Front Page Titles (by Subject) SECT. XIII.: That a Considerable part of our late Treasure is exhausted: Application to our Publick and Private Revenues: Objections Answered, viz. The Plenty of Money to be let on Securities, Stores of Money in London, Stocks in Merchandize, the Over - A Select Collection of Early English Tracts on Commerce from the Originals of Mun, Roberts, North, and Others
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SECT. XIII.: That a Considerable part of our late Treasure is exhausted: Application to our Publick and Private Revenues: Objections Answered, viz. The Plenty of Money to be let on Securities, Stores of Money in London, Stocks in Merchandize, the Over - John Ramsay McCulloch, A Select Collection of Early English Tracts on Commerce from the Originals of Mun, Roberts, North, and Others 
A Select Collection of Early English Tracts on Commerce from the Originals of Mun, Roberts, North, and Others, with a Preface and Index (London: Printed for the Political Economy Club, 1856).
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That a Considerable part of our late Treasure is exhausted: Application to our Publick and Private Revenues: Objections Answered, viz. The Plenty of Money to be let on Securities, Stores of Money in London, Stocks in Merchandize, the Over-weightiness of our Coin, &c.
AFter what hath been said, it may seem little requisite to enquire whether Mr. Fortrey Prophesied a-right, when he foretold the Exhausting of our Treasure.
If the Diffusive Body of the People be much Poorer than before, they have much less Treasure than before; For Poverty is but the privation of Treasure. Now if the Question be whether the Nation be Poorer, it must be undeniable from all those Badges of Poverty I have mentioned before, if any of those particular Men who find themselves at ease, are yet unwilling to believe it, they may be further convinced from the universal Cries of the People, (at least from the Land-holders, remaining Manufacturers, and their Dependants who make up the gross and stanch Body of the Nation) they remember when it was otherwise, when there was a far greater plenty of Money in all our inferiour Cities, Corporations, and Villages; when our Farmers had their Rents before hand, and had Stocks for every Farm; when they and our Manufacturers got Estates, and when vast Taxes could be readily raised; and therefore are the most proper Judges of the odds, who feel the present Scarcity, and want of Money; they cannot conspire in a Falsity of this Nature, but in so general and near a Concern, The Voice of the People hath been taken to be like the Speech of God. Those that find their Stocks wasted, or much Contracted, their late Revenues sunk, their home-Commodities of much less value, their labours in Manufactures turn to less Profit, or to none at all, the poor and their Maintenances vastly increased, the Nation involved in Debts, Money very hard to be gotten or raised in the way of home-Trade, with other Common hardships, cannot be argued out of their Senses; Crede quod habes & habes, is no Logick in matters of Interest, but amongst Fools and Madmen; or let Men be never so good at perswading or believing, yet when their Estates and Stocks are thus sunk, they cannot answer the Publick Emergencies by Payment of as great Taxes as before.
I should not say more to prove our National Treasure is much diminished, (taking it to be indisputable; and being sensible, that the over-labouring a Truth, may bring it in question) but having something to offer, by which (as it seems to me) some nearer Conjecture may be made of the Quantity of Money thus exhausted, I shall present it to the Reader, desiring his Excuse, if he think it unnecessary.
So great was the Quantity of our late Harp and Cross Money, before the year (60) that according to the best Estimate I can make or meet with, it made about 10 or 15 per Cent. of our Common Money in tale in the Countrey, and more in London, which I do not take to be the meer Effect of our extraordinary Exports in Trade, for the years then last preceding, but partly of the Plate then lately Coined, and our Stocking Ireland; but more than either, from our far less yearly Imports of all kinds several years before 1660.
I must refer it to the Memory, or other Information of the Reader, whether he can comply with me in the aforesaid late quantity of our Harp and Cross Money; whatsoever it were, this Money being taken in to be recoined in the year (60) must, when recoined, produce the like Quantity of His Majestie’s Coin; besides which, according to the said Accompt in November (75) there had then been 2238997l. more Coined since His Majestie’s Restoration, and since the said Accompt, there hath been yet more Coyned; which supposing to be but 600000l. had the Money so Recoyned, and since Coyned with His now Majestie’s Impression, continued in the Nation, the new Money under His Majestie’s Impression, must have been much above Three Millions, I conceive near Four Millions; and then supposing we had Twelve Millions in the Nation, it would have been above 30 per Cent. of our currant Money in Tale, more, were our whole Treasure less than Twelve Millions.
