<74r>

[1]

May it please your Lordship

According to your Lordships direction we have drawn up an account hereunto annexed of the weight assay & value of dives forreign coyns. And in another annexed paper we have compared the values set upon gold in several nations so far as at present we have been able to get intelligence. By which account it seems to us that gold is valued higher in England then in Holland & France by about 7d or 8d in a Guinea & that in Spain Italy & the north (so far as we can yet informe ourselves) it is valued much lower then in England after the rate as in France.

Were the melting down of forreign monies & bullion for exportation prohibited in private shops, & licensed only in the Mint it would give us opportunity of knowing more exactly & more generally the intrinsic values of forreign cons of several nations & the prizes of gold in the markets abroad from time to time & how trade goes with respect to gold & silver & it might also prevent the melting down of our money in private for exportation.

Exchangers reccon 1lib sterling at a par with 44449 Dutch styvers which recconning is grownded on a supposition that a Patagon or Dutch Rixdoller which is 50 styvers equals in value a Rixdollar of the Empire or Ecu of France or spanish Piastre which is worth 4s 6d of our money whereas a Patagon is worth but 4s 4d12. And tho we are told that a Patagon in this recconing is Bank paper money which is 3, 4 or 5 per cent better then specie money, yet the putting a par between our specie money & their paper money seems improper & may make the exchange more liable to tricking then if the Par were put between specie money & specie moeny, as it ought to be. For between specie money which is of a certian intrinsic value & paper money which is of no intrinsic value & of an uncertain extrinsic value there can be no par assigned.

Gold in the East Indies is at a much lower value then in Europe being in China & Iapan but about 9 or 10 times of more value then its weight of silver whereas here it is above 15 times the value. Which is the reason why the Merchants carry silver to the East Indies & China & leave the gold at home, & that of late years as the trade of India has increased there has been much less silver coyned in proportion to Gold then formerly. In the first twelve years after the Act for encouragement of coynage there was coyned more silver then Gold vizt 1669826li 8s 3d in Gold & 1896338l. 10s. 8d in silver In the next ten years there was coyned above three times more gold then silver vizt <74v> 4363776li. 4. 10 in gold & 1337730li. 5. 9 in silver. In the last 13 years there has bin coyned out of forreign Bullion about 15 times more gold then silver monies. And this decrease of the coynage of silver in proportion to that of gold & the decrease also of silver money by melting it down for exportation while the gold stays with us tends to raise the value of silver monies by its scarceness in proportion to the gold. Which is a further argument for lowering the price of Guineas. For the more plentiful gold grows in respect of silver the more apt its price will be to fall.

Laws against exporting money may upon some extraordinary occasions do some good but usually do more hurt. Such Laws cannot hinder money from getting abroad where it is wanted to ballance trade: on the contrary they hinder Bullion from flowing freely into the Market of England & from the Market into the Mint for increasing the coyn. For the more Gold & Silver flows through the Market of England & the Mint the more will stick among us. The best way of preserving & encreasing the coyn is to take care of the ballance of trade & encourage the flowing of gold & silver through the Market & Mint of England.

Trade is ballanced by promoting the exporting of our own product & manufactur & checking luxury in forreign commodities especially from countries which must be paid in money. The old East India company was obliged to export yearly English manufactures to the value of 100000li. Were the present company obliged to export English commodities not of a certain value yearly but of a certain value in proportion to the silver they export & care taken to make them do it: it would put them upon finding out new ways of vending our commodities for answer the price of Indian goods.

The prohibiting the exportation of money & licensing that of forreign Bullion raises the price of Bullion above that of money which is of very ill consequence. If would be much better on the contrary to prohibit the exportation of Bullion & licence that of money. For this would set the price of money above that of bullion as it ought to be, & increase the coyn bringing much silver through the Mint & by the new coynd money running amongst us till exportation & be of honour to the nation by the passing of our money into forreign countries. For our money being better standarded & better coyned then pieces of eight would in time be of more credit abroad then pieces of 8 & make us appear more rich & potent then we for at present

And some of these effects would be had by licensing the Merchants to export so much money only as they coyn out of forreign Bullion they paying for the coynage upon shipping it for exportation

If any alteration were to be made in the standard we would propose to have the silver 11 ounces fine as the gold is & as both gold & silver are in France & Spain & the pound weight be cut into 61s 6d, that the value of the coyn may remain the same. For the silver would weare something better & in valuing our money in Forreign countries the old 2dwt is apt to be neglected

And it may be considered whether it would not be of some advantage to us to coyn some pieces of the same value & name with Rix Dollers Ecus or Pistoles for the advantage of travellers who are sometimes abroad constrained to putt off our crowns at the same value with forreign crowns or Dollers for want for crowns or Dollers of the same value with those abroad

<75r>

Silver pence & two pences as so small as easily to be lost & {sewe} for little else then curiosities& for children to play with & if they be in use they quickly weare away. It may be considered therefore whether it would not be better to coyn copper pence in their stead. And to make the three pences groats & so six pences a little narrower & thicket that they may wear longer

[2]

[1] writt in 1701.

[2]

1666

12

1688

13

1701

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Professor Rob Iliffe
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Scott Mandelbrote,
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