Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

tuous qualities greatly diminished; and the ink formed with such oil dries expeditiously, and proves sufficiently adhesive. The oil thus prepared is called drying oil, and the process is as follows --Ten or twelve gallons of oil are exposed to the action of the fire in an iron pot, large enough to make room for the swell of the oil during the boiling :-while boiling, the oil is to be constantly stirred with an iron ladle; and if it does not fame itself, it is to be kindled with a piece of lighted paper, or burning wood :- after half an hour or more the flame is extinguished, and the boiling continued till the oil is of a proper consistence. By this method, the most inflammable parts are consumed, and the fatness and greafiness, which are noxious qualities in printing-ink or paints, are disipated. The oil in this state is called printer's varnish.This varnish is viscous and tenacious, like the soft resinous juices; it is not soluble in water or spirit of wine ; mixes readily with fresh oil; and united with mucilages, diffolves in water into a milky liquor; with strong alkaline ley it forms a soapy compound, easily wiped or brushed away; and hence types are cleaned after an impression, by brushing them with hot ley.

The linseed and nut oils are made choice of for this use; the other expressed oils, it is said, cannot be sufficiently freed from their unctuous quality; the ink made from these oils dries slowly, finks into the paper beyond the mark of the type, and forms a yellow stain ; it comes off and smears the paper, during the beating and pressing in the book-binders hands.

Some workmen are accustomed, after the flame is extinguished, to throw in onions and crusts of bread, upon a suppofition that the greasiness is, by these additions, more effectually destroyed.- Our Author however says, that a good varnish may be prepared by fire alone : -- others, to give a greater body, and to increase the drying quality of the oil, add a quantity of turpentine,, boiled to a due consistence :-others again use litharge, with the fame intention. It is observed in the French encyclopedie, that when the oil is very old, neither of these additions is necesiary; and when the oil is new, the spreading and daubing of the ink can only be prevented by the addition of some boiled furpentine :-that it is more eligible to use old oil, than to have recourse to these corrections ; for the new oils thus prepared, especially with the addition of litharge, adhere so firmly to the types, that it is not easily dissolved by the alkaline ley, and con-' sequently the eye of the letter is soon clogged up.

For the rolling-press ink, it is necessary that the oil be so managed as to be left of a more fluid consistence; and the colouring matter employed is commonly called Frankfort black, which appears from our Author's experiments to be a vegetable charcoal; some suppose it to be prepared from vine-iwigs, others

from

from the kernels of fruits and wine-lees burnt together. The coal from vine-twigs is nearly the same with that from the small branches of other trees; but from the kernels of fruits, a coal considerably more soft and mellow is obtained.-There is this difference with respect to the rolling-press and the printing-press work; in the former the impression is received from figures hollowed in a copper-plate, in the latter from prominent types : the rolling-press ink therefore must be made with thinner oil, and so asisted by the heat of the plate, as readily to sink into the cavities, and easily be wiped from those smooth parts of the plate which leave the paper white.

[To be continued.]

Bp. Ellys's Tracts on the Temporal Liberty of Subjects on England.

Concluded.

I
N the Appendix to the last volume of our Review, published

in January, we entered upon an examination of this work : and as it is a subject of great importance, in which every Briton is immediately interested, we confined ourselves, in that article, to our Author's first tract, wherein he considers the legal provifions made in favour of the liberty of the subject in judicial proceedings, as to matters both criminal and civil. We Thall now lay before our Readers some account of the remaining part of this useful work, and select such specimens as appear to be most generally instructive and entertaining.

His Lordship, in the second essay, treats of the manner of impoling taxes; and the other privileges of parliament: and represents the illegal attempts of our ancient kings to levy money without the consent of parliament. William the Conqueror, contrary to a charter granted in the latter part of his reign, and several of his fucceffors, revived and levied various taxes in an arbitrary manner, and in too high proportions, by their own bare authosity, or with only the advice of their privy council. A variety of instances of oppressions of this kind are mentioned as practised by almost all our kings from the Conquest down to the happy Revolution, when the sole right of raising money was finally vested in the parliament. But, says our Author, the most express and avowed claim of right to this prerogative, was in the reign of Charles I. who insisted that tonnage and poundage were due to the crown by hereditary right, without any grant from the subjects; that he could, by his own authority, not only make impositions upon merchandizes, but also could, in cases of danger, of which he was the sole judge, oblige the maritime, and even the inland counties, to find a proper number of Ships

for the defence of the seas, or levy the sums of money upor them, that should be requisite for the same purpose. But in opposition to thele practices, the house of commans made strong remonftrances, founded upon evident and ancient facts; and the king, in his answer to the petition of right, found himself obliged to acknowledge, that the Crown had no right to levy any money, without the consent of the Lords and Commons in parliament."