Whereas we see at this day, that the new Money of His now Majestie’s Impression, does not amount to above 5 per Cent. of the currant Money in the Countrey, taking one Payment with another, (especially in such Counties as lye any thing remote from London) I think not so much.
’Tis true, that in London, where the Mint and Merchants are, there is some greater quantity of new money; and perhaps somewhat more of late than usually; because that by occasion of the late Forreign Wars, we have had somewhat a better Vent for our English Cloths, and a greater Exportation of our Annual produce of Corn: But yet in London it does not make near 30 per Cent. taking one Payment with another; nor I conceive, more than equal the quantity of our late Harp and Cross Money.
Now if the Money in His now Majesties Impression, be less in quantity than the Harp and Cross Money, it must follow, that notwithstanding all the Money since Coyned, we have less Money in the Nation than we had in (59;) if our present new Coyn but equal the Harp and Cross Money, it follows, that we have now no more Money than in (59). And in either Case, that as much of our new Coyn as amounts to the said whole 2238997l. and all the other Money Coyned since November (75) is also Exported: For though we may still have some Coyn of each of the succeeding years since (59;) yet if all of it put together amounts to no more than the quantity of the Harp and Cross Money we had in (59,) our Stock of Treasure cannot be more than it was in (59:) if less, then our present Stock is less.
And if Millions of our new Money, Coyned since (59) be gone, as, I take it, ’tis evident they are; we may reasonably Collect that as much or more of our old Coyn, is also Exported (by the old Coyn, I mean such as was Coyned in the Reigns of King James and King Charles the First, and before) of which we had lately a mighty Store, almost all of it valuable and unclipped, especially the Gold, whereof we had an abundance commonly passing in home-Trade and Payments, there is no reason why these Coyns, being as valuable or more, should not be as good a Commodity in Trade as the new.
And accordingly we may to our Comforts observe, that this late mighty Store of old Gold, is in a manner totally vanished, those few pieces which remain, being almost taken as Medals, never to be parted with.
If it be said that part of our old Gold is Coyned into Guinnies, this will not alter the Case, since our whole new Coyn is no more in proportion to the old, than before is noted.
So of our old Silver Coyn, there is very little remaining, but what is much Clipped, or worn; and therefore not valuable for Exportation. We have those yet alive who can remember what a flowing Treasure we had in all Parts of England, before we had any Harp and Cross Money, and are now sensible of the general scarcity and Want of it.
This does let in a further Presumption, that our new Coyn is diminished to a much greater degree, than it appears to be: For, suppose we have now but a moiety of all the old Coyn we had in the year (59), ’Tis plain, that a moiety of the Harp and Cross Money (had it remained) would now hold the same proportion to the old, as the whole did in (59), and so will a moiety of our new Coyned Money: and thus will it be in any lesser proportions.
If the new Coyn come to be less in proportion to the old, than it was before, it is an infallible evidence of the Diminution of our Treasure, because the old Coyn could not increase; But if the new Coyn come to be more in proportion to the old Coyn than before, this is no manner of Demonstration of the increase of Treasure, since the decrease of the old Coyn may produce this Odds.
Thus after the Consumption of our old Gold, we have more than twenty Guinneys to one Broad Piece; but I think no body will press it as an Argument of more Gold in the Nation than we lately had; so having lost so great a part of our valuable old Silver Coyn, ’tis no Wonder if our new Silver Coyn seems so much as it doth, especially about London; perhaps it hath been a kind of Providence that we have had so much Clipt and worn Money; since otherwise we might have had as little old Silver, as we have old Gold; and might have been reduced to our present Store of new Silver Coyn, as we are to our Guinneys, which might have afforded a weighty Argument of the increase of our Treasure.
Upon these Grounds, and upon the common Wants, Necessities, and Decays mentioned before, it may reasonably be concluded, That besides the loss of most of those Millions Coyned since His Majestie’s Restauration, we have lost many more Millions of the old Coyn in Silver and Gold; I shall leave the quantity to be computed by the indifferent Reader: Those who set out the said Accompt from the Mint, taking notice of the great consumption of our Treasure by reason of its being Exported, did by the same Paper, then estimate it to be reduced to about four or five Millions, and by the Nature of that Accompt, they seem no unfit Persons to make some competent Judgment of this Matter.
