Thursday, March 1.
The Bill for exportation of Leather [was read a second time.]
Sir John Knight.] Exportation of Leather will better the land by increase of the price of Leather.
Sir Richard Everard.] Proffers a Petition from the
leather-cutters against the Bill.
Col. Birch.] He likes the Bill, but would have any
Petition heard concerning it.
The Petition imported "either to dismiss the Bill, or to be
heard at the Bar." The Petition was referred to a Committee,
where the shoe-makers [or leather-cutters] pretended, "that their
trade would be spoiled by the Bill, by reason of the many persons
they set on work for boots and shoes for the plantations." To
which it was replied, by the leather-sellers, "that formerly,
when exportation of Leather was not prohibited, the Custom
Entry was near as much as since the prohibition. [The Bill was
ordered to be committed (fn. 1) .]
A Bill to encourage the planting and sowing of hemp and
flax [was read the second time.]
Sir Thomas Mompesson.] The Bill is not practicable.
Some lands cannot bear Hemp.
Mr Sacheverell.] Would have the Committee consider
what countries the Bill will be proper for. 'Tis for
ours, and would commit it.
Col. Birch.] He brought the Bill in—In a body natural, if all the blood be brought up into the head,
there will follow a dissolution. All the money is brought
to London, and little left in the country but clipt and
worn money. If it be so in fact, what will England
come to in a short time? The country is almost depopulated for want of employment, and the people
will follow employment. Employment is either from
husbandry or trade. Want of people has forced the
farmer to thrash himself. He cannot keep servants,
corn is so cheap; and when 'tis got, there is nobody to
eat it, and yet when we reap it, there is eighteen pence
or two shillings a day for workmen, so few are there to
be got. He is far from thinking this Bill to be a present advantage to the nation this year—But where land
is proper for it, in most towns some is sown. This
is the end of this Bill; if it pass, not one poor person
will be in England that will but work. This half acre
(enjoined in the Bill) is as much as most of the poor
of a parish can dress. A poor woman that can get
three pence half-penny a day will work, but you have
not work for them without such a Bill, not for one in
ten. Twenty shillings-worth of linnen takes up more
hands to make it, than ten pounds-worth of woollen.
Though there is a Statute to set the poor to work, it
rather increases the poor, than tends to a diminution.
They allow them money weekly. If wool should fail,
this would set the poor to work. You pay 150,000l.
per ann. for foreign linnens—Possibly, you may clap
some of the money to be raised upon it. Possibly, you
may employ all the poor, and whether you will continue this expensive trade of linnen, and be pestered
with poor for a year or two's inconvenience on gentlemen's lands, till this be settled, leaves it to you.
Mr Swynfin.] He thinks it a great confidence in
Birch to teach all gentlemen and farmers in England
how to husband their land. If there be any profit in
planting hemp and flax, there needs no law to compell men to it, but that of necessity, all ways else failing. Flax and hemp are no strangers here. The sowing of it goes out, because people make no profit of
it. If it were for their advantage, men would turn all
their lands to it. Birch tells you, "he has sown none
these seven years, though he has land fit for it." He
believes he can make no profit of it. Is it imaginable
this can take any effect? By experience, we find, flax
is at so low a rate that they sow it no more, and persons
will pay a penalty rather than do it, and so the Act
may be an universal penalty. It may possibly breed
some surveyors, and make officers break their oaths.
How can he swear to so many acres? Can this then
help the poor, or the farmers, who, by this law, must
groan under the penalties? This Bill is, upon a supposition only, to put all husbandmen upon new experiments. Let us have no more trouble with this Bill, to
hinder us from greater affairs.
Sir George Downing.] He believes that for French
linnen there goes alone 500,000l. per ann. besides other linnen. He is for the Bill, but utterly against the
imposing the half acre in a hundred acres to be
planted with hemp and flax under a penalty. He is not
for a tax under a continued pretence; and this of
planting, &c; and to the end of the world. He
knows a hundred parishes that have not one acre fit
for it. Would move for planting olives, oranges, or
pomegranates, as practicable as this. Hemp and flax
can only be planted on mellow ground. As for Hertsordshire husbandry, one changed his husbandry three
miles off, and he spoiled his husbandry quite. You
may as well plant Canary wine, under as specious
pretences, as hemp and flax. By this Bill, we bring
in a Law to wipe away all covenants and jointures, &c,
nay, to plough up old pasture, and meadows, &c.
perhaps in twenty years no grass will come up again.
