amounting to 126,033l. 4s. 9d. (C.J., pp. 344, 353.)
On January 28 he presented an Account of Expenses incurred in 1715 and not provided for by Parliament, also an Estimate of Extraordinary Expenses for 1716. The former amounted to 146,916l. 1s. 7½d. for meeting which 132,563l. 9s. 6d. was available, leaving 14,352l. 12s. 1½d. to be provided for; the latter to 66,012l. 5s. 5d. (C.J., pp. 355–358.)
On March 17 he presented a State, Lists, Account and Estimates chiefly dealing with Half Pay but including also Extraordinaries for Dunkirk. These were ‘bound up with the other Papers of this Session’ (C.J., p. 404.)
On March 21 he presented an Account of the Number of Troops in North Britain on 20 July 1715; these included two Regiments of Dragoons, two Regiments of Foot, three Independent Companies and four Garrisons, total 474 horse, 1,314 foot, in all 1,788 men; three Regiments of Foot had been ordered to Ireland in June and had embarked early in July. (C.J., p. 407.)
On June 14 the House considered the Report of a Committee on the Petitions of certain Merchants of New England and New York who had furnished the Government with money for the Expedition to Canada in 1711. (C.J., p. 463.)
Navy Debt and Estimates, etc.
On January 26, Sir Charles Turner presented an Estimate of the Charge of Works at the several Navy Yards amounting to 230,623l. (C.J., p. 351.)
On February 14 he presented an Estimate of the Navy Debt amounting to 1,301,942l. 10s. 7d. whereof 516,724l. 7s. 8d. had been incurred before the present Reign and 785,218l. 2s. 11d. since that Reign. Tallies, Money and South Sea Stock available amounted to 605,271l. 8s. 3d. viz.:
|Executors of Sir Thomas Littleton||6,079||10||11|
|(C.J., pp. 374, 375.)|
On February 17 he presented an Account of Monies granted for the Service of the Navy on 2 April, 10 May and 11 August, 1715:
|The full Proportions||1,112,948||0||11|
|Received and applied||551,647||3||2|
|Leaving on 31 December 1715 to be applied||561,300||17||9|
|In Tallies, South Sea Stock, etc. remaining in the Treasurer's hands||531,492||3||9½|
|Wanting to complete the full Proportions||£29,808||13||11½|
|(C.J., p. 380.)|
On February 17 Sir Richard Sandford presented an Account of the Clear Produce of the Coinage Duty for three years; and of the Charge of Coining Gold and Silver money and of the Mints. The former amounted to 28,654l. 9s. 7½d., viz.: for 1713, 8,039l. 0s. 11d., for 1714, 8,720l. 19s. 0½d., and for 1715, 11,894l. 9s. 8d. the latter showed:
|1713||Charge arising by the Coinage||4,782||2||1½|
|Charge of the Mints in England and Scotland||9,912||11||9½|
|1714||Charge arising by the Coinage||10,075||10||4|
|Charge of both Mints||15,171||8||1|
|1715||Charge arising by the Coinage||13,425||3||3½|
|Charge of both Mints||18,132||7||10½|
|(C.J., p. 378.)|
Customs, Salt Duties, etc.
On March 1 the Commissioners of Customs reported on the rating of Senna, which had escaped Duty as being for Dyers' use; it appeared that only a form of plaintain was used in dyeing, not the true medicinal senna. (C.J., pp. 385, 386.)
On March 17 the Commissioners for the Duties on Salt presented their Accounts of the Salt Duties and of Drawbacks on the same. The Gross Produce had increased from 380,128l. 19s. 0¼d. in 1708 to 543,515l. 10s. 4½d. in 1714 but the Drawbacks had risen from 188,860l. 8s. 3¼d. to 374,258l. 16s. 6¼d.; there had been a great rise in salt and in fish exported since the end of the war. (C.J., p. 403.)
On March 22 the Commissioners of Customs presented some Accounts which, being ‘bound up with the other Papers of this Session’, are not now available. (C.J., p. 409.)
On April 14 John Chetwynd reported on frauds in mixing English leaves with Tobacco. (C.J., p. 421.)
