[from History of IoM, 1900]



§ 1 . Condition of the People

A WRITER of the latter part of the seventeenth century has left on record the extraordinary statement that Manx lawyers got no fees, and Manx beggars no alms, " for none of them are there." 1 If we had only this statement to guide us in forming our conclusions as to the condition of the Manx people during the period now under consideration, we might well suppose that it was one of great prosperity. Unfortunately there is indubitable evidence to show, not only that the alleged absence of beggars was imaginary, but that the circumstances of the native inhabitants in general were far from enviable.

Laws regulating wages

One of the chief objects of legislative activity after the Restoration was the regulation of the labourers’ wages and work. The legislation of 1655 on this, as on other subjects, being that of a " Usurped Government," was repealed, but it was re-enacted in 1665, with considerable additions. Thus, all labourers who were set to work compulsorily by the juries had to accept the same wages as those fixed in 1609.2 It is clear, however, that those who were willing to work could command much higher wages than these. Indeed, according to the Statute of 1667, by which wages were attempted to be fixed at a slightly higher rate than in 1609, 3 they were not willing to work unless they got " double " 4 the rates of 1609, and we actually find, in this very year, farm labourers getting from £2 to £4, and maid-servants from 30s. to £2. 5 To palliate their action in passing these laws the Manx legislators prefaced them with the statement that the farmer was quite unable to pay even so high a rate of wages as in 1609, because " of the scarcity of money and the cheap rates both of corn and cattle," 4 and, at the same time, they pointed out that the servants were " in a better condition to subsist, by the cheapness of cloath, both woolen and linen, and all other comodities they stand in need of." 6

Were rarely enforced.

.They also stated that the wages established in 1609 were general, not only " for such servants as were made by Jurys and yarding," 6 and it was ordered that no " certain wages " were to be given " above the rates and in manner aforesaid, unless it were by way of bounty." 7 The facts, however, by no means correspond with these statements, and there is evidence to show that even the yarded servants got more than the wages fixed by law.

Wages in 167l and 1691

The next regulation of wages was in 1679, when it was enacted that " every mower doing his work sufficiently 8 . . . shall receive for his day’s work or wages . . . with sufficient meat and drink four pence a day, or without meat and drink, at the farmer’s choice, twelve pence a day." 9 If any mowers refused to work at this rate, they were to be fined and punished at the Court’s discretion, and, if the farmers gave more than this rate, they were to be fined. This was confirmed in 1691, when further regulations were made. Thus, the linen weavers were to receive twopence a yard, 120 yards being reckoned as 100.10 This rate of payment was better than that of 1609, but tailors, fullers, and woollen weavers were not to have any more than in that year. The wages of day labourers, such as " Gardeners, Hedgers, Reapers of corn, Haymakers," &c., which were not mentioned in 1609, were fixed at 2d. a day, with meat and drink, and 4d. without.10

The masons, carpenters, shipwrights, hoopers, and thatchers, were also allotted the same wages, with meat and drink, as in 1609, but, without meat and drink, they were allowed 8d. a day. 11 The same penalty as in 1609 was inflicted for giving higher wages than the above, but, doubtless with the view of inducing artizans and labourers to come to the island, it was provided that " for the encouragement of such artificers, handycraftmen and labourers, as do come here out of England, Ireland, and other places from beyond the sea to reside and work in this Isle [they] shall, notwithstanding this Act, have and receive for their work and wages by the day, so much as the Governor and the Lord’s Councefl shall think fitt to sett down and allow." 12

Hours of labour fixed

At the same time, the hours of labour were fixed by Statute, as follows : between the 25th of March and the 29th of September, they were to be from six in the morning to six in the evening, and, for the rest of the year, from sunrise to sunset. Tailors and shoemakers, " who do work with meat and drink," 13 continued their labours till eight in the evening, both winter and summer. It is probable that this Act was as futile as its predecessors, for no further attempts were made to regulate wages, 14 which, for lay labourers, were usually 5d. or 6d. a day, and, for mowers, 8d. to 1s. Nevertheless, the labourers were, still about 1710, very little better off than serfs, since the Legislature, which was mainly composed of landlords and employers of labour, still continued. to restrain their liberty by various regulations.