Every year this half acre to plant hemp, &c. and in
time all this done to plant Canary grapes. In 43 Eliz.
was there ever a more specious pretence than, in that
Statute, to maintain the poor, and the matter not mended? For mankind (another Statute) hoot him out of
the parish; but for foxes, hunt them, but spare them
to make more sport. He has lived in countries where
care is taken of the poor, but not this way. Consider
what this charitable pretence of relieving the poor has
been. But so much tax upon your lands. In St Martin's parish what vast taxes are raised for the poor?
What becomes of it? All is paid and all spent. If
you will encourage linnen manufactures, make it every
man's interest to plant it; else you'll have your lands
taxed, and nothing else will come of it. The flaxdressers were invited hither from abroad, and then
starts up a little Statute of freedom, and they rot in
jail. Though you could have flax for nothing,
this will not turn to account, the French linnen coming it at one third part value that we can make it at.
Col. Birch.] Is glad that Downing speaks a language
that he understands. Now apropos. He said, "this
Bill would make some men popular." That's apropos.
He has set men at work all near him—Downing might
have as well charitably interpreted him. 'Tis said, this Bill
is against the interest of all England. He brings on
this to repeal the Statute of 43 Elizabeth, that you may
have this to say, here's work for all England. To whip
and slash beggars, and have no work for them, is that
sense?—One Statute is to maintain idle persons without
work. Swynfin said "he thought it a great confidence
to teach all the farmers how to husband their land." But
he can show him when this Bill passed the House
twice, and was not rejected on this account, but only
on the rate of half a crown for tythe composition.
'Twas was not the matter that was rejected. If the Bill pass,
you may, in three months after, take away the Statute of
43 Eliz. For here's work to employ the poor. There's
no intent by the Bill, but, being weary of the cry of
the poor, to prevent people from going into France
or the plantations. As the case stands now, 'tis true,
we can buy linnen cheaper than plant it—He does aver,
that, if the thing were equal in all parishes, no poor
would be in England.
Sir William Coventry.] Doubts not but that we have
need to employ the poor. If a man have a wife and
children, and the man break, and is not able to maintain them, he goes to the plantations, or does any thing,
for a livelihood. He desires that encouragement may be
given to the planting hemp and flax. But the only material objection is, the compulsatory parts of the Bill. They
are not usually well executed; mens hearts go not along
with it. He would have the Committee think of an
inducement and encouragement to do it, as well as
compulsion. 'Tis said, "that this Bill is a Devil that
haunts us." If so, one Devil went up to the Lords,
and another came down from them. The Lords would
have had five shillings upon the acre in lieu of tythe,
and the Commons but two shillings and sixpence.
'Twas then the opinion of this House, that five
shillings would load it too high, and we could not
lower it, and that threw the Bill out. All the ill in it
must come from the compulsatory part, and he would
have a Committee to qualify it.
Mr Pepys.] 'Tis an ill consideration, that so essential
a thing as setting out the fleet should depend upon this.
Sails are all upon French cloths. We have but one sort
of them not from France; those are Holland doubles—
Would not depend on any of our best friends the Dutch,
and our worst enemies the French, for sails. Thereforè
would commit the Bill.
Sir Thomas Clarges.] If this planting should be compulsory, the Debate would enervate the Bill—Nobody
will do it. Let the Bill be rather temporary. He
would not depend either on France or Holland for sending our fleet. He remembers an expedient for the
compulsory part, viz. lessening the tythe, and would
have that referred to the Committee.
Col. Birch.] Since the orthodox Clergy came home
again, land has fallen one third part, by their keeping
money dead in their hands, which they have received
by fines. This Bill may revive lands again, and set
the poor on work.
Sir Thomas Mompesson.] Would rather give Birch half
his land, by Act of Parliament, than have this compulsory Clause to make him put his land to what it is
no way proper for, to his loss.
Mr Secretary Coventry.] Birch does not spend so
much of his time in that church, where those orthodox Churchmen are, as to know much of them. Before they came in, there was a standing army that helped to eat our provisions, and so rents were better paid.