On April 18 the Commissioners for the Salt Duties gave a particular Account of the Several Allowances made on the Exportation of Fish and what quantities of Salt were used in curing the same; and of Frauds discovered. The Commissioners considered the Drawbacks excessive, based in some cases on more than twice the quantity of Salt actually used; foreign Salt was also being run, particularly upon the Cornish coast. (C.J., pp. 423, 424.)
On 19 January 1715–16 the Committee of Supply reported several Resolutions as follows, to which the Commons agreed:
|that 10,000 Men be allowed for the Sea Service for the Year 1716, from 1 January 1715–16 and that for maintaining the said 10,000 men for 13 months, including the Ordnance for Sea Service, a Sum be granted not exceeding 4l. per man per month||520,000||0||0|
|that, for the Ordinary of the Navy for the year 1716, including Half Pay, a Sum be granted not exceeding||233,849||19||6|
|that, to make good for the Services of the Navy so much as in the year 1716 is, by Estimation, to be paid by the Treasurer of the Navy for the Complement of the Funds of the South Sea Company, a Sum be granted not exceeding||295,202||11||1|
|that, for Maintaining Guards, Garrisons and other Land Forces in Great Britain, Jersey and Guernsey, and 28 Companies of Invalids, and 3 Independent Companies in North Britain, for the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||993,015||4||5|
|that, for maintaining the Forces in America, for the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||34,837||17||10½|
|that, for maintaining the Forces and Garrison in Minorca, for the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||57,917||19||6|
|that, for maintaining the Forces and Garrison at Gibraltar, for the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||37,294||12||9|
|that, for the charge of the Office of Ordnance, for Land Service, for the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||122,496||18||2½|
|that, to make good the Deficiency of the Grants for the year 1715, a Sum be granted not exceeding||50,886||11||10½|
|(C.J., p. 344.)|
On January 28 the Commons agreed with a further Resolution of the Committee of Supply:
|that, for the pay of the 6,000 men taken into the King's Service from the States General of the United Provinces, a Sum be granted not exceeding||126,033||4||9|
|(C.J., p. 354.)|
On February 14 the Commons agreed:
|that, to make good several Expenses of the Land Forces for the year 1715, over and above the Sum of 132,563l. 9s. 6d. saved by the Pay of 13 Regiments of Dragoons, 8 Regiments of Foot, and 4 Companies of the Coldstream Regiment, from 21 July 1715 to 24 December 1715, a Sum be granted not exceeding||14,352||12||1½|
|and that, for several Extraordinary Expenses of the Land Forces, for the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||66,012||5||5|
|(C.J., p. 373.)|
On March 3 in order to make good Deficiencies and for the charges of the Mint, the Commons agreed with the Resolutions following:
|that, to discharge one year's Interest at 6l. per cent. per annum on 61,707l. 3s. 2d. remaining unsatisfied of Loans on the Duties on Low Wines [3 & 4 Anne, c. 18] further secured by the Coffee etc. Duties [6 Anne, c. 50], a Sum be granted not exceeding||3,702||8||7|
|that, for the like Interest on 314,219l. 11s. 2¼ d. remaining unsatisfied of the Loans on the Duties on Candles [8 Anne, c. 5] a Sum be granted not exceeding||18,853||3||6|
|that, for supplying the Deficiency of the Fund of 168,003l. per annum for the 10l. Lottery of 1712 [10 Anne, c. 18] a Sum be granted not exceeding||42,665||13||6|
|that, for defraying the charge of the Mints etc. and thereby to encourage the bringing in of Gold and Silver to be coined, a Revenue be set up etc. for 7 years from 1 May 1715 not exceeding per annum||15,000||0||0|
|(C.J., p. 388.)|
On March 24 it was agreed:
|that, for the extraordinary Repairs of the Navy, in the year 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||230,623||0||0|