Stringent regulations about apprentices, &c.

Thus, in 1665, it was ordained that no one was to take an apprentice " without such apprentice, vith sufficient surety, do first enter into a penalty by bond to the Lord’s use in the sum of tenn pounds at the least to serve for the time, term and space of of five years." 15 Apprentices were not allowed to marry till a year after their service had expired, without a licence from the bishop ; 16 and, in 1667, it having been complained that " Servants do assume the liberty to absent themselves frequently on Sundays and Holy Days from looking after their master’s goods, and other concerns, without their masters lycence,"16 the master was authorized to deduct 2d. from their wages for every such offence. Even as late as the beginning of the eighteenth century the sage Manx legislators attempted to keep wages down and to secure their supply of labour by stringently enforcing the old laws against any one leaving the island without the governor’s licence, and, further, by ordering that, even if this licence were obtained, no one should be allowed to go unless he had a certificate from his minister, the captain of his parish, and the jury of servants, that there was no need for his labour. 17

But the period when Manxmen could be restrained in this way had come to an end, for it is evident that this regulation produced no effect. In 1713, when it was embodied in an Act of Tynwald, the legislature had to confess that " of late years the servants of this Island, both men and women, as soon as they attain to the age of sixteen or seventeen years, and fit to serve in the country, do, under the notion of necessity or other pretence, obtain lycence, and serve their whole lives in other countrys . . . whereby this Island is no better than a nursery for other places, and the usefull servants going off, and but a few left besides such depraved, useless or inactive people who are rather a burthen than any real service to the Island." 18 From this state of things they prophesied would " inevitably ensue the utter decay, not only of husbandry and tillage, but also of all kind of trade." 19

Labour laws practically obsolete after 1710.

They failed, however, to see that this state of affairs had arisen owing to their unjust labour laws. When these had become obsolete, owing to the increased demand for labour 20 between 1710 and 1765, prosperity soon returned.

Wages in and after 1727.

In 1727, the various kinds of labours were paid, with food, as follows:

Thatching, shearing, and drying malt, four pence; hacking briars, threshing, serving masons, garden work, " topping the folds," making " sugganes" (straw-ropes), "gorsing hedges," setting potatoes, two pence. For a whole year men get thirty shillings and girls twenty shillings. All these wages were with " keep." 21 After the famine and other troubles between 1739 and 1744, 22 wages rose, labourers getting from 6d. to 8d. per day, carpenters 1s. 5d. to 1s. 6d., and masons 1s. 6d. to1s. 9d., all without " keep," but they fell again before 1765. 23

First steps to free labour

The first step that the Legislature took in the direction of freeing labour was in 1748, when they repealed the privileges of certain offices in " obtaining servants by the yard." This law, however, only remained in force for three years, and so yarding continued 24 till it was abolished in 1777. 25

In 1763, it was ordained that servants’ wages were to be paid in preference to all demands but rent. 26

To complete our estimate of the position of the labouring class, let us now give the prices of food, &c.27

Prices of food etc.

It would seem that shortly after the Restoration prices were generally lower than during the period 1642-60. Thus, we find that wheat was 18s. a quarter, geese 4d. each, hens 2d., butter ½d. a pound, eggs 1d. per dozen. Beef at 6s. a quarter 28 was, perhaps, lower, while mutton at 1s. 6d. a side was about the same. The cost of living at this time may be guessed at from the fact that, in 1681 a meal, accompanied by a quart of wine and two quarts of beer, cost eightpence.29 There was not much change in these prices till the beginning of the eighteenth century, when, according to Bishop Wilson, " the great resort of strangers has made provisions of all kinds as dear again as formerly." 30 Between 1690 31 and 1737, wheat varied from 18s. to 28s. per quarter, barley from 16s. to 28s., and oats from 8s. to 18s. Sheep from 1s. to 3s. each, lambs from 6d. to 2s., hens 2d. each, chickens 1d., eggs 10 to 18 for a 1d., horses from 14s. to 20s., cows and bullocks from 25s. to 43s., coals from 10s. to 15s. per ton. Brandy and claret were usually about 10d. a quart.32 Till 1737, except for the influence of the unsettled condition of the land question before 1704, and of the smuggling since that date, there had been nothing which seriously affected wages and prices. But in that year, and for several years after it, the islanders were subjected to a series of calamities.