Whatsoever our Coyned Treasure was when this Accompt was made, ’twas plainly much less then, than it would have been, had none been Exported; and though it must be admitted, that our late Exportation of our Annual Corn, and what other advantages we had during the late War, may have somewhat helped us, yet we have reason to think it farther diminished now, especially considering our losses at Sea by the Dutch, and others, before we dis-engaged from the late War, and since by the French and Algiers Pirates, and the mony lately and daily exported by Papists departed hence; to which may be added what we must now further export by the expiration of the Irish Acts, and the dear buying of these goods we imported from France, already added to the former Overballance of our Importations.
Then let the Reader judg what we are to hope for in our private and publick Revenues, I shall only endeavour to put him into a method of conjecturing, leaving the compute to his greater ingenuity and leisure. Suppose we have now 5, 6, or 7 Millions of Treasure in the Nation; let him consider how much of this must constantly lye in the hands of Traders to attend the payment of Customs, and the buying up of our vast importations; how much always is, and must be actually collected in Taxes, and either lies in the Exchequer, or in the hands of Officers; and how much does, and always will lye dead in Banks and other private hands; and then, how much will at the same time (I say at the same time) be employed in the home-Markets to buy of the annual Produce of Lands; perhaps it will not be half of the Whole: Then recollecting that we have 29568000 Acres of Land in England, what Rent can they yield, one with the other. Admitting this whole Treasure at the same time stirring in the home-Markets, our whole Land-Revenues could not be much; all the help we have is, that we have many great wasts, which yielding little or nothing, a greater quantity of this floating money is applicable to the rest; and yet to our sorrow we have found that our rents are mightily sunk, which having not abated so much or speedily as was requisite, our Yeomanry are generally impoverish’t.
Then for our publick Revenue, ’tis as plain, it must be confined to the stock of Treasure be it greater or less. We have many who seem to resent the narrowness of his Majestie’s Revenue and Supplies, and are ready to expostulate why they should not be equal to the French King’s; let them consider what may possibly be paid out of our Land Revenues thus contracted, and constantly charged with the maintenance of our numerous poor; and besides, that the English having by the constitutions of the Government an undoubted liberty and property, are accustomed to live well, and their Representatives, being a part of themselves, in whose disposition it lies to give supplies or not, will have regard to their own and the peoples abilities; should they give extravagantly it would be like Diego’s Will, and must induce many of those sad consequences mentioned before; what then if we should be involved in any long Foreign War, or obliged to any great extraordinary publick Charge in time of Peace, whilst we remain under a consumptive Trade? which I intimate once more to show the necessity of improving our Trade.
I shall now answer some common Objections.
The most usual is, That there is now as much money to be let on good Securities in England, as there are Securities, or rather more; from whence some infer that there is as much, or more money than ever in England.
To this I answer, That on the contrary, it only proves the scarcity of Securities, and therein the poverty of the Nation; for personal Security for money being in a manner lost; all the floating money to be let out at interest is thrust upon Land-Securities; which (were they all good) would take off much less money than was let out at interest when both Land and Personal Securities stood: But, as the National Poverty hath subverted Personal Security, so hath it crept into the Land; for mens estates are already so entangled with Debts, that there is not one Land-Security in twenty that is good, as dear experience hath now taught us. Then, the Securities being grown so scarce and narrow, ’tis no wonder that there is now as much money to be let out as there are Securities, and more. Thus if a man had 1000l. in the Isle of Shetland, he would there hardly find any Security for it; which at this rate of arguing would prove the Isle of Shetland richer than the Isle of Great Britain.
And upon this occasion I shall add, That there is no possible way for restoring the Securities and Credits of England, but by restoring its Riches; no Register can do it, at least comparable to the other; we may Register our common Poverty, but nothing will make an ill man value his credit, or able to satisfie for a Cheat, but his own private wealth; nothing can make a man who is honestly inclined to do a foul thing, but Poverty and Necessity.
Another Objection, partly answered before, is, That there is still as much money in and about London, as ever; from whence they would argue as much money in the Nation as before.