Sir Thomas Lee.] Would have the Bill committed,
but so that the compulsory Clause may be left out—
Which will be ineffectual, unless 'tis for their interest
to plant, &c. 'Tis said, "there was a standing army that helped to eat, but now we have a standing army to whom our money goes, and they do nothing for it.
Mr Mallet.] We are not merry nor angry. Would not
rake up old fores (Col. Sandys) pardoned by the Act of
Oblivion. He has but one objection to the Bill, viz.
"that it spoils water and destroys fish, the hemp being
laid in it."
The Bill was ordered to be committed.
A Note was sent into the House to Sir John Hotham, sealed
viz. "Why should the forts and governments of the greatest
importance in the nation remain in the custody of men that are
either Atheists or Papists, and such as are wholly frenchified,
and for arbitrary government? And yet none of you have
hands nor hearts to complain; which to England seems strange—
Look to it—" who gave it to the Speaker, and acquainted the
House that he had a Note of a strange nature sent in to him sealed.
It was not publickly read (fn. 2) .
Sir Thomas Lee.] Finds no Order for the business of
the day, for the House to go into a Grand Committee
for Grievances; and, he believes, no Order will be entered for the future, but what shall be acceptable to
Mr Garroway.] Moves for a new Clerk, this Clerk
having several times abused us; and would have him
Sir William Hickman.] The Clerk has served you so
very often, and at this time he puts gentlemen into
Committees whom he knows to be in Lancashire.
Mr Sacheverell.] Thinks, if you let this pass, you
may as well burn all your Journals. He has been one
of the Committee for inspecting the Journals, and has
had a Report ready in his hand these four Sessions. In
the Session of 1672, the sense of the House was declared so, and entered otherwise. He moves for a new
Clerk, and that the King may be desired it. The two
first pages of that Session may much call in question the
Privilege and Right of this House.
Col. Birch.] He is for a new Clerk. He has heard
complaints of him these seven years, of these miscarriages. When Birkenhead says, "Rolls and Records,"
he tells you they are so of his knowledge, and not
one print agrees with the Rolls in matter and form.
He takes thus the law to be. If any printed Act agrees not with the Record, a person tried may appeal
to the Record, whether the law be so or not. Judge
then the danger of false entering things in our books.
The Order for the day not being entered into the Journal by
the Clerk, the consideration of Grievances was adjourned to Saturday next.
A Committee was appointed to inspect the Journal of the year
1672, and to examine and report the matter of the entry.
Sir Edward Dering.] Several rates, in the printed
book of the customs, are higher by much than in the
Record. And by the Bill now depending, to make it
Treason to levy money contrary to Law, men may be
ensnared by it.
Friday, March 2.
Lord Cavendish.] Moved to consider of the manner
of Dr Cary's commitment to the Tower by the Lords,
(fn. 3) . And produced a copy of the Lords Order of commitment (fn. 4) .
Sir Thomas Clarges.] Moves that a Committee may
be appointed to search the Lords Journal, to state
the matter of fact; the King having particularly recommended it to the Lords care, not to occasion any
difference between them and the Commons.
Mr Secretary Coventry.] Dr Cary is committed for
bringing a libel to the press, which maintains "that you
sit wrongfully, and have no right to sit as a Parliament." Whether this be not cognizable by the Lords,
as well as you, is the Question. He has refused to
give any satisfaction to the Lords from whom he had
the libel, and so they have committed him for libelling them, as you would have had cognizance, if he
had violated or struck any Lord or Member.
Sir Thomas Lee.] He fears that the Lords will encroach precedents upon you; possibly the thing moved
for is too early. But crimes against the Government
are not to be immediately punished in Parliament; for
the Law is open.
Mr Sacheverell.] For the seasonableness of the Motion he will not speak, but the thing being come before you, the matter is, how to get off from it.
21 and 22 R. II. A Statute was made to rule that
power, just as the Lords do now exercise it, to prevent taking off Commoners Heads at their pleasure.
This was the ground of all your first difference with
the Lords; they taking a cause originally before
them. If the power of the Lords be to examine a
Commoner against himself, and to condemn him for
not answering, he knows not what condition we all are
in. He would therefore have the matter looked into,
and if it appear to be as 'tis represented, would proceed in it; and moves for some persons to be appointed to search the Lords Journal.