Disastrous years between 1737 and 1745.

They began with "a cold and fever 33 which carried off very many in all parts of the Island." 34

Pestilence, famine and dearth

Then the summer of 1739 35 was a very dry one, so much so that Bishop Wilson spoke of the earlier part of it as having been the " severest drought " 36 that he ever remembered, and, he added, " a great deal of corn will never be mowed or reaped ; and the poor farmers, not being able to dispose of their cattle, will many of them be ruined." 36 This forecast turned out to be only too accurate, and the condition of the Manx people was aggravated by an embargo on the exportation of corn from England, 37 where a similar state of things prevailed. Famine was soon to have its usual attendant, pestilence, in the form of " a violent epidemical flux and diarrhoea, " 38 which, from November, 1739, until the spring of 1742, " continued to carry off a great many, especially on the south side." 38 To make matters worse, the winter of 1739-40 was terribly cold, and the harvest in 1740 was again a poor one. After it, a requisition was issued by the Council 39 requiring such people as had corn to bring it in for sale, but there was little to be had, because the farmers preferred keeping it, either for their own necessities or in hopes of a still more extreme price, wheat being then at 8s. or 9s. a bushel, barley 5s., oats 2s. and 2s. 6d. 40 At this crisis, Bishop Wilson came to the rescue, and, partly from his own crops and partly by what he purchased, was able to " support several hundred families." 41 To the poor round Bishop’s Court he distributed the corn gratuitously, and, in the town, he sold it at " half the prime cost, but only to poor people, and not above two pecks to any one body." 41 Notwithstanding his noble efforts, the distress continued to be very great, so that early in January, 1741, the people of Douglas petitioned 42 the deputy-governors (Mylrea and Taubman) asking that some measures should be taken to relieve them. Shortly after this, a vessel with a cargo of Welsh oats consigned to Dumfries was forced into Douglas harbour by contrary winds, and the people there boarded the vessel and seized the corn. " But," says an eye-witness, " this action, though riotous, was conducted with good order, for they sold it out at the prime cost, paid the master his freight, according to his bill of lading, and obliged themselves to be accountable to the proprietor for the value of his corn." 43 This corn afforded relief till the following month, when they again petitioned the deputy-governors, showing that Douglas was more in need of relief than the other towns. In consequence of these representations, the deputy-governors and Council ordered that the farmers should bring their corn to market, and they forbade the malting of barley.

Unfortunately this was " all to no effect, for, not-withstanding all these endeavours of the Government, the scarcity of corn grows every day more sensible and afflicting," 44 especially to the inhabitants of Douglas, where there were " above a thousand souls that depend on the markets for the subsistence of life." 45

At last, as a result of a petition to King George from Dr. Wilson, the bishop’s son, the embargo which existed on the exportation of provisions from England was taken off, and, in April, a vessel laden with corn, which had been purchased by the Duke of Atholl, arrived. But the relief would appear to have been only partial, since, in the following June, Bishop Wilson writes : " We have had, and have even yet, a dreadful time of it. If we had not had the order in Council, 46 many, very many, must have died for want of food ; and, even as it is, many will find it difficult to see the first week in August, which is the earliest time we can hope for the least new corn."47 An excellent harvest at last put an end to the famine. Yet there were more troubles to come : 1743 was a year of " contagious fever, many dying, and whole families taking it." 48 The harvest of 1744 was so badly saved, that the people would have been reduced to as great straits as in 1740, if they had not been able to get corn from England and Wales, though at a very high price.49 Owing to the wet season 50 and the consequent badness of the fodder many of the cattle and sheep were lost, so that the prices of live stock, as well as of corn, rose, sheep costing from 3s. 6d. to 5s., and cows, from £2 l0s. to £3 l0s. 51 These prices were again reduced before 1765.