|that, to make up the Half Pay to the Officers of the Land Forces and Marines disbanded, being natural born Subjects or naturalized, [to] full pay, for one year, 26 July 1715 to 25 July 1716, a Sum be granted not exceeding||87,160||11||0|
|that, for Half Pay for the year 1716, upon account, to Officers of the Land Forces and Marines disbanded, being natural born Subjects or naturalized, a Sum be granted not exceeding||100,146||15||0|
|that, to defray several extraordinary charges at Dunkirk, a Sum be granted not exceeding||3,311||16||10½|
|(C.J., p. 412.)|
Thus the Estimates were accepted and Supply voted before the end of the Old Style year. This was a reversion to previous practice; for 1709 Supply had been voted November 1708 to February 1708–9; for 1710 in November and December 1709; for 1711 from December 1710 to March 1710–11; for 1712 from December 1711 to 1 April 1712. But in 1713, pending the conclusion of the Treaty of Utrecht, successive prorogations of Parliament had resulted in grave delay, so that the voting of Supply stretched from April 18 to July 1. In 1714, the year of the Queen's last illnesses and death, the newly elected Parliament, having chosen its Speaker in February 1713–14, was unable to despatch other business until March and Supply was voted 18 March 1713–14 to 31 May 1714. From 25 August 1714 Parliament was repeatedly prorogued and the new Parliament, for the calling of which the Proclamation had been issued in January 1714–15, did not meet until March 17; Supply for 1715 was therefore voted from April 2 to July 21.
The Votes may be thus classified:
for 10,000 Men, including the Ordnance for Sea Service
|the Ordinary of the Navy||233,849||19||6|
|Add to make good for the service of the Navy so much as is to be paid by the Navy Treasurer to the South Sea Company||295,202||11||1|
for the Guards and Garrisons, etc.
|for Forces in America||34,837||17||10½|
|for Forces in Minorca||57,917||19||6|
|for Forces at Gibraltar||37,294||12||9|
|for 6,000 Men from the States General||126,033||4||9|
|for the Land Forces||14,352||12||1½|
|to make up half pay [to] full pay||87,160||11||0|
|for half pay||100,146||15||0|
|for the demolition of Dunkirk||3,311||16||10½|
for Ordnance Land Services
for Deficiencies on the Grants 1715
|for unsatisfied Loans on Low Wines||3,702||8||7|
|for Interest on Loans on Candles||18,853||3||6|
|for two years Deficiency on the 10l. Lottery 1712||42,665||13||6|
|to this must be added:|
Charges of the Mint; such sum as with the Coinage Duty will amount to
|Salaries and incidents of the Commissioners of Accounts||3,250||0||0|
The Yearly Account of the Treasury (Treasury, General Accounts, Yearly: T. 30/6) includes the salaries etc. of the Commissioners of Accounts but not the Charges of the Mint; the South Sea Company, in lieu of 295,202l. 11s. 1d. ‘will be satisfied with 242,168l. 9s. 4½d.’ Thus the total is brought to 2,988,579l. 4s. 3d.
WAYS AND MEANS
The Bill for the Land Tax was ordered 25 January 1715–16 when Mr. Farrer from the Committee of the Whole House for Ways and Means reported in favour of a 4s. rate; an Amendment to substitute a 3s. rate was defeated (C.J., p. 349); the Bill was accordingly presented next day and read the First time (C.J., p. 350). After further consideration in Committee and after certain Amendments the Bill was ordered to be engrossed on February 6 (C.J., p. 368) and after further Amendments passed on February 8 (C.J., p. 370).
The Bill contained a provocative preamble relating to the ‘Extraordinary Burthen’ which the ‘Unnatural Rebellion’ had made necessary; the raising whereof could not be ascribed to any Act done by the King since his Accession; ‘but all the Mischiefs were in truth owing to the Fatal and Pernicious Councils given by some Persons in the late Male Administration, when, under pretence of Procuring Peace Abroad, the present Destructive War was Projected to be brought into the very Bowels of our Native Country at Home’, etc.
