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VIII. A Survey of the British Cusioms ; containing the Rates of
Merchandize as efiablished by 12 Car. II. C. 4. Ti Gco, I. c. 7. and other Statutes; with Tables of the net Duties, Drawbacks, Bounties, &c payable shereon, under all Circumstances of Importation and Exportation. Also a diffinĉt and practical Account of the several Branches of the Revenue called the Customs. With an Appendix, containing an Abftract of all the Laws now in Force relative to the Cufioms. The whole continued to the End of the Seffion of 9 Geo. III. By Samuel Baldwin. 410. Pr. 105.6d. Nourse.
CUSTOMS or duties upon merchandize paid to the king for
goods exported or imported consist of two parts, magna and antiqua cuftuma and parva cusuma, the former of there, and which probably began with government, is payable out of our native commodities, as wool, leather, &c. the latter, which is a tribute, or toll, paid by merchants, ftrangers, and denizens, is said to have commenced in the reign of Edward I. to whoin the parliament granted three pence in the pound for all merchandizes exported and imported. But that which is granted by parliament is more properly called a subsidy. In the reign of Edward III, it was enacted, that no new customs should be levied, nor old ones increased, but by authority of parliament. But though the king cannot lay new duties on merchandizes without the consent of parliament, yet by his prerogative he may restrain merchants from trading without his royal li. cence.
The chief customs in England are those of tonnage and poundage ; the duties upon these were very early in use, and were granted by parliament for the defence of the realm, and safeguard of the seas. By the 5th of Richard II. c. 3. two Mhillings tonnage, and six-pence poundage, were granted for a term of years. On this footing, they were continued till the 3d. of Henry V, when, as lord Coke observes, they were granted for the life of that king. Edward IV. had the same for life, as also Henry VII. Henry VIII. Edward VI, Mary, Elizabeth, and James I. In the reign of Charles I. they were illegally levied, without grant from parliament during a course of fifteen years. By the 12th of Charles II. cap. 4. the subsidy of tonnage and poundage was granted by the legislature for the life of the king. James II, had also a giant for life. King William III. for years only. Till at last, by the 7th of Ann, cap. 7. half of the inward customs was granted to the queen and her heirs for ever. The other half, by i George I. cap. 12. was granted to the king and his heirs for ever. The
subsidy outwards by 9 Ann, cap. 6. was granted for thirty-two years and by 3 George I. cap.7. was made perpetual,
The work before us contains, in one large volume, tto. a complet survey of the British customs, in which Mr. Bald. win has, with great skill and industry ranged, in a very use. ful and conspicuous manner, the several rates, duties, impoits, &c. payable upon the importation of foreign and domestic goods, and likewise tabulated the drawbacks, bounties, &c. usually allowed upon their being exported. In the course of this performance, our author's chief design seems to have been an improvement upon the writings of Edgar, Crouch, Saxby, and others, who have treated upon the same subject; and, indeed, when we consider the difficulty of collating such an amazing number of articles, and tracing the various chang 3 and mutations which have happened in the laws relating to the form and manner of ascertaining the duties, so very essential to a work of this nature, we cannot help thinking this ingenious writer has perfe&ly succeeded in his attempt ; and we are farther of opinion, that the extensive appendix, containing an abstract of all the acts of parliament now in force, relating to the customs, will prove of general use, as will, in some measure appear, by the two following extracts, from p. 156, and p. 240. where it is recited, that if any keeper of an alehouse, tavern, &c. shall knowingly entertain any person who abfconds for obftructing or abuing officers, or for any offence against the laws for preventing frauds in the cuftoms, or excise, or who has made his escape after having been committed to prison for the said offence, or (Aies from justice after conviction, is to forfeit 1oo l. and be rendered incapable of having a licence for the future, provided public notice has been given of persons absconding fix days before in two fucceffive Gazettes, and in writing upon the door of the parish church where he last dwelt before his absconding.'
• If any person or persons shall export lambs or rams, alive, for the first offence, the exporter, his aiders, or abettors, are to forfeit all their goods for ever, and to suffer a year's imprisonment, without bail or inainprize, and then to have their left hands cut off in a market-town, upon a market. day, and those hands to be there publickly nailed up.'
Upon the whole, we recommend Mr. Baldwin's Survey of the British Cuftoms, as a very useful book, and worthy the perusal of merchants, traders, officers of the revenue, and all others concerned in customhouse affairs.
Vol. XXIX, May, 1770.
IX. Prayers IX. Prayers for the Use of Families. By William Enfield. 8vo.
Pr. 35. Johnson and Payne.
THIS writer has given us a useful, and in the main, a much
better coilection of prayers, than many of those, which are frequently made use, of in private families. The following thanksgiving for the birth of a child will give the judicious reader a more adequate idea of the author's manner, than any we can convey by mere description.
"We render thanks unto thee, who art the author of life, and the giver of all good things, for the blessing which thou haft been graciously plcased to bestow upon this family, by the Hirth of a child. We receive it as the gift of thy bounty; and we desire, with chearful hearts, to recommend it to thine almighty protection, and to devote it to thy fear and service. In its infant days, may it be the charge of thy providence, and may its life be precious in thy light. May its opening mind be enriched with useful knowledge, and adorned with amiable and virtuous dispositions. May its native innocence be preserved amidst the snares of the world, by the influence of wise instructions and good examples. May it long live to be happy in itself, a comfort to its parents, and useful in the world: and finally, may it be trained up for everlasting life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.'.