The legislation of 1637 with regard to limiting the number of public-houses 52 does not appear to have been strictly enforced, seeing that, thirty years later, they were very numerous, many of them being kept by clergymen. 53 It is probable, however, that most of the drink sold before the advent of the smugglers consisted of mild beer (jough).

Ale-houses continue to increase in numbers

By the end of the century the number of the ale-houses had still further increased, so that, in 1690, we find the Keys and others stating in a petition to the governor that this increase would not only impoverish the people " by the unnecessary and very unprofitable consumption " 54 of their corn and grain, but would " like-wise occasion excessive drunkenness." 54

Vain efforts to check this.

The governor consequently ordered the coroner in each sheading " with the assistance of the Captain and ministers of the respective parishes . . . to set down the names of a reasonable number of the most sufficient House-keepers . . . who were qualified and of good ability to sell ale and continue their licenses, having befitting entertainment for strangers and travellers, and also for their horses." Nothing, however, seems to have resulted from this, for, in 1714, complaint was again made of " the unlimited number of ale-houses . . . whereby many of the people are of late become not only tipplers, but also infamous for sottishness and drunkenness." 54 In 1728, a number of people were fined for setting up unlicensed houses,54 and, as the number of " Petty Ale-houses and Tippling-houses " 55 still increased, they were limited to 200 by Act of Tynwald in 1734, which imposed a penalty for retailing beer, ale, wine, or other liquors without a licence, and ordered the ministers, captains of parishes, coroners, and the Great Enquest to name those who were fit to hold licences. 56 The number thus fixed was raised to 300 in 1740.57 As to the people’s habits respecting drink, we are told, at the end of the seventeenth century, that they were rather too much given to inordinate consumption of beer.58

Effect of smuggling on drink.

Then came smuggling, and, with it, the introduction of ardent spirits, with the result that, a quarter of a century later, " the only diversion of the better sort of people is drinking . . . the best wines, and rum, and brandy, being excessively cheap."59 No doubt the poorer people also indulged in the two latter.

With regard to the provision made for the intellectual needs of the people, it may be remarked that the library which was in existence in Fairfax’s time appears to have been continued.


At any rate, in 1715, Charles Stanley, who had been governor of the island, left his books to what he called " the library of the Isle of Man." 60 Besides this, there were the parochial libraries founded by Bishop Wilson, which have since been so sadly neglected, notwithstanding the strict regulations for their preservation made by Act of Tynwald in 1734. 61

Let us now summarize what contemporary writers have to say about the condition of the Manx people at this epoch.

Statements of contemporary writers about the Manx people.

Denton, writing in 1681, remarks upon the " nakedness of their lands as well as of their habitations." 62 A significant token of their primitive condition is afforded by the fact that, in 1695, there was a " generall want of chimneys 63 throughout the Isle, and more especially in the Markett and other towns."64 The owners of houses wanting chimneys were ordered to make them under penalty of a fine of ten shillings.

Sacheverell, who held the offices of governor and deputy-governor during part of the last ten years of the seventeenth century, says that the country was poor and that this poverty was " occasioned by a thin soil, and unfruitful blasts, from the sea air, and the want of experience, rather than that of labour in the people." 65 He remarks, however, that, though " there are few that can be properly said to be rich, so neither are there many that can be said to be miserably poor," 66 and that there were " fewer beggars in proportion than in any nation." 66 In 1706, the " poverty and mean circumstances of the people " 67 are referred to in an Act of Tynwald.

