C R
‘DIEV ET MON DROIT’‘HONI SOIT QVI MAL Y PENSE’


By the King.
A PROCLAMATION For the prevention of Frauds and Abuses in the payment of Excise for Beer and Ale.

CHARLES R.

WHereas by several late Acts of Parliament made for the setling of Our Revenue, cer­tain Rates, Duties, and Charges of Excise are granted unto Vs upon Beer, Ale, and other the Liquors in the said Acts mentioned; For the better improvement where­of, and to the end the same may be the more equally Assessed and Levied, and Our Re­venue thereby reduced to the more certainty, We did lately give Order that the same should be let to Farm according to the limitations and directions of the said Acts; which accordingly is done, so as the said Duties and Charges of Excise in all or most of the Counties and Cities of this Our Kingdom, are now let to Farm for the Term of Three years: And whereas We are given to understand, that divers Brewers, and other persons concerned in the payment of the said Duties, in or about the Cities of London and Westminster, and other places of this Our Kingdom, which We may hope is not so much out of disaffection to Our Go­vernment, as for making to themselves unjust gain, by defrauding Vs, and Our said Farmers of their just Duties, have set up, and do daily make use of private and concealed Tuns, Backs, and other Brew­ing-Vessels, to which the Gagers who are appointed by the said Acts of Parliament to take account of their Beer and Ale, can have no access; And by divers other Frauds and Concealments, do practise and go about to diminish Our said Revenue, and also to prejudice and under-sell such their fellow-Traders as do duely conform to the Acts of Parliament aforesaid. And whereas since the letting of the said [Page] Excise to Farm, the said Brewers, to prevent the discovery of the true quantity and quality of the Beer and Ale made by them, do deny entrance into their Brewhouses to the said Gagers, contrary to the said Acts of Parliament, and also to their former usage of admitting the said Gagers to search as well by night as by day; the said Brewers in the mean time Brewing also, and Cleansing likewise oftentimes on Sundaies, to the great dishonour of Christianity, and profanation of the Lords day; and do also oppose and discourage the said Gagers in their Offices, not only by reviling language, but also by force of arms and otherwise, divers of them having lately been assaulted, beaten and wounded in the execution of their Duty in that be­half, to the breach of Our Peace, and manifest contempt of Our Authority. And whereas divers Consta­bles and other Officers, upon the request of the said Gagers, have refused to give them such assistance in their Services, as by the said Acts of Excise they ought to give them: We therefore minding the speedy reformation of the said abuses, and the maintaining and upholding of Our said Revenue by all such just and lawful ways and means as are appointed by the said Acts of Parliament; And to the end that Our Far­mers of the said Duties in the said respective Counties and Cities may be the better enabled to Levy and Raise the same without opposition or disturbance, and consequently to satisfie and pay their respective Farm-Rents reserved and payable unto Vs: We have thought fit, and do hereby publish and declare, That We expect a ready and chearful obedience to be given by all persons concerned in the payment of the said Rates and Duties according to the said Acts of Parliament, and that We intend to proceed with all seve­rity and rigour against all such common Brewers, Victuallers, and other persons whatsoever concerned in the payment of the said Duties, as shall be found to have erected, set up, or used any such private or concealed Tuns, Backs, or other Vessels, as aforesaid, for the Brewing or Making of any Beer or Ale, or other the Liquors Exciseable, or that shall Brew, Cleanse, or dispose of any Beer or Ale, or other the Liquors aforesaid on Sundaies, or that at any time hereafter shall refuse or delay to permit such Gager or Gagers as are or shall be appointed in that behalf, to enter and take account of such Beer and Ale, and other the Liquors aforesaid, or that shall use or offer any force, violence, or oppo­sition to any such Gager or Gagers, or shall use any railing or reviling speeches, whereby to terrifie or affright him or them from the execution of his or their Duty; And that all person and persons what­soever who shall suffer any such private Tuns or other Vessels to be erected, set up, or used in or about his or their house or houses, by, or for any such common Brewer, or that shall attempt or endeavour by any of the said abuses, ways and means to diminish Our said Revenue, shall be taken and deemed as persons disaffected to Our Government, disturbers of Our Peace, and contemners of Our Royal Authority, and of the said Acts of Parliament, and shall be proceeded against accordingly. And We do hereby strictly Charge and Require all Iustices of Peace, and others to whom the Hearing, Ad­judging and Determining of or concerning any Forfeitures or Offences made and committed against the said Acts of Excise, is intrusted, That upon any Complaint or Information exhibited and brought before them touching any such Forfeiture or Offence, they do forthwith proceed against the Offenders, as in and by the said Acts is directed, as they will answer the contrary at their perils.

And We do further straitly Charge and Command all Constables, Headboroughs, Tything-men, and other Officers, That from time to time (upon request of any of the said Farmer or Farmers, or of their Deputies, Gagers and Officers constituted under their respective hands and Seals) they be [Page] aiding and assisting unto them and every of them respectively, as well in demanding and making entrance in the night-time according to the said Acts of Parliament (if need be) into any Brewhouse, or other place belonging to, or used by any common Brewer, or other person concerned in the payment of the Excise aforesaid, as in keeping Our Peace, and in Publishing and Serving such General Summons, Precepts, and Warrants, as by vertue of the said Acts of Parliament from time to time Our said Farmers or any of them shall send unto them: And to the end that Our Will and Pleasure herein may be made known, We do hereby Will and Require the several and respective Sheriffs, Mayors, Bayliffs, in the several and respective Counties, Cities, and Towns-Corporate of this Our Realm, to cause this Our Proclamation to be openly Read and Published in the Market-place of every Mar­ket-Town within their several and respective Sheriffwicks and Liberties, upon some Market-day, within Fourteen days next after their receipt hereof, as they will answer the contrary at their perils.


God save the King.

London, Printed by John Bill and Christopher Barker, Printers to the Kings most Excellent Majesty, 1662.

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