The House of Lords objected to this wording and a Committee was appointed to inquire into the Rights of that House to alter a Money Bill. Few, if any, precedents could be found, at least since the Restoration in 1660, from which time the Commons would never suffer such alterations. Several Lords spoke against the preamble in Grand Committee and it was finally decided to let the Bill pass but at the same time to enter in the Lords Journal a Protest that, although the Bill contained several assertions of facts different from the matter of the said Bill, yet their Lordships out of zeal for His Majesty's Service and the public good, had ordered ‘That it be an Instruction to the Committee of the Whole House to agree to the said Preamble without any Amendment’. Nevertheless, to prevent any ill consequences from such a precedent for the future, they had thought fit to declare ‘That they will not hereafter admit … of a proceeding so contrary to the rules and methods of Parliament’ and ‘That they will not in any manner hold themselves concluded by any of the said assertions in any judicial proceeding or debate whatsoever’ … (‘Parliamentary History’, Vol. VII, pp. 287, 288).
Subject to this Protest the Bill was passed and the Commons were informed accordingly on February 16 (C.J., p. 377). It received the Royal Assent on February 17 becoming law as Stat. 1 Geo. I, c. 31. The preamble as abovementioned ascribed the necessity of restoring the 4s. rate of tax to the maladministration of some persons in the late Tory Government who, under pretence of securing peace abroad, had projected war at home and who, under the false colour of paying the Public Debts, had unnecessarily encumbered the Public Revenues. The Act provided for the raising in Great Britain of 2,041,111l. whereof 1,993,157l. 5s. 9d. was to be raised in England, in one year from 25 March 1716. Personal estates etc. were to pay 4s. in the 1l. Special relief was allowed for the Palaces of Whitehall and St. James's, deficiencies under previous Acts being discharged. There was a Clause of Loan at 6l. per cent.
The Bill for continuing the Malt Duties was ordered 10 March 1715–16, read March 12, and committed March 23, the Committee being empowered on that day to receive several additional Clauses. It was further committed 26 March and 9 April 1716; reported and ordered to be engrossed April 12; passed April 28; agreed to by the Lords May 4; it received the Royal Assent on May 7 (C.J., pp. 397, 398, 410, 414, 416, 419, 433, 437, 438). The Act [Stat. 1 Geo. I, c. 36] which continued the Duties from 23 June 1716 to 24 June 1717, contained also various provisions relating to Lotteries etc. and for the prevention of Frauds in various Duties. This Act likewise contained a Clause of Loan at 6l. per cent.
Against the sum of 2,988,579l. 4s. 3d. shown as voted for Supply (see above) the Treasury Yearly Account gives the estimated value of the Grants in Parliament as follows:
|The Land Tax of 4s. in the 1l.; at 6l. per cent. per annum||1,880,000||0||0|
|The Malt Duties; at 6l. per cent. per annum||531,564||8||1¾|
This shows an estimated Deficit of 577,014l. 16s. 1¼d. but, for the first time since these figures were given in the Yearly Accounts, without the aid of any special source of Revenue such as a Lottery to be paid for over a period of years. In every year there was some deficit shown, viz. for 1709 25,906l. 5s. 4½d., for 1710 7,491l., for 1711 589,839l. 17s. 4½d., for 1712 863,343l. 13s. 9d., for 1713 425,049l. 8s. 3½d., for 1714 13,976l. 17s. 9d. and for 1715 120,937l. 17s. 3d.
OTHER ACTS OF PARLIAMENT
Mr. Farrer's Report from the Committee of Ways and Means on 10 March 1715–16 besides recommending the continuance of the Malt Tax, as above, gave also the Opinion of the Committee:
that the Two-third part of the Lands, Tenements, Hereditaments, Leases and Farms of all Popish Recusants convict be raised levied, and applied, towards the Supply … for suppressing the … Rebellion;
that towards defraying the Charge of His Majesty's Mints, the Act … [Stat. 7 Anne, c. 24] be continued for the Space of seven years from 1 March 1715–16;
that the Commissioners of the Treasury … be impowered, out of the publick Supplies granted in this Session … to furnish so much as, together with the Coinage Duty, may make up any Sum, not exceeding 15,000l. per annum, to carry on the Coinage;
that, upon the Importation of Senna, which is a Drug used in Medicine, and not in the Dyeing Trade, the same be charged with
. Duties . as a Medicinal Drug.
that all the Stocks of … Senna … be charged with so much as shall make up the Duties to be paid on the Importation of Senna as a Medicinal Drug.