Lord Cavendish.] He brought this business into the
House, not to hinder the business of the day, but for
the information of the House only.
Col. Birch.] Would go on to the business of the day,
and enquire into this to-morrow. He knows not what
to say to the matter, but would have no difference
with the Lords, nor would give up our rights, in silently putting up this their imprisonment of a Commoner, as an original cause.
Sir John Ernly.] He has a paper in his hand, which
he is ashamed of, sent to the Lord Mayor.—He was
Mr Secretary Coventry.] To Order. If this House,
and the Lords House, can find no way to punish
such seditious libeliers, you may be pulled out of
your Chair; and as they brought the late King
to the block, at this rate they may do this also. And
moves to proceed no farther in this thing, and the
Lords punishment of Dr Cary is just.
Mr Williams.] He hears this thing of the Lords
commitment of Cary justified from the Bar, before we
know what it is. Moves to have Ernly's paper read.
Sir William Coventry.] He sees you are yet raw in
this business. But he would not meddle with the
Lords 'till you are well informed what you may, and
what you may not do. He was ever for a moderate
course with the Lords. We are told how terrible the
meddling with this matter might be, but he knows
not the terror of it in the enquiry. Would have you
proceed to the business of the day, and inform yourfelves better in this matter.
Mr Powle.] He has seen a copy of this Order from
the Lords, for the commitment of Dr Cary. It seems
a matter of that weight, that, at least, as 'tis put, it
deserves mature consideration. If this be so, no Commoner of England but is at the Lords mercy—This
came not criminally yet before the Lords; but they
take it originally. Whether Dr Cary be criminal is not
the Question; but the manner of his condemnation.
What a man says against the government in particular
is not cognizable, in the Lords House, any more than
in another place. This is a crime no more particularly affixed to the Lords than to this House. The
Lords examine him, and require him to accuse himself, or some body else. By this means, any thing in
the King's Bench may be proceeded upon in the Lords
House. In this he would show that we are only upon
the defensive part, and that we seek no occasion of difference with the Lords. 'Tis our desire that the precedent of 21 R.II. may be prevented. This is so
tender a point, that he would not let it go without a
day to consider it farther; and would not have the
world think the House so cold in so great a matter.
He would appoint to-morrow to consider it farther.
Mr Sawyer.] Shall any Member here undertake to
know what the Lords do? You have only the bare information of this matter before you of one Member of
this House, and no more.—He's much afraid to give
countenance to things of this nature. One book
now abroad concerns us. It calls us "traytors and
rebels for meeting as a Parliament," and either House
may enquire into such incendiaries. You passed the same
sentence upon Mr Howard, the last Session; he would
not say he did or did not write the letter, and you
took it pro confesso, and committed him to the Tower
(fn. 5) .
He would have this matter regularly before you, before you proceed any farther, and would now go to
the Order of the day.
Lord Cavendish.] If this be a crime against the government, as is alleged, he would know whether the
Lords can judge it without a Jury.
Mr Sawyer.] Invading our Privileges is invading the
government, and such matters may be tried in either
House, and this matter more especially in the Lords
House. Other Courts may be timorous. In point of
Law you punish no man but as he offends against the
Sir William Coventry.] He will not contend matter
of Law with Sawyer, but would enter his claim, that
we do not take ourselves to be part of the government, for then the government is no monarchy. We
are only a part of the legislature; and would enter
his claim against any such doctrine to be delivered here.
Mr Sawyer.] Explains himself. He acknowledges
judgment and legislature, &c.
Sir Wm Coventry.] He takes the government to be as
much, and more, the ministerial part, as the legislature.
The Speaker.] No cognizance can be taken of the
Lords proceedings, unless they come regularly before
you. 'Tis the first instance of this kind. You judge
them in their judicature of what is not before you.
You may do it to any part of their judicature, as well
as this. You may else raise what you cannot lay.
But he is always for the Privilege of this House.
Sir Thomas Lee.] He remembers one man (Fitton)
punished by the Lords for making application to this
House (fn. 6) . 'Tis a proper and regular way, and this
matter may be brought before you by information of
a Member, as well as by petition from the party
grieved. The Question is not about the crime, but
whether Dr Cary be regularly brought to punishment.
