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ROYAL FISHING REVIVED,
Wherein is demonstrated, from what Causes the Dutch have upon the Matter in
grossed the Fishing Trade in his Majesty's Seas, wherein the Principles of all the Trades they drive in the World are chiefly founded : As also from what Causes the English have lost the Fishing Trade, to the Endangering the small Remainder of the Trudes they yet enjoy. Together with Expedients by which the Fishing Trade may be redeemed by the English; and Proposals for Carryins on so great a Work, Humbly offered to the Consideration of the King and Parliagent.
London: Printed by Thomas Ratcliffe for the Author, 1670. Quario, containing
Here we are presented with the State of the Fishery in the British Seas, when King
Charles II. seemed inclined to maintain the Right of his Subjects, and to prolect them in the Employment of that valuable Branch of Trade. It is but short, but it methodically and rationally gives us the Advantages which the Datch gain hy that Trade, with the Reason of those Advantages: The Hinderances, which obstruct the English in the Prosecution thereof: The Means whereby the English may redeein the Fishing Trade: And so concludes with Proposals for carrying on this great Work.
ADVANTAGES the Dutch have in the fishing trade, with the
viz 1. Multitudes of men, above any other nation.
2. Cheapness of building all sorts of ships for this trade, above any other place.
3. Their convenient building ships for this trade, above any other place.
4. Greatness of vent in foreign trade for all sorts of commodi. ties, returned in barter for their fish, above any other place.
5. Their excellency in packing and curiog all sorts of fish (ex. cept red-herrings) above any other place.
First, Their multitudes of mariners and fishermen proceed not from the conveniency of their coasts, for all the fish they take are generally upon the coasts of England, Scotland, and the Orcades; and so might be more conveniently caught by us: Nor from the conveniency of their harbours, ours in number and excellency far exceeding theirs : But from the freedom that they give people of all nations, above any other place; whereby those people enjoying what they desire, and being kept in constant employment, are no way subject to sedition or murmur against the state; to the in. comparable strengthening as well as in riching thereof.
Secondly, The cheapness of their building ships for this trade proceeds : 1. From the great quantities and cheapiness of timber they have down the Rhine and Maeze, as also out of Norway, and the Baltick Sea, in return of the fish and other commodities vented there by them. 2. Cheapness of pitch, tar, hemp, and iron, &c. above any other place, which are in great measures returned upon the product of their fish. 3. Lowness for interest of money, above any other place.
Thirdly, Their convenient building of ships for this trade, is from the encouragement and freedom they give to all sorts of buil. ders of all nations, whereby ingenuity and industry is improved, as also the builders, above any other place.
Fourthly, The greatness of vent of all sorts of commodities, re. turned in product of the fish, is from the lowness of their customs for the same, and lowness of interest money ; conveniency and cheapness of shipping, above any other place.
Fifthly, The excellency and reputation of curing and packing their fish, proceeds from the careful inspection of the States of the United Netherlands, above any other place; and their curing on ship-board, and then repacking.
These advantages have been in process of time so well improved by the Dutch, that they have not only gained to themselves almost the sole fishing in his majesty's seas; but principally upon this account have very near beat us out of all our other most profitable trades in all parts of the world. Nor have the English any reason to hope to retain the residue of those trades, which they yet enjoy, unless they may be relieved in the fishing trade, from these disad. vantages and inconveniences following ; which are,
First, Scarcity of people : Although the coast of England, with a limitation of five miles from it, will maintain more people than all the United Netherlands.
Secondly, Dearness of building ships for this trade; so that a Dutch ship, of equal dimension, is built for half the price.
Thirdly, Inconvenient building of shipping ; so as a Dutch ship, of equal bigness, is sailed with half the hands.
Fourthly, Want of vent for all sorts of commodities, returned in barter for the fish in foreign trade.
Fifthly, The negligent and corrupt curing of fish by the English (except red-herrings) whereby their reputation is far less than those that are cured by the Dutch.
First, Scarcity of people upon the coast of England, is occasi. oned by our peopling the American plantations, the re-peopling Ireland, since the great massacre there, the late great plague in the year 1665, and the law against naturalisation, which permits no foreigner to partake equal freedom with the English in this trade; and corporations, which restrain the freedom of this trade, to the very few freemen of them.
Secondly, Dearness of shipping for this trade proceeds: 1. From the dearness and scarcity of timber in England. 2. From the act of navigation, which not only restraiós the importation of timber,
pitch, tar, hemp, and iron, to these dear built ships, and the ships of the natives of the places, from whence they are had, whether they have ships or not, but also it gives freedom to the Dutch to import all sorts of manufactories made of these growths, which they acquire for half the price the English can; whereby the English nation have wholly lost the trade for fitting up ships, for this, or any other trade.
Thirdly, The inconvenient building of ships for this trade, is from restraining the building of ships to the English only, who are very few, and know no other way.
Fourthly, The want of vent for all sorts of commodities, returned in barter for fish, proceeds : 1. From the greatness of the customs upon those commodities, which are twenty times more than in the United Netherlands. 2. The dearness of the ships in which they must be vented. 3. The inconveniency of those ships, compared with the Dutch, for any foreign trade with those commodities. 4. The height of interest of money here in England, above the United Netherlands ; so as, besides the height of cus. toms, those ships of the English being twice so dear, and sailed with double the hands that those of the United Netherlands are, and paying above one third interest more, the English merchant is here necessarily incumbent to a three-fold charge, more than the Dutch merchant.