Waldron, writing in 1726, mentions that the greater number " of both sexes went barefoot, except on Sundays, or when they are at work in the field, and have then only small pieces of cow’s or horse’s hide at the bottom of their feet tyed on with pack thread, which they call carranes," 68 but shoelessness is not necessarily a token of poverty. Their food was "commonly herrings, and potatoes," 68 their houses were " no more than cabins built of sods, and covered with the same, except a few belonging to the better sort of farmers, which are thatched with straw," 69 and knives, forks, and spoons were but little used. 70

Poor relief

Some attention seems to have been paid at the end of the seventeenth century to the question of the relief of the poor, since we find that, in 1692, an Act was passed which ordained the provision of a " public work house," where " all lazie persons, vagabonds, and all public beggars, all fornicators, drunkards," &c.,71 were to be confined. In this house " there was to be a room sufficient for a matron-like woman to teach children to spin and for a weaver to teach to weave and dress flax gratis." 71 It was, in fact, a combination of a poor-house, an industrial home, and a house of correction.

Such legislation was certainly in advance of the time. We do not know whether this institution was established then or not, but it was certainly not in existence a few years later.

The Towns

Of the condition of the towns at this time no special description has been preserved, except in the case of Douglas.


By 1681, it had become the " place of the greatest resort in the whole Island, because the haven is commodious . . . unto which the ffrenchmen and other iforaigners are use to repair," 72 and this was still the case forty years later, when Bishop Wilson pronounced it to be ‘ ‘ much the richest town, the best market, and most populous of any in the whole island." 73 This growing importance of Douglas was evidently considered disadvantageous to the other towns, since there were complaints from Castletown and Peel that the farmers neglected them, " whereby," say the inhabitants of Castletown, " this metropolis, the place of your Honor’s [the governor] and the officers’ residence scarcely appears to be a market town, which exposes us to the contempt and ridicule of all strangers." 74 Another petition some years later was to the effect that the farmers should " be compelled to come to their market, instead of going to Douglas." 75 A similar complaint came from Peel, in accordance wih which the governor ordered that the parishioners of Patrick, German, Michael, and Ballaugh " should keep the ordinary and usual market and market days," 75 and send their produce to that town.


All that we hear of Ramsey tends to show that it had scarcely recovered from its practical destruction by the sea about 1630. We learn from a petition of the inhabitants that there had been a partial recovery owing to " a Herring fishing falling in that town," but that it was " now " (i.e., in 1691) " again wholly decayed." 76 They urged that, as their position was so insecure Owing to the risk of the houses " being destroyed by the violence of the waves," 76 it would not be just to ask them to sign leases for fore than a year. This insecurity evidently coninued, for, as late as 1721, we find the lord granting a " benevolence " of £10 towards protecting the town rom the sea. 76

The method of governing the towns.

As to the government of the towns, they were ach, at this time, as probably also before it, nder the rule of a captain who had, to quote the rords of his commission, ‘ ‘ full power and authority ) command the peace, suppress riots, commit Ffenders, and, either by himself, if occasion so quire, or by the assistance of his soldiers," 77 to execute all civil actions, arrests, rules, orders, judgements, processes, assistances, and other proceedings of the several courts, both at law and in equity." 78

Their filthy condition.

Judging from the evidence which has been preserved, the towns seem to have been very filthy. Thus, in 1701, it was recorded that their inhabitants did not keep them " in that decency and cleanlyness they ought to do."79 They were therefore ordered " to cause their streets as farr as their rents extend to be cleanly swept," 79 and, at the same time, they were forbidden to keep cows in the streets, or to permit their pigs to stray from the back-yards. The soldiers in each town, who were supposed to perform the duties of police, were ordered to see that these regulations were complied with. 79 It was not till 1713, when it was ordered that " all pavements in streets and market towns shall be even and regularly paved " 80 by the inhabitants, that the Legislature undertook the regulation of such matters. We find frequent records of fines inflicted for infringing magisterial regulations requiring the people to keep their streets clean; and, in 1714, a Douglas man had to be ordered "to take away a midden [dung-heap] out of the street." 79


Of the health of the people, whether in town or country, we learn nothing directly, except between 1739 and 1742, but, from scattered entries in the parish registers, we should infer that the population was all but decimated every few years by small-pox, " flux," the " falling sickness," 81 and dysentery. Of these the most deadly was small-pox, which, in 1724, killed more than one-tenth of the population of Ramsey and Maughold. 82 In 1675, and between 1737 and 1741, many died of flux, and in 1743 a " contagious fever " was equally deadly. The use of sanitary precautions of any kind is not recorded, and they were probably unknown.


