Considerations upon the contracting with Cornwall for Tin.

The last Contract for Tin commencing Iune 1st {illeg}|17|10, & ending with the Queens death Aug. 1st 1714 for 1800 Tunns pr an from Cornwall in times peace besides about 40 Tuns from Devon. And the consumption has carried off 1180 Tuns an \which is less than the purchase by about 6{4}|6|0 Tunns pr{sic}/. And at her Majts death there remained in her hands unsold about 4800 Tuns stan. wt.

If the contract be renewed & assigned over to the King, the Queens Tin will be at least four years in selling & at the end of that time the King will have received 7360 Tuns \remaining/ in his hands unsold, & so be in a much worse circumstances as to these Contracts then the Queen was at her death. This Tin will cost the King 511520\0293/li, besides freight 7360li, charges in Cornwall at {illeg}|9|000 \& London about 9000/, & interest of all the money advanced at 5 pr cent 5{39}{illeg}|2665|li; in all, 5756{00}\{77{illeg}|{1}|8}/li before this Tin begins to be sold. And during the sale thereof the interest of the 57{1}|5|86{0}\9{illeg}|318|/li at 5 pr cent wo\u/ld amount into {illeg}285{illeg}|966|li pr an.

Let us now suppose that at the end of that time the contract ceases & that the price of the Tin is lowered untill the King shall sell as much Tin as shall be sold by the people of Cornwall, suppose 600 Tuns per an (the whole sales amounting to about 1180 Tuns|:|) |&| for compassing this, the price must be so low that it shall not be worth the whole for Cornwall to dig & work above 580 or 600 Tuns per an. When the price has been 55 or 50li per Tun, they have dug a much greater quantity, & therefore the price must be set lower, suppose at 45 or 40li per Tun.

Now if the King should sell {illeg}|60||0| Tuns per an after \the rate of/ 45li per Tun \stan wt/, the sale would produce an Annuity of 600 27000li per an till all his Tin be sold, that is, for twelve years & a quarter & this Annuity would not suffice to pay the interest of the 57{illeg}29|9{7}99|{3}18||li advanced, & in the end of the time there would be not left to satisfy the King for the principall & for the further charges of selling the Tin, & therefore the King would\may/ lose above half a million of money\58000li & it he cannot take up money at 5 {/5\} per cent his loss will be still greater/, by the |a| contract for \only/ four years. \And if he cannot take up money at 5 pr cent + < insertion from the left margin > +nor sell his tin at 45li per Tunn{sic} < text from f 524r resumes > his loss may be still greater./ And if \to lessen the loss/ he would sell his Tin faster, he must sell it for a price still lower & thereby increase the dist|c|ontent of Cornwall.

Whence its easy to understand that if hte {who} contract should be renewed for three years only, the King might lose \above/ 400000li \thre {sic} or four or five hundred thousand pounds {sic} thereby {sic}/ thereby \or above/, & if it should be renewed for above four years, the loss & dead stock of Tin would encrease perpetually, & make it every year more & mo{illeg}|r|e difficult to put an end to these contracts without ruining Cornwall. the owners of Tin-lands in Cornwall.

© 2020 The Newton Project

Professor Rob Iliffe
Director, AHRC Newton Papers Project

Scott Mandelbrote,
Fellow & Perne librarian, Peterhouse, Cambridge

Faculty of History, George Street, Oxford, OX1 2RL - newtonproject@history.ox.ac.uk

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