I cannot admit this fact; if I did, the consequence is lame and frivolous; however, because there hath been such a pother made about the money in London, I shall give some further account of it.
I agree that there are considerable quantities of money always lodging in and about London, in some particular hands: But the reason is, because the King’s Revenue is paid in, and issued out, in and about London. There is also the Mint, and there do our principal Merchants live, who Trade with so much exported money or bullion, and keep money dead for the Customs. This is also the great Port for Forreign Importations; and the Country Retailers, who buy them there and vend them to the people, must send up their money to London: Upon which and the like occasions, ’tis thought near half the money in England is in London: The more is the pity; it were much better for the Nation that there were more home-Manufacture, with Forreign Stores of re-exportable Goods, and a less proportion of our money; and the rather because it stagnates for a time in the hands of Merchants, Banquers, and Scriveners; and facilities the culling, melting, and exportation. This being the great Sluce of our Treasure will necessarily draw it from all parts, as long as we have any in the Nation.
These Stores of money in London must rather evidence the poverty of the people, who being over ballanced by the money drawn out for Importations and Taxes, and therefore incapable of answering those payments by Bills or Returns to London; very much of our Taxes have been sent up in Carts and Waggons, and our Country Retailers continually send up money in specie by the Carriers; which must drein away that which remains, in a little time: Nor do those Stores of money much spread, or benefit the general body of Traders, even in London; who were never so poor or broke so fast (tho never so fine) as now. It is impossible that the occasions, vanities, or the remaining stock of the Kingdom can ever support such a prodigious Increase of Retailers and Shop-keepers as are in and about London, being near 100000 in number, when in Amsterdam there are not 5000.
Nor is it to be objected, That I have not computed our present Stores of Merchandize or Forreign Effects as part of the National wealth.
First, because the present question is about the actual fruit and produce of a National Trade in new Treasure; and not about the quantity of our Stores of Merchandize or Forreign Effects.
’Tis true, That if a Nation whose Trade is truly regulated, hath a great Store-house of Forreign Goods, as in Holland, or great Forreign effects, ’tis very possible and likely that these may produce new Treasure; and if they do, then is the National gain in Treasure to be computed, and not before.
For on the other side ’tis possible (even in a Nation that hath a due ballance of Trade) that such Stores and Effects may produce no Treasure; for the Forreign Stores being re-exported may be lost by the perils of the Sea, or Seisures of Princes or Pirates: we may remember the late seisures of the English, by the French Capers; the like casualties do attend Forreign Effects, for which we may also remember when our Effects were seized in Spain.
But Secondly, Supposing none of those Casualties, yet (as a National Trade may be managed) these stores and Effects shall produce no new Treasure to the Nation; as when these Forreign Goods and Stores are, and must be spent at home; and the Forreign Effects are continually by Bills of Exchange, applied to pay for those Forreign Goods; so if the Merchants are sometimes forced to Import and Coyn some Forreign Bullion yearly, but yet Export it, or the like quantity of Money or Bullion, the Nation gets nothing; and if more Treasure be Exported than is yearly Imported, the Nation loses: in which Case the stock so imployed in Trade doth prejudice the wealth of the Nation; since in the Whole it makes up a monstrous Engin for the Bulgeing out of its Treasure; and that this hath been the Case of our English Trade, is plain enough.
Nor can the Forreign Stock in such a Consumptive Trade be of any great value, since as some Effects are gotten by our Merchants in one Forreign Countrey, so are debts contracted in another, as long as our Merchants can have credit; and then perhaps our Forreign debts may be near the value of our Forreign Effects, and probably more; or however, cannot be thought equal to our former stock in Trade, when we were not over ballanced.
There are yet other objectors, who admitting much of our Treasure Exported, will excuse our Trade, and assign the cause of it in the over weightiness of our Coyn, and the undervaluing it in our Forreign Bills of Exchange, &c.
These are old inconsiderate fancies, sufficiently refuted before, yet I should be more particular in it, had not Mr. Mun in his Book of Trade taken the pains to clear this and the like objections by evident reason and instances, in six several Chapters, beginning at pa. 62. proving withal, that nothing but the Overballance of Trade can exhaust the National Treasure; to which therefore I refer the Reader.