Under these circumstances it is not likely that the population was large, and, indeed, we find that in the first, and probably very inaccurate, attempt at a census, in 1726, it was 14,426 only. It is interesting to note that of this number only 2,530 were in the towns. Of these Douglas was slightly the most populous with 810, Castletown having 785, while Peel had 475 and Ramsey 460. The next census was in 1757, when the population had increased to 19,144, that in the towns being 4,416, of which Douglas had 1,814, Castletown 915, Ramsey 882, and Peel 805.83

Effect of the clause relating to foreign debt

It may be mentioned here that the clause in one of the Acts passed in 1737, by which any person prosecuted in the island for a foreign debt by an act of arrest in the Court of Chancery " shall for the future be held to bail only for his personal appear-ance to such action, and for the forthcoming of what effects he hath within this island to answer the judgment upon the same," 84 had the unfortunate effect of rendering Man the sanctuary of a most undesirable class of residents, who, by coming to it, avoided the payment of the debts for which they had become liable before their arrival there. These people spent a considerable quantity of money in the island, and therefore contributed to the rise of prices and to the prosperity of the Manx farmers and tradesmen. At the same time, however, they, being for the most part lax and dissolute characters, did much to demoralize the Manx people, whose integrity had already been undermined by indulgence in smuggling.



1 Historiæ Scotiæ Nomenclatura, Christopher Irvine, 1682 (Train, vol. ii. p. 227).

2 Statutes, vol. i. p. 123.

3 In 1609, a ploughman got 13s. 4d., a driver lOs., and a horseman 8s. ; and in 1667 they were fixed at 15s. for a plough-man, and, presumably, the others in proportion, while maid servants were to get 9s., and " Household-Fisherman " 13s.

4 Statutes, vol. i. p. 132.

5 In 1663, day-labourers were paid 2d., and joiners and masons 6d. There is no record of the day-labourers’ pay in 1609. (Lib. Scacc.)

6 Statutes, vol. i. p. 132. Note that at this period the farmers usually boarded the labourers. A careful examination of the prices given in the Records and elsewhere does not bear out the allegations of the Keys as regards live stock, though corn between 1660 and 1700 was not much above what it had been early in the century. There is no doubt, however, that, for causes which are imperfectly understood, the last forty years of the seventeenth century was a bad time for the Manx farmer (see pp. 923-4).

7 Ibid., p. 133.

8 Half an acre, or a " daymath," was the amount a man was supposed to be able to cut in a day.

9 Statutes, vol. i. p. 137. The allowance here for " meat and drink " seems very large. This work was paid at a higher rate than ordinary labour.

10 Statutes, vol. i. pp. 148-49. It would appear from a paper containing some queries of Lord Derby’s in 1705 that, till 1691, it had been the practice to pay those who worked for the lord half wages only-—a gross injustice—but that workmen had then protested that " by reason of the dearness and scarcity of provisions, &c., . . . they could not subsist on halfe wages as formerly." This paper also states that it was " provided by a clause in the Act for establishing wages in the year 1691, that this practice was to cease," but, if so, the clause referred to has been omitted from the Act.

11 Statutes, vol. i. p. 149. This payment of wages without food enables us to compare the wages paid in Man with those paid in England at this time. The Manx artizans got 8d., and the English is., and the Manx labourers 4d., while the English got 8d., a difference which the probably greater cost of living in England would by no means altogether do away with. The price of wheat in England at this time was 13s. 4d. per quarter, which was somewhat lower than in 1609. For prices in Man during this period see pp. 399—400.

12 Statutes, vol. i. p. 150.

13 Ibid., p. 149. These workmen went from house to house as engaged till quite a recent period.

14 According to Train (vol. ii. p. 111) wages were raised by an act in 1763, but no such Act can be found.

15 Statutes, vol. i. p. 129. This would apply to those in trade rather than to agricultural labourers.

16 Ibid., p. 132.

17 Lib. Scacc., 1704.

18 Statutes, vol. i. p. 191. This