Statutes of the Realm: Volume 7, 1695-1701. Originally published by Great Britain Record Commission, s.l, 1820.
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Reasons for passing this Act; Making, selling, or putting on Clothes, Buttons made of Cloth, &c; Penalty.
Whereas the Maintenance and Subsistance of many Thousands of Men Women and Children within this Kingdom depends upon the makeing of Silk Mohair Gimp and Thread Buttons with the Needle and great Numbers of Throwsters Twisters Spinners Winders Dyers and others are employed in preparing the Materialls of which such Buttons are made And whereas the Silk and Mohair wherewith the said Buttons are made is purchased in Turky and other Forreigne Parts in exchange for our Woollen Manufacture to the great Consumption and Encouragement thereof And whereas the making of such Needle-Wrought Buttons hath of late been much lessenned and discouraged by the making and wearing of Buttons made of [the (fn. 1) ] Shredds of Cloth Serge Drugget Frize Camlett and other Stuffs and Materialls of which Clothes are usually made and alsoe by Buttons made of Wood only and turned in Imitation of other Buttons to the great Impoverishment of all those whose Livelyhood depended upon the making the said Needle-Wrought Buttons and preparing the Materialls thereof And to the great Prejudice of the Woollen Manufacture wherewith such Materials are purchased as aforesaid by which meanes great Numbers of the said poor People are become Burthensome to their respective Parishes For Remedy whereof Be it enacted by the Kings most Excellent Majesty by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spirituall and Temporall and Commons in this present Parliament assembled and by Authority of the same That from and after the Tenth Day of February One thousand six hundred ninety and eight no Person or Persons whatsoever within the Kingdom of England Dominion of Wales and Towne of Berwick upon Tweed shall make sell or sett on or cause to be made sold or sett on any Clothes or wearing Garments whatsoever any Buttons made of Cloth Serge Drugget Frize Camlett or any other Stuffs of which Clothes and Wearing Garments are usually made or any Buttons made of Wood only and turned in Imitation of other Buttons upon Forfeiture of the Summ of Fourty Shillings for every Dozen of such Buttons soe made sold or sett on or caused to be made sold or sett on as aforesaid and in like Proportion for any lesser Quantity one Moyety thereof to be to the Use of His Majesty His Heires and Successors and the other Moyety thereof to him her or them that shall sue for the same by Action of Debt Bill Plaint or Information in any of His Majesties Courts of Record wherein no Essoigne Protection or Wager of Law or more than one Imparlance shall be allowed.