Would it not have been more rational and manly to have mentioned the object of this prayer as a person, than as a thing; instead of laying, in the infantine stile, “ we receive ii,' to have said, we receive him or ber, as the gift of thy bounty? This latier is always the mode of expression in our office of baptisin. Has not this sentence an air of affe&tation ? • in its infant days may it be the charge of thy providence, and may its life be precious in thy sight. Would it not have been much beticr to have said plainly and simply, “ may thy providence protect him in his infancy?"-In several of these prayers the author introduces a long and formal recognition of the several operations of the Supreme Being through the various parts of the universe, in this manner:
.. By thy word were the heavens made, and all the host of them by the breath of thy mout'. Thou didst say, Let there be light, and there was light. Thou hast placed the sun and moon in the heavens, to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day, and over the night. The heavens declare 'illy glory, and the firmament Meweth thine handy work : day unto day uttercih speech, and night unto night Theweth know. ledge : there is no speech, nor language, where their voice is
not heard. Thou makest the out goings of the morning and evening to rejoice. Thou coverest the heavens, with clouds ; and preparest the rain and the dew. Thou visitest the earth, and waterest it; thou makest it soft with showers ; thou blefest the spring thereof. Thou givest us the former and the latter rain in its season, and reservest unto us the appointed weeks of harvest. Thou crowneft the year with thy goodness, &c.
* A short and general acknowledgment of the power, wisdom, and goodness of God in the works of his creation and provi. dence, seems to be all that is necessary in acts of private devotion ; which certainly should not consist in a collection of poetical images, and sublime expressions, relative to the sun, moon, and stars.
One of the best compositions in this collection is a general prayer, compiled from the liturgy of the church of England. The author has fewn ingenuity in the arrangement of his materials.
In reviewing this work we have, perhaps, carried our ideas too high. Critics and philosophers require, that compositions of this nature should be written with great delicacy and judg. ment; that the sentiments should be just and important, the language pure and expressive, free from the least tincture of affectation, and at the same time warm and animated. But plain pious Christians will be satisfied if their manuals of de. votion are not so refined. By these then the work before us may be used with pleasure and advantage.
X. An Objection drawn from the A8 of Union, against a Review
of the Liturgy, and oiber ecclefiaftical Forms, confidered: In several Letters to a Divine of the Church of England. The whole now submitted to the impartial After-sboughts of William Black. stone, Esq. Author of the Commentaries on the Laws of Eng.
land.' 8vo. Pr. 1s. 6d. Dilly. IN the first of these letters the author states the point, which
is the subject of the present dispute, in this manner. • The act of Union of the two kingdoms of England and Scotland, was passed and settled in the fifth year of queen Anne, 1707. By this statute, 'as a learned commentator upon it informs us, the acts of uniformity * of 13 Eliz. and 13 Car. II.
* « There was no other act of uniformity in the reign of this queen besides that of the first year, which is generally prefixed to our Book of Common Prayer. The act of 13 Eliz, here referred to, bcars a different title.'
(ex(except as the fame had been altered by parliament at that time t) and all other as then in force for the preservation of the church of England are declared perpetual ; and it is stipulated that every subsequent king and queen shall take an oath inviolably to maintain the same within England, Ireland, Wales, and the town of Berwick upon Tweed. And it is enacted that these two acts (recited in the Statute of Union, C. S. and 8.) “ shall for ever be observed as fundamental and effential conditions of the union.”
• Dr. Blackstone's observation here is this : " That what. ever else may be deemed fundamental and effential conditions, the preservation of the two churches of England and Scotland in the same state they were in at the time of the Union, and the maintenance of the acts of uniformity which establish our Common Prayer, are expressly declared fo to be.” And he adds, That therefore any alteration in the conftitution of either of those churches, or in the liturgy of the church of England, would be an infringement of these fundamental and effential conditions, and greatly endanger the union.” Comment on the Laws of Engl. 6. 1. Introd. §. 4.
These are the professor's arguments, whereby he seems to be fully of opinion that no akeration, of any kind, can be made in our Book of Common-Prayer, without infringing the Act of Union.
If this opinion is folid, and agreeable to the great and true design of that act, taking it altogether in all its parts and connections, we are never to expect any, the least, reform of our Liturgy from what it is at present, and was when that a&: was made, and vain therefore have been all our reasonable hopes of such a favour, and our applications to obtain it.
. If there be room still allowed for reasoning upon the point, a great variety of arguments will occur, which may seem to invalidate those of the professor, how strong soever they may appear to be.
• I shall not trouble myself on this occasion, to make any formal detail of those arguments, leaving that to others, who have more leisure to consider the subject, and better abilities to exhibit it in its true light.
t. At that time, viz. the time of the Union. But the words of the Union-a& are, “ Otherwise than lych clauses in the said acts, as have been repealed or altered by any subsequent acts of parliament.” As particularly for one, by the Toleration-ad. -Such oversights, however, if we must call them so, may be deemed very pardonable in so voluminous an undertaking, of so complicated a nature, and so replete with difficulties."