Fifthly, The negligent and corrupt curing of fish, caught by the English, proceeds from thc want of a constant council of trade, which may inspect and govern the fishing-trade. The Expedients whereby the English may redeem the Fish
ing-Trade. First, For a supply of men, upon all occasions, to carry on this great work, it is proposed, that it may be free for all sorts of foreigners to partake and enjoy equal freedom, with the natural subjects of England, in their persons and estates, in the fishing-trade ; and that all possible security and encouragement be given to all sorts of foreigners who shall assist us therein.
Secondly, That all restraints by the freedom of corporations be taken away, and no person excluded in this trade.
Thirdly, That all sorts of begging persons, and all other poor people (not sick, or impotent) may be employed therein.
Fourthly, That all peoplc, condemned for less crimes than blood, he compelled to redeem their crimes, and in some measure to make compensation by extraordinary labour in this trade.
Fifthly, That all persons in prison for debt, and not able to pay, may be employed therein.
Sixthly, That the act of navigation be repealed, whereby all sorts of foreign ships may be employed in this trade: And that it be free to import pitch, tar, hemp, iron, and timber, whereby the English may be enabled to employ all those bands in fitting up ships for this trade, as well as the Dutch.
Seventhly, That all customs for commodities, returned for the fish, vented in foreign parts, be taken off, and an equal excise to be imposed in lieu thereof; so that, as multitudes and concourse of people increase, and by consequence a greater consumption, his majesty's revenue will thereby be proportionably increased, with. out any prejudice to this trade.
Eighthly, That the statute, de Donis Conditionalibus, may stand in force, so that fines shall be no bar to the heirs in tail, nor recoveries to those in remainder; whereby a stock, as well in this trade as others, of all those monies, which are spent in buying and mortgaging land, will generate into a common bank of trade; and those numerous companies of other bankers, usurers, scriveners, and sollicitors, will be necessitated to seek better means of living, and thereby the vanity of luxurious persons, restrained to the bounds of their estates : As also the interest of money will become as low here, as in the United Netherlands.
Ninthly, Yet, for encouraging foreigners to inhabit and plant, as well as trade with us, it may be lawful for all foreigners to purchase lands here, to them and their heirs; whereby the nation would be inriched as well as peopled; and whereby vast sums of money, which are now employed by the Dutch at interest, to the impoverishing the nation, might be converted to the inriching of it.
Tenthly, That all possible encouragement be given as well to foreigners as natives, for building ships for this trade, in Ireland, Virginia, and New England.
Eleventhly, That a constant council of trade be erected by parliament, which may inspect this trade; and during the intervals, with his majesty's approbation, may make by-laws until the next session of parliament.
Proposals for carrying on this great Work. First, That commissioners be' impowered by act of parliament, to enquire into all abuses and deceits in the management and government of hospitals, and of all concealments and mis-conversions of any part of the revenues thereof; and that care be taken for the future to improve the revenues of the said hospitals to the best advantage; and that all such monies, concealed or mis-em. ployed, together with the improvements and overplus (over and above what shall be necessarily laid out for the maintenance and repairs of the said hospitals, &c.) may be brought into his majes. ty's bank for carrying on the royal fishing.
Secondly, That the said commissioners enquire what sums of monies at any time have been given to charitable uses and are cun. cealed, or have been mis-employed by any persons to whose trust the same were committed: And that all such monies may be brought into the bank, for carrying on the royal fishing.
Thirdly, That one year's value of the annual assessments to the poor, may be advanced by the respective parishes of England, to be employed in buying and building convenient houses, and for a stock in setting the poor at work, to carry on the royal fishing :
By means whereof the charge of maintaining the poor, in all pa. rishes, will proportionally lessen, to the universal easement and benefit of the whole nationa
Fourthly, That some reasons for altering or repealing the statute of 43 Elis. c. 2. intituled, Who shall be Overseers for the Poor, their Office, Duty, and Accounts, may be considered, for the benefit of the royal fishing.
Fifthly, That the children of all lazy and idle persons, living upon forests, wastes, and chaces, may be employed in the royal fishing, and that those wastes may be improved for a publick good, and the revenue arising thereby employed, for carrying on the royal fishing.
Sixthly, That all victuallers, higlers, badgers, &c. formerly li. censed by mayors and justices of the peace, &c. may be hereafter licensed by commissioners in powered by act of parliament, and the fees and profits, arising thereby, be likewise employed for car. rying on the royal fishing.
Seventhly, Whereas there was obtained, beyond sea, a grant from his majesty for thirty-one years, of the home-vent of coals from the river of Tyne, upon pretence of five-hundred pounds fine, and 1838 pounds 12 shilling annual rent, when as the same might have been leased out by his majesty for near 10000 pounds, per annum, if his majesty had been rightly informed of the value thereof; wherefore, it is proposed, that, by his majesty's permission, the said grant may be vacated in parliament; and his majesty be at liberty to let it for the best advantage. And that his majesty will be graciously pleased, that the improvement of the rent thereof may go towards the support of the royal fishing.
Eighthly, That like duties may be imposed upon the vent of coals from Sunderland, as are at Newcastle, to be employed in the royal fishing.
Ninthly, That all such sum or sums of money, which since his majesty's restoration have been raised and collected upon subscriptions and benevolences for the use of the fishery, and do still remain in the hands of the collectors, treasurers, and others, who ought to account for the same, may be forth with reduced into his majesty's bank, for carrying on the royal fishing.
Tenthly, That his majesty will be graciously pleased to grant, that all discoveries within his majesty's gist, not yet discovered nor granted away by his majesty (after a reasonable and fitting reward secured to the discoverer or discoverers out of the same) shall go towards the support of the royal fishing.
Eleventhly, That all houses built upon new foundations within the city and suburbs of London, since the year 1657, except such houses as have been consumed by fire, may pay a fine to the value of one year's rent, to be employed towards the carrying on the royal fishing.
Twelfthly, That his majesty will be plcased to grant, that all