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already given. It will therefore be sufficient briefly to show the progress of this great branch of the National income, and to trace it from an early period to its present wonderful amount.

In the year 1613, according to Davenant, the Customs of the Port of London stood thus

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In 1666 the same Author states that the
whole Customs of England were farmed
by the year, at
From 1671 to 1688 the whole Customs of
England produced on an average yearly, only
From 1700 to 1714 the Revenue of the
Customs of England, on an average of 15
years, yielded
While in 1711 the Customs, as stated by
Davenant to have been received in the
Port of London alone, amounted to
In 1725 the Customs of this Port amounted

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to about -1750. Idem, exclusive of the Excise on

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Spirits, Tea, &c. &c. about

1775. Idem .

1785 Idem.

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390,000 o o

555,752 O

1,352,764 。。

1,353,485 o

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Idem. . Idem 2,250,000 O O

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Idem. Idem 3,643,940 9 11

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Idem. . Idem 4,168,661 11

Idem 1798. Idem..

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1799. Idem, including Convoy duties 6,422,791 o 5

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From this just point of view in which the subject is placed, the mind must be struck with astonishment, (especially when it is considered that the immense duties of Excise are not included,) at a progress so rapid, under the weight of so many succeeding wars, and terminating at a crisis of unexampled Public expence, in so splendid a display of the Commercial enterprize of the Merchants, and the opulence of the Metropolis; exhibiting, at the same time, the ability it possesses of contributing, in every exigency of danger and difficulty, to the effectual aid of the State.

The fact however is, that not a little of the success of the Commerce of the Port of London, is to be attributed to the spring which has been given to it by the wise and enlightened policy adopted by the Gopresent War. This vernment in the course of the policy, in spite of all the efforts of the hostile Nations to prevent it, has opened a lucrative and beneficial Trade to their respective Countries, unexampled in all peneformer Wars: a measure highly creditable to the tration and judgment of those who had strength of mind to conceive, and resolution to execute it, in opposition to so many popular prejudices: a measure, in short, most admirably calculated to invigorate Commerce, and the resources of the Country, at the expence of the Enemy. (1)


(1) Notwithstanding the present War, and the various prohibitions vainly attempted to be enforced by our enemies in Spain, France and Holland, our Trade with these Countries, in consequence of the Measures above alluded to, as pursued by Government, appears by the General View in page 22, to have been very extensive.



While every lover of his Country must glory in its Commercial Aggrandizement, and in the exalted pre-eminence which she holds among the Nations of the World; the same spirit of patriotism should act as an incentive to the establishment of those principles of moral rectitude, which form the only true and solid foundation of permanent profperity, either among Nations or Individuals. How much soever the mind may be dazzled with the glare of power and wealth, no truth is better established than this; that where riches flow upon a Country, exhibiting in one scale the advantages arising from the accumulation of masses of property, these blessings are but too frequently weighed down by an accession of crimes in the other:-these, unless their increase is prevented in due time, will forcibly operate in sapping the foundation of all morals, and insensibly lead to those consequences which have fatally terminated the Power, the Splendor, and even the Existence of Nations.

The present state of society and manners-The wonderful change apparent in the habits of the lower orders of the Community-The recent, and perhaps too effectual attempts to undermine that sense of Religion and moral rectitude, which re

Imports and Exports to To Spain

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and from the Port of Lon-To France and Flan-
don only, for the year end- ders
ing the 5th of Jan. 1798.) To Holland . .


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£-947,759 17 8

1,015,017 19 O 2,211,362 O IO

4,174,139 17 6 strained

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strained the mass of the people from minor acts of delinquency: All these considerations call for such internal regulations as may operate in the most immediate manner, in controlling the ill-directed and tumultuous activity of human passions; to counteract the influence of wealth under its various attractions of pleasure and pain; and to prevent it from disseminating its poison, while it confers its blessings.

To effect this purpose, inestimable in a national point of view, and benevolent and humane to all whose vices and enormities it tends to restrain, a Police must be resorted to upon the broad scale of General Prevention-Mild in its operations,—Effective in its results; having justice and humanity for its basis, and the general security of the State and Individuals for its ultimate object.

The art of oeconomising through the medium of a well-regulated Police, with a view to the prevention of crimes, by the introduction of restraints, perfectly congenial to the principles of the British Constitution, may be considered as a new branch of Science in Political Philosophy.

Fortunately however for the best interests of Mankind, such a system has been demonstrated to be practicable. In its further operation, the truc happiness and comfort of the People will inevitably be promoted; while by extending security to Commercial Property, the privileges of innocence will be preserved, and the comforts of Civil Society eminently enlarged.



Reflections on the origin, rise, and progress of Depredations on the River Thames.-Causes assigned, viz. Smuggling pursuits generating Depravity-Impunity-The want of apposite Laws, and the means of carrying them into execution.-River Plunder felt as a serious evil about the middle of the Century.The Bumboat Act of the 2d Geo. III. Cap. 28.—Its Provisions explained.—Bumboats greatly diminished since the passing of this act-Supplied by the Watermen's boats.-The inefficacy of the Bumboat Act explained.—Culprits support one another by raising a general Fund for Penalties. The injury to the Crown and the Subject, from this source in the Century, estimated at Ten Millions Sterling. An Inquiry instituted in 1797, with a view to the establishing a Police.-A detail of the evils which the adoption of the System developed, 1st. with respect to the Depredations of River Pirates-2d. Night Plunderers-3d. Light Horsemen—4th. Heavy Horsemen-5th. Journeymen Coopers-6th. Watermen-7th. Mud-larks-8th. Rat-catchers9th. Game Lightermen-10th. Scuffle-hunters.Pillage on the Quays.-Warehouses.-The Devil hogsheads explained.-The aggregate loss under pretence of drawing Samples, estimated at 70,000l. a year in West-India articles, exclusive of general plunder.-Concluding observations.

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