Here a man is committed without impeachment; you are
the Jury, and all men ought to be tried per pares. He
thinks this properly represented to you, and would
farther consider of it.
Mr Harwood.] The Long Robe may be mistaken
(Sawyer). But he that speaks so often may be, and
was, in matter of law, till Coventry set him right.
Sir Henry Goodrick.] In this matter we are under so
great a restraint, that he knows not how we shall deliver
ourselves. The eyes and prayers of the country are
that we may have no difference with the Lords. But
when he considers the cries of the people, and the
King's advice to us, in his Speech, not to entertain differences with the Lords, and that 'tis not a time of
day to do it, they that press this, he declares, are
no friends to the good of the nation—Explains what
he has said, and will make it good. But submits it to
the judgment of the House, and farther, whoever proceeds so is no friend to the nation. He has thought
of it, and hopes to make it good. If the House
should have a Conference with the Lords about this
matter, you would have it come regularly before you—
He means a Conference upon the ground of the precedent Debate.
Lord Cavendish.] Is sorry to hear so great a reflection
from Goodrick upon all gentlemen concerned in this
Debate, and upon himself who brought the Debate in.
No gentlemen that debated this but are as good
"friends to the nation," and would not proceed, as
little as Goodrick, to a difference with the Lords; and
must say, That from Goodrick was an indiscreet expression.— He was taken down to Order.
Col. Birch.] By Order of the House, the words
whereby Lord Cavendish was offended must be written
down, and asserted. Thinks that Goodrick said, "they
that press this business are no friends to the nation."
Sir George Downing.] Citing Birch for reflecting upon
the whole Clergy of England, yesterday. ("Their having
money dead in their bands, &c." see p. 164,) was taken
down to Order by
Sir Thomas Lee.] Gentlemen that have been Long
Parliament-men, and yet make digressions to what was
Sir Philip Harcourt
(fn. 7) .] The business is of a great nature, and he would have you, Mr Speaker, declare, by
Order, whether the words are not to be asserted, and
written down, before any explanation be admitted of
Mr Garroway.] Goodrick owned his words, and
brought them to his own explanation. Your Order is,
"those words that gave exception ought to be written
down," and you debate whether those words were
said, or not. But no gentleman can be hindered from
the thing being debated to-morrow, or any other time.
He believes Goodrick will so explain himself as to give
Serjeant Maynard.] He apprehends the words were
very bad, but let them be what they will, if you go
to censure the person for the words, they must be
written down. 'Twas his own case twice, long ago,
but he had liberty first to explain himself—For a man
may sometimes outgo himself, and it may be every
Sir Henry Goodrick.] He is ready to give satisfaction
to the House, and every particular Member. He intended no reflection upon any gentleman. His words
were: "He that promoted this difference betwixt
the Lords and us was an enemy to the nation." That
was his intention, whatever were his words.
Sir Thomas Meres.] He doubts that the words
were otherwise, but would have them accepted as the
gentleman says he intended them. He would have us
all bear with one another. We have always borne with
the interpretation of the man that spoke the words,
and without doubt, "he is no friend to the nation,
that promotes differences between the Lords and us."
But to go on, he believes that Lord Cavendish brings
the Order for Dr Cary's commitment, by the Lords,
regularly before you; 'tis by the very same method
as you went in Sir John Fagg's case. You were informed of it by a Member then, and no otherwise,
and the farther consideration thereof was adjourned
till Monday. To-morrow is the day appointed to consider of Grievances; and this is the greatest. He will
not speak upon this Order 'till it is well searched into.
No man here, he believes, values Dr Cary in prison,
neither the man nor the punishment; but the manner of
laying the punishment is what we have reason to except
against. This is not the Privilege of a particular
Lord Cavendish.] Called Meres to Order, viz. That
Goodrick meant particularly what he said to reflect
upon himself, and not generally speaking.
Sir William Coventry.] What he heard Goodrick speak
was, "That they are no friends to the nation that
promote a difference between the Lords and us." We
have great reason, in these cases, to give grains of allowance to one another. In ancient times but a few
persons spoke in the House, and their speeches were
ready penned. The powder and shot was ready made
up in cartridges; ready cut and dried, and a man
had then time to think; but now we speak on a sudden, and therefore would have some grains of allowance given.
