An Additional Act for the better improvement and advancing the receipts of the Excise and New-Impost. At the Parliament begun at Westminster the 17 day of September, An. Dom. 1657.

London, Henry Hills and Iohn Field, Printers to His Highness, 1657.

Folio, pp. [ii], 1-14, 11-42, 47-61, [1 blank], complete; woodcut of the arms of the Protectorate on the title; lower corner of one sheet torn off (far from text); a few light marks, but a very good copy in modern mustard cloth; exlibris of C. A. Van Der Beek to the front pastedown.

£250

Approximately:
US $313€292

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An Additional Act for the better improvement and advancing the receipts of the Excise and New-Impost. At the Parliament begun at Westminster the 17 day of September, An. Dom. 1657.

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First edition. The most substantial part of the Act, entitled ‘A Book of Values of Merchandize imported, according to which, excize is to be paid by the first buyer’, includes a 40-page alphabetical list of imported commodities, each recorded with the respective payable duty. A lively and detailed fresco of mid-seventeenth-century English life is conjured up in the sequence of goods, from homely soap-ashes and baskets and ‘candle-week’, to exotic commodities from colonies and plantations. Among many others: cochineal, drugs (with their own sub-list of about 260 individual substances), elephants teeth, ebony, fans, furs of all kinds, hour-glasses, horses, linen, musical instrument parts, oars, pans, 11 sorts of paper, saffron, silks, spectacles, whale-bone. Children’s items (coaches, fiddles, rattles, trumpets etc) pepper the list quite insistently, bringing to the fore a picture of a specific market which is perhaps rarely studied from this point of view.

ESTC R206320. This is the issue with the first line of the imprint ending in ‘Field’; another was produced (no priority given) with that line ending in ‘His’.

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