BHO

William III, 1697-8: An Act for settling and adjusting the Proportion of Fine Silver Silk for the better making of Silver and Gold Thread and to prevent the Abuses of Wire-Drawers. [Chapter XXXIX. Rot. Parl. 9 Gul.III.p.6.n.8.]

Pages 420-421

Statutes of the Realm: Volume 7, 1695-1701. Originally published by Great Britain Record Commission, s.l, 1820.

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In this section

(fn. 1) (fn. 2) Recital that Abuses had been committed in the refining of Silver, and making Silver and Gold Thread

Regulation of Silver Wire to be drawn for making Gold and Silver Thread; Penalty.

Whereas of late by several Refiners Wire-Drawers and others concerned in the refining of Silver and guilding thereof and in making of Silver and Gold Thread and Wire either through Unskilfulness or coveting to make an unjust Advantage to themselves there have been committed several Abuses in the refining of Silver and making of Silver and Gold Thread and Wire especially in not allowing a due Proportion of Fine Silver to Silk whereby the Silver breaking and crumbling off from the Silk there not only is a great Loss to the respective Buyers but an irreparable Loss to the Nation in general in the wasting and consuming the Bullion thereof and the said Silver and Gold Thread and the Manufactures in which the "same are made use of consequently have not that Credit Use and Service that Silver Thread and the Manufactures thereof made Abroad have to the great Discouragement of the Exportation of the said Silver Thread and Manufactures and the Use and Wear of the same at Home For Remedy whereof for the future Be it enacted by the Kings most Excellent Majesty by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lord Spiritual and Temporal and Commons in this present Parliament assembled and by Authority of the same That from and after the Four and twentieth Day of July One thousand six hundred ninety eight all Silver Wire to be drawn for the making of Gold and Silver Thread shall hold at the least Eleven Ounces Sixteen Peny Weight [of Fine Silver upon every Pound Weight (fn. 3) ] Troy And that all Silver to be guilt and made Use of in the Wire-Drawers Trade shall hold at the least Eleven Ounces Sixteen Peny Weight of Fine Silver upon the Pound Weight Troy and shall not have less than Four Peny Weight of Fine Gold laid upon each Pound Weight of the said Silver upon Pain to forfeit Five Shillings an Ounce for every Ounce to be paid by the Refiner or Maker thereof.

II. Colouring gilt Wire with Verdigrease, &c.

Penalty; Allowance for Gold and Silver reduced into Plate, and for Gold and Silver Thread of the Fineness herein mentioned; How Gold and Silver Plate is to be spun; Penalty.; Undue laying of Plate upon Silk, Penalty.

And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That from and after the said Four and twentieth Day of July no guilt Wire shall be couloured with Verdigrease or Dead Head or any other forced Colour upon Pain to forfeit Two Shillings and Six Pence an Ounce for every Ounce so coloured And for all Gold and Silver prepared as aforesaid and reduced into Plate there shall be allowed at the least Six Ounces of the said Plate to cover Four Ounces of Silk the Finest of which Silk shall not run above Sixteen Yards to the Peny Weight Troy And that for all Gold and Silver Threads made Finer than the aforesaid Sizes there shal be allowed at the least Six Ounces of Plate to cover Three Ounces and an Half of Silk the Finest of which said Silk shal not run above Thirty six Yards to the Peny Weight Troy And that for all Gold and Silver Threads made Finer then the aforesaid Sizes there shall be allowed at the least Six Ounces of Plate to cover Three Ounces of Silk the Finest of which Silk shall not run above Ninety Yards to One Peny Weight Troy And for all Gold and Silver Thread made Finer. Six Ounces of Plate to cover Two Ounces and an Half of Silk And that for the future all Gold and Silver Plate shall be spun close upon well boiled and light dyed Silk only (except Frost being run thin and spun upon differing coloured Silk) upon Pain of forfeiting Two Shillings and Six Pence an Ounce for [every Ounce (fn. 3) ] otherwise made And that any Spinner of Gold and Silver Thread that shall lay Gold or Silver Plate upon Silk in other Proportion than as aforesaid shall forfeit and pay for each and every Ounce so spun the Sum of Two Shillings.

III. How Metal inferior to Silver shall be spun.

Penalty.

And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That from and after the said Four and twentieth Day of July Copper Brass and every other inferiour Metal than Silver shall be spun upon Thread Yarn or Incle only and not upon Silk upon Pain that each and every Person offending therein shall forfeit Five Shillings for every Ounce so spun.

IV. Importing Gold or Silver or inferior Thread.;

Penalty.

And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That from and after the said Four and twentieth Day of July no Gold or Silver Thread Lace Fringe or other Work made thereof nor any Thread made of Copper Brass or any inferiour Metal or Wire or Plate ready wrought for the covering of Silk or Thread shall be imported or brought into this Kingdom of England Dominion of Wales or Town of Berwick upon Tweed upon Pain of being forfeited and burnt.

V. How Penalties divided and recovered.

And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That [after (fn. 4) ] the several Penalties and Forfeitures made and inflicted by this Act One Moiety thereof shall be the King and the other Moiety to him or them that shall inform sue or prosecute for the same And that the said Penalties and Forfeitures may be prosecuted sued for and recovered by Bill Plaint or Information in any of His Majesties Court of Record at Westminster wherein no Essoign Protection Priviledge or Wager of Law shall be allowed or more than One Imparlance.

VI. In Actions for executing Act, General Issue may be pleaded.;

Treble Costs.

And be it further enacted by the Authority aforesaid That if any Person shall be sued for what he or they shal do in Execution of this Act he or they may plead the General Issue and give the Special Matter in Evidence And if the Plaintiff shall become nonsuit or discontinue his or their Action or if a Verdict pass against him or them the Defendant shall recover Treble Costs for which Execution shall issue in such Manner as in other Cases where Costs are allowed to Defendants.

VII. Proviso in respect of Penalties for selling, &c. Wire and Thread, &c. before 29th Sept. 1699.

Provided always That nothing in this Act contained shall be construed to inflict any Penalty upon any Person for selling or exposing to Sale any Silver Wire or Silver or Gold Thread or any Lace or Fringe on or before the Nine and twentieth Day of September One thousand six hundred ninety nine though the same be not made according to the Rules and Directions of this Act provided the same be proved by Oath to be made by One or more credible Witnesses before some Justice of Peace of the County City or Place where the same shall be sold or exposed to Sale who is and are hereby impowred to administer the same That such Goods were made on or before the said Four and twentieth Day of July One thousand six hundred ninety eight.

VIII. Limitation of Action.

Provided always That every Suit Action or Prosecution to be brought by virtue of this Act shall be commenced within Six Months after the Offence committed.

IX. Continuance of Act.

Provided always and be it enacted by the Authority aforesaid That this Act shall continue for the Space of Three Years and from thence to the ( (fn. 5) ) next Session of Parliament and no longer Any Thing in this Act to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding.

Footnotes

  • 1. and O.
  • 2. the O.
  • 3. interlined on the Roll.
  • 4. Of O. and King's Printer's Copy.
  • 5. end of the O. and King's Printer's Copy.