(fn. 8) .] He thinks that Goodrick's words
particularly reflected upon Lord Cavendish
(fn. 9) and
would have them set down.
Sir Henry Goodrick.] He should speak much against
both his obligations and judgment, if he intended
Lord Cavendish, in what he said, or any other gentleman, in particular.
Sir Thomas Meres.] He is glad that an end is made of
this matter, as to Lord Cavendish, who, he thinks, has
satisfaction from Goodrick. But he would consider the
manner of this judgment (upon Dr Cary) of the Lords,
on a Commoner. We ought to have as great and as
good a Privilege as the Lords, but would not go on
this, without being extremely clear, and perhaps
we may find out more Privilege than we know of al
ready. Will press no Question, but that the matter
stands fair for another consideration.
Serjeant Maynard.] If there be public breaches on
the liberty of the people, it is not strange to enquire
into them. He fears this commitment of Dr Cary has
raised more dust than can be laid. He must come into a Court where he may be indicted, and no man
must be accused but by writ "from some of the King's
Courts." 'Twill be one Question, Whether Dr Cary
has offended before the Parliament sat, or since; in
or out of Parliament? If a man be brought here for
words spoken against this House, will not you commit
him? If a man contemns any Court, that Court may
fine any man. If the matter will hold you may go on,
else 'tis a very ill thing to contend in this matter. If
he be committed for contempt of an Order, see what
it is; and then consider whether you will go through
Mr Garroway.] If Dr Cary be committed for contempt indefinite, and we desire to know the cause
from the Lords, and they tell you 'tis for a breach of
their Privilege, then there's an end of it. The King,
in what he said of avoiding controversy with the Lords,
never intended thereby to cut you off from your just
Privileges. No man will think so irreverently of the
King. And you, Mr Speaker, may go out of the
Chair, without any Question, in this matter, and he
will move it again when we are better informed.
The Speaker left the Chair, and Sir Richard Temple took it
for the Grand Committee for raising the 600,000l. for which
brandy, and French linnen were proposed. 'Twas privately
murmured "that there was no necessity for raising this 600,000l.
but because 199 voted it. Necessitas necessitatis, necessitas necessitata."
Mr Secretary Coventry.] Asserts that nothing you
have laid a tax upon, either Commodities, or Law,
&c. ever answered two thirds of the value intended.
He hears the unlimited demand in the King's Speech
objected to. The King has commanded him to tell
the Members of this House, "that he desires the
continuation of the Excise but for three years; his
charge for the interest of the bankers money, and that
which the rebellion in Virginia has occasioned him, he
desires may be left to the consideration of the House,
whether they will proceed in it now, or at another
time of the Session. He presses nothing but what is
necessary for the present affairs, and he thinks this
600,000l. will have the most certainty in being raised
by an eighteen months assessment."
Sir Thomas Meres.] He takes Coventry's Speech to
be a Message from the King, but would know, whether he will press for no more, this Session, than the
Mr Sec. Coventry.] To continue only the additional
duty upon the Excise for three years, and the 600,000l.
Sir Thomas Meres.] He thinks our lands can bear
but half this sum, but where shall the other 300,000l.
be raised? God help England, if that sum cannot be
any way raised but by Land Tax, which was never
made for building ships! He foresees war, and knows
not whether we may be the aggressors, or not; and
would save land for that occasion. If you would have
money where 'tis not, you'll pull mens skins off, and
put them into jails, and more he dares scarce think
of. Abroad they hear what we do in this House, and,
land so loaden, what will they say? That our land is full
charged; and they will take their measures accordingly. One hundred sail of ships are taken by the French,
and we send Ambassador after Ambassador, and they
give us promise after promise, and they keep our ships,
and they lose their voyage, and half their wares is spoiled, and no remedy to be had. Land is our sheet-anchor, and the last thing to be taxed. He would not
show the nakedness of his mother, England—But you
must know our poverty at last; but he allows there's
reason for 600,000l. because 'tis in order to provide
stores, and furnishing thirty ships. But to this, in
Land Tax, would give not above 300,000l. He cannot go along with you for any more.