(C.J., pp. 397, 398.)
In accordance with these recommendations a Bill to encourage the Coinage of Money etc. was read 14 March 1715–16 and committed March 24, etc. It was reported and ordered to be ingrossed on 4 May 1716, passed May 12 and agreed to by the Lords June 19. (C.J., pp. 401, 413, 416, 418, 420, 424, 426, 430, 432, 434, 437, 445, 467.) The Act [Stat. 1 Geo. I, c. 43] continues the Coinage Duties for seven years and provides for the Treasury to supply any Deficiency in these Duties to make up a sum not exceeding 15,000l. in any one year. The Act further provides that after 9 May 1716 Senna shall pay Duty as a Medicinal Drug and that Stock in hand shall be liable for the difference in Duty between that payable as a Medicinal Drug and that as a Drug used in dyeing.
Thirdly the Act contains a general Appropriation Clause for the application of Monies under the Land Tax Act and the Malt Duties Act to the service of the Navy, Army and Ordnance and to make good Deficiencies, etc. but not so as to obstruct making good Deficiencies to the South Sea Company or the payment of their salaries to the Commissioners of Accounts, etc. as by Statute [1 Geo. I, c. 35] provided.
An Act [Stat. 1 Geo. I, c. 55] for registering Papists' names and estates was also passed. (C.J., pp. 427, 435, 439, 446, 468, 469, 470.)
Another Act [Stat. 1 Geo. I, c. 40] provided for the free Importation of Cochineal for nine months from 31 March 1716; Cochineal was required for the woollen trade and supplies from Spain and the places of its growth were by reason of the loss of the Spanish flotilla for the time being insufficient.
THE DECLARED ACCOUNTS
Hitherto it has in general been possible to use both the Pipe Office and the Audit Office series of Accounts; for recent Volumes of this Calendar it has been the Editor's normal practice to use the Pipe Office Roll in the first instance and on proof-reading to check from that of the Audit Office. But from 1715 onwards (save in exceptional instances) one copy only of each Account, normally that of the Audit Office, written on paper, is now preserved in the Public Record Office.
An explanation of how the two series came into being and of the system of preparing, declaring, abstracting and preserving these Accounts in the various Offices will be found in the ‘Guide to the Manuscripts preserved in the Public Record Office’ by the late M. S. Giuseppi, Vol. I (1923), pp. 118, 119, and a fuller article on the subject entitled ‘Notes on the Origin of the Declared Account’ by Mrs. Eric George (M. Dorothy George) in the ‘English Historical Review’, Vol. XXXI (1910), pp. 41 et seqq. mentioned in the footnote on page 118 of the abovementioned ‘Guide’
In pursuance of a Schedule drawn up under Section One of the Public Record Office Act 1877 [40 and 41 Vict,, c. 55, s.l.] and laid before Parliament in January 1891 the parchment duplicates of the Declared Accounts (other than those of the Excise), 1715 to 1821, and of the Declared Accounts of the Excise, 1715 to 1849, were presented to the Curators of the Bodleian Library at Oxford. During the War of 1939–45 the Curators asked to be relieved of these documents which were accordingly returned to the Public Record Office and power was then taken, by a Schedule dated 21 January 1942 and laid before Parliament in February 1942, to destroy them forthwith.
It was proposed at the same time under Section One of the Public Record Office Act 1898 [61 and 62 Vict., c. 12, s. 1] to destroy earlier Rolls of this series from 1660 onwards. Fortunately these documents were at the time dispersed, as a protection against bombing, in one or more country repositories and the Schedule could not be put into immediate effect.
Although there may be an occasional ‘working note’ or informal memorandum on the Audit Office Roll which does not appear on that of the Pipe Office, there is no difference in matter of any substance between the two series and for all essential purposes both may be regarded as equipollent originals. Historically, however, the parchment or Pipe Office Roll is the older form and the procedure after its Declaration conforms to the ‘Ancient Course’ of the Exchequer; from the practical point of view it is far the more durable.