Charles II, 1660: An Act for restraining the takeing of Excessive Usury.

Pages 236-237

Statutes of the Realm: Volume 5, 1628-80. Originally published by Great Britain Record Commission, s.l, 1819.

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Recital that Abatement of Interest is advantageous to Trade.

Reasons for passing this Act.; None to take above Six Pounds for a Hundred Pounds.; All Securitites, on which higher Interest reserved, void.; Persons taking, &c. by any Shift higher Interest; Penalty.

FOASMUCH as the Abatement of Interest from Ten in the Hundred in former times hath beene found by notable experience beneficiall to the Advancement of Trade and Improvement of Lands by good Husbandry with many other considerable advantages to this Nation, especially the reduceing of it to a nearer proportion with Forraigne States with whom wee traffique, And wheras in fresh memory the like fall from Eight to Six in the Hundred by a late constant practise hath found the like Successe to the generall contentment of this Nation as is visible by severall Improvements. And whereas it is the endeavour of some at present to reduce it backe againe in practice to the allowance of the Statute still in force to Eight in the Hundred to the great discouragement of Ingenuity and industry in the Husbandry Trade and Commerce of this Nation. Bee it for the Reasons aforesaid Enacted by the Kings most Excellent Majestye and the Lords and Commons in this present Parliament assembled That noe person or persons whatsoever from and after the twenty ninth day of September in the yeare of our Lord One thousand six hundred and sixty upon any Contract shall from and after the said twenty ninth ( (fn. 1) ) of September take directly or indirectly for Loane of any [Money (fn. 2) ] Wares Merchandice or other Commodityes whatsoever above the value of Six Pounds for the Forbearance of one Hundred Pounds for a Yeare, and soe after that Rate for a greater or lesser Summe or for a longer or shorter time, And that all Bonds Contracts and Assurances whatsoeyer made after the time aforesaid for payment of any principall or money to be lent or covenanted to be performed upon or for any Usury, wherupon or whereby there shall be reserved or taken above the Rate of Six pounds in the Hundred as aforesaid shall be utterly void, And that all and every person and persons whatsoever which shall after the time aforesaid upon any Contract to be made after the said twenty ninth day of September take accept and receive by way or meanes of any corrupt Bargaine Loane Exchange Cheivesaunce Shift or Interest of any Wares Merchandise or other thing or things whatsoever, or by any deceitfull way or meanes or by any covin, engine or deceitfull conveyance for the forbearing or giveing day of payment for one whole yeare of and for their Money or other thing above the Su[m]me of Six pounds for the forbearing of One hundred pounds for a yeare, and soe after that Rate for a greater or lesser Summe or for a longer or shorter Terme shall forfeit and loose for every such offence the treble value of the Moneyes Wares Merchandize and other things soe Lent Bargained Sold Exchanged or Shifted;

II. Scriveners taking above 5s. for the Loan of £ 100 for a Year, or above 12d. for making, &c. Bonds, &c.

Penalty £20 and Imprisonment.

And be it further Enacted by the authority aforesaid That all and every Scrivenor and Scrivenors Broker and Brokers Sollicitor and Sollicitors Driver and Drivers of Bargaines for Contracts who shall after said twenty nineth day of September take or receive directly or indirectly any Summe or Summes of Money or other reward or thing for Brokage Solliciting Driving or Procureing the Loane or forbearing of any Summe or Summes of Money over and above the Rate or Value of five shillings for the Loane, or forbearing of one hundred pounds for a yeare and soe rateably, or above twelve pence for [the (fn. 3) ] making or renewing of the Bond or Bill for the Loane, or for forbearing thereof, or for any Counterbond or Bill concerning the same shall forfeite for every such Offence twenty pounds and have Imprisonment for halfe a yeare; The one moyety of all which forfeitures to be to the King our Soveraigne Lord His Heires and Successors, And the other moyety to him or them that will sue for the same in the same County where the severall Offences are committed and not elsewhere by action of Debt Bill Plaint or Information, in which noe Essoigne Wager of Law, or protection to be allowed.


  • 1. Day O.
  • 2. Moneyes O.
  • 3. O. omits.