Col. Birch.] He did never say that the imposition
upon foreign linnen would raise this sum. This
touches him, before all the Commons of England, that
he intended not to raise this sum. Linnen, Callico,
Brandy, and Wine was proposed. It has been thought
the Wine would have tasted of the money, (the imposition upon it.) But still 'tis swallowed down; men
must have it. If a man be habituated to drink a quart
in a morning, he will sell his own estate twice over,
and mine too, but he will have it, if he can. This
money, the French have of us for Wine and Linnen, &c.
that a million, would raise an Army. He has drank
Port Wine, and would let that come in with little
load upon it at the Custom-house. He pleads for your
safety, and to weaken your enemy. Here is city against city. (London and Westminster.) A city without
a city. London desires ease in their taxes. In London,
houses that formerly let for fifty pounds a year are
now fallen to fourteen pounds. They can sooner let
forty houses in the new city than five in London, and
the rent well paid too. And there is above fifteen
times as much upon London in taxes, as upon this
new city. Would know a reason why now a Land Tax?
Unless we would lay the nation low by it. Why those
new buildings should not pay 100,000l. then, he
knows not. He does not believe the nation able to
pay it. Tenants will either throw up your land, or
you must take corn for rent, and this vote will sink
land two years value. If you'll not put the whole
Tax, put at least half of it upon some of the ways
he has proposed, and spare land.
Mr Waller.] Hears building of ships spoken of, before our neighbours are at leisure to hinder us. And
'tis said "to be more for your honour not to lay this
money now upon Land Tax, but to reserve that for the
last." But our neighbours will think us in earnest if
we go by Land Tax, and they observe us. Will you
try an experiment on other things, now the nation is
in danger? Queen Elizabeth cared not at what charge
she ruined her neighbours; and now the King of
France has burnt all the English cloth, &c. He has
seen money denied here in former Parliaments, and
the nation ruined by it.
Mr Garroway.] Some of Birch's arguments, as Callico, will require Debate, concerning the East India
Company—And that thereby we may be charged in
what we buy, and by consequence 'twill be a Tax upon our Lands. Still he is troubled for the additional
duty of the Excise, given to pay debts, or other extraordinary occasions, and so 'tis brought into a Revenue, and continued to perpetuity, which he is troubled at. He will give his vote for Land Tax, to be the
freer to give his negative to the Excise.
Mr Powle.] Suppose you lay Land Tax, and Excise,
both at a time. Land will be charged full as much
as it can bear. Fines that are imposed upon persons
in Courts, are with a salvo contenemento. So should
Taxes be. If you charge land so much before hand,
what will you have to charge certainly upon an emergency? At Rome anciently, and now at Venice, the
Treasury of St Mark is not to be touched but upon
extraordinary occasions. He takes this to be so of
Land Tax. And fifteenths, and tenths, were formerly
in nature of Land Tax on every county and town,
and by our ancestors very carefully granted. Suppose
we should have an invasion, or foreign war, which way
shall we turn to defend ourselves? He sees not how
this can be easily answered. 'Tis possible to raise
money, in time of peace, upon trade, and not possible
in time of war. And 'tis to no purpose to think we
have safety in building ships, unless you keep something untouched, and not to lie open these eighteen
months, loaded with Land Tax and Excise. He would
have satisfaction in this.
Mr William Harbord.] He remembers that the late
(fn. 10) , a man of great worth and honour,
and true English principles, in discourse with him about the French growth, said "Will. If you will defend
me against the French at Whitehall, I'll defend you against the King of France." Nothing can support the
nation, but trust betwixt the King and his people.
Therefore he would absolutely trust the King in this;
and he is for a Land Tax.
Sir William Coventry.] He thinks not that the King
of France will put a stop upon his linnen and wine,
if we were at war with him. 'Twill put his people in
a mutiny. 'Tis better for us to deal with him now,
whilst he has other business upon his hands—Unless
you make his cloth dearer to other men than yours,
you'll never nurse up your own manufacture. Wool
was formerly with us at forty shillings a todd; 'tis
now not nine shillings. This will turn all land into
tillage, and then spoil the land for wool again. The
landlord must stay for his money, till the tenant can
get better markets, but the Tax-gatherer must be paid
at his time.
On a division of the Committee, whether this 600,000 l. &c.
should be raised by Land Tax, &c. it was carried in the affirmative, 214 to 165. [And agreed to by the House.]
Saturday, March 3.