Befides actual impositions, there were other methods of accomplishing the same end, more indirect, but in their consequences equally oppressive and injurious, which were practised by our kings, and which have generally been deemed illegal, and destructive of the liberties of the people. Of this kind the Bifhop mentions the king's debasing the coin, so as to endanger the property of his subjects, without their consent in parliament. This was done by Henry I, Stephen, Henry III, and several other of our ancient kings: “ One of the most remarkable alterations in the coin was made in Edward III's reign, by the Bp. of Winchester, then treasurer of England, who caused new groats and half-groats to be coined, less by five fhillings in the pound than the sterling value ; whereby victuals and merchandizes became dearer through the whole realm. Henry VIII. abased his coin more than one half of its value. Several procla, mations were iflued out in the reign of Edward VI. for sinking the value of the coin one third-part, and sometimes one-half. And in Queen Mary's reign, a proclamation was issued for raising the currency of the testoons above their intrinsic value. Q. Elizabeth altered and debaled the Irish coin, which was greatly complained of; and the Mirror of Justice says, that, according to the ancient Saxon conftitution, changes of this fort in the coin ought not to be made, without the affent of parliament (a); and Lord Coke was also of the same opinion (b). Sir Thomas Smith, in his Treatise on the English Commonwealth, represents it to be the king's right, to put what value he pleases upon his coin. And Sir Robert Cotton was not of opinion with the Mirror of Justice, that the king cannot abase his coin without assent of parliament. Even Lord Chief- Justice Hales says (c) it is true the embasing of money, in point of allay, hath not been very frequently practised in England ; and it would be a dishonour if it should; neither is it safe to be attempted without parliamentary advice : but surely if we respect the right of the thing, it is in the king's power to do it.”-“ Hence therefore, as our Author well observes, it is highly probable, that by our ancient constitution, the crown was trusted with the executive

(6) 2d Inft. p. 576.

(a) Chap. 1. Sect. 3. Pl. of Crown, Vol. I. p. 193.

(.) Hift.

power

power of ascertaining the value of money: but then it was undoubtedly intended, that the king should do it for the benefit, and not for the ruin of his people. For it was always a maxim in law, as Lord Coke fays (d), that the law hath fo admeasured the prerogative of the crown, that it cannot juftly injure any one, unless doing so may be for the public service.' -Dr. Blackstone acknowledges that the denomination, or the value for which the coin is to pass current, is in the breast of the king, but that his prerogative doth not extend to the debasing or inhancing the value of the coin, above or below the sterling value(e). But whatever debate there may be among the lawyers about the extent of the royal prerogative in this respect, it hath been made use of as a mode of oppreflion and imposition in this and other nacions; and is what no administration will now attempt unless supported by parliamentary authority, which it would be vain to expect.

Another method of breaking in upon the property of subjects without their consent, was, by granting patents for monopolies, Lord Coke defines a monopoly to be “ an institution by the king, by his grant or commission, or otherwise, to any person or corporation, of and for the sole buying, selling, making, working, or using of any thing, whereby any person or corporation are sought to be restrained of any freedom or liberty they had before, or hindered in their lawful trade.” Of this practice we have innumerable instances from the reign of Edward III. to much later times : in the reign of Elizabeth there were great and repeated complaints on this subject, which occafioned many petitions and debates in parliament relating to the prerogative of the crown and the liberty of the people. James continued the same practice, in whose reign, however, an act was made to put an end to all grievances of this kind, by which it is declared, That all monopolies are contrary to the laws of this realm ; and so are, and shall be, utterly void, and of none effect, and in no wise be put in use or execution. And that all such grants of monopolies shall be ever hereafter tried according to the common laws of this realm, and not otherwise. The

party grieved, by such grants or monopolies, shall recover treble das mages and double costs, by action in the courts at Westminster. And whoever stays, or procures judgment to be stayed or delayed upon such actions, shall incur a præmunire : and that the crown fhall only grant exclusive patents for fourteen years, to new manufactures and inventions. One would have imagined that this statute would have put an entire end to such oppressive and injurious measures; but in the reigns of Charles I. and Charles

(d) ad Init. p. 36. Look I. Ch. 7.

(c) Comment. on Laws of England, II. ever tenacious of prerogative, several patents were granted, in the way of monopoly, equally detrimental to trade and oppressive to the subject, of which some continue unrevoked to this day ; though it hath been proved in the fullest manner, that they directly contradict the very purposes of public utility for which they were professedly granted.

Having set forth some of the illegal methods that many of our former kings pursued, for raising money by their own authority, without the Consent of parliament, Dr. Ellys proceeds, in the second section of this tract, to point out some other practices, which were no less oppressive to the subject; and which, though then deem'd legal, have since been declared otherwife. The first he mentions is purveyance, an oppression, says he, so big, that all other oppressions seems to be swallowed up in that one. This was originally, without doubt, a legal right in the crown; being of a like nature with fome prerogatives ftill enjoyed by some foreign princes : it was intended for the making more plentiful and choice provision for the housholds of princes, and for their better accommodation when they travelled. are told by Lord Coke, that the insolence of the purveyors, bearing themselves so proudly under the great officers of the king's houfhold, grew to that height, that they would take what and as much as they pleased ; and many times where it might least be spared, and for others besides the king's houshold; and sometimes would pay nothing, and many times less than the true value ; and many persons would make purveyance without any warrant at all. These grievances were perpetually complained of in parliament, and many statutes made to prevent and restrain them, but in vain : they were practised not only in the reigns of the Richards, the Edwards, and the Henrys, but were continued in the times of Elizabeth, James and Charles. The advantage arising to the crown from purveyance, was estimated, in 35 Elizabeth, communibus annis, at 25,000l. per Ann. in James's time at 40, and in the following reign at near 50,000 l.

per ann.'

• Some persons were of opinion, that this prerogative was in. separable from the crown. Lord Coke and Sir Robert Atkins fay it in express terms, and so does Sir Robert Cotton; and Fabian Phil ps, in Charles the Second's time, wrote a long trea. tise, in which he professes to thew the antiquity, and among other things the necessity of it. But, happily for this nation, the members of the first parliament after Charles II. was restored, were of a different opinion, and were able to prevail upon that prince to give it up: accordingly the right of purveyance was then entirely abolished.

Another considerable advantage which we have gained over our ancestors is, that the king cannot billet or quarter any

soldiers,

« ZurückWeiter »