Sir Harbottle Grimstone, Master of the Rolls.] Moved
that he might have leave to bring in a Bill for repeal
of the Statute, &c. of wages for Knights and Burgesses of Parliament, and desired it might be in particular for Colchester, the place he serves for. For a
Writ had gone down from Sir John Shaw, (his fellow
Burgess) to receive his wages for service done in Parliament (fn. 11) .
Mr Williams.] The Statute of Limitations will cut
off all the Wages, but of the last six years. He is against removing old Land Marks—What's an evidence
betwixt man and man, electors and elected, he would
not remove. He is not for imposing any thing upon
Corporations; he will trust his own Corporation, but
not every little Borough. The Wages will not be due
for a whole year, but for the days only that we sit here.
He would trust the generosity of the Members, in this
of their Wages, and not have a Bill for it. He has
already released his Wages.
Mr Powle.] The Statute of Limitations cuts not off
a debt, but from six years after 'tis due; and this is
not due till the Parliament is ended, and therefore
not cut off by that Statute. Williams says, "That
Wages are not due but for the days you sit here."
But for those that come from Cumberland, and such
remote places, they have had sometimes fourteen
days allowed them, and to all the Members, morando, redeundo, eundo. And if Wages be demanded
accordingly, it will ruin many poor Boroughs. We
are now estimated to have sat in this Parliament 3000
days, which will be 600 l. and the Question is, whether Wages are not due in Prorogations, as well as Adjournments. For the ill use that may be made of this,
when this Parliament is at an end, he would have Wages
cut off. For debts, when they are grown old, are
very heavy when paid, and consider how we load them
now by this Tax we have granted. But he would have
this discharge of Wages for no more than what is already incurred, and not forward.
Mr Sawyer.] You have been offered the Statute
of Limitations. That of Wages is not an Action,
but in the nature of a judicial Writ, unto which the
Statute of Limitation is not to be pleaded, being matter of Record. Some Wages have been already paid,
and some persons are but lately come in. But he looks
upon it for the honour of the House, that, where
Wages have not been received, we may imitate the
Statute of Limitations—Excepting the two last years.
Mr Boscawen.] He knows not why Sawyer, that has
been here but two years, should give away his Wages
that has been here sixteen years. 'Tis generally promised at Elections, in Boroughs, to serve freely, and
why an Act should not be to confirm those promises,
he knows not. He thinks it worthy your consideration to put the Boroughs out of fear. For hereafter
they will chuse their own Burgesses, blue aprons, and
gentlemen no more.
Mr Williams.] He offered only the Statute of Limitations. Sawyer said, "That the Writ for Wages is a
judicial Writ, in nature of an execution;" but he is
mistaken. 'Tis a distringas at Common Law. If a
Member be absent the whole Session, he cannot bring
his Writ of Wages; unless he be here upon Record,
which supposes his presence here—'Tis not in the nature of an execution.
Lord Cavendish.] Interrupted him, and desired the
Speaker to declare both Sawyer and Williams to be in the
Mr Sawyer.] No averment can be against a Record,
and this is in the nature of a Record.
Mr Finch.] He is not for this Bill, though thus magnified to you. All Wages are limited to eundo, morando, redeundo, and expressly limited by the Writ to
levy it. By 6 H. VIII. "No person that departs
from Parliament without leave of the Speaker and
House, entered first into the Journal, shall have his
Wages." And Prynne's Register of Writs goes so far as
to prove attendance here every day—But by this Bill
you take away from every gentleman an opportunity
of obliging his Corporation— Therefore he is against
Mr Waller.] A tacit innovation this Bill is upon us.
Originally the Boroughs were able to pay Wages to
their Parliament-men, &c.
Sir William Thompson.] Intimated, that the City of
London paid Wages formerly. He has received no
Wages, though the City is able to pay them.
Mr Love.] He never received any Wages from the
City, nor demanded any, because he thinks he never
deserved any at their hands.
Mr Swynfin, upon Mr May's Motion for releases of
Wages to the Boroughs under our Hands and Seals, said.]
He knows not how it can be done to Counties, or Boroughs, nor how they are capable of receiving such
releases. 'Twill best show the inclinations of such
gentlemen to release them, by giving his consent to
a Bill for taking them away.
A Bill was ordered to be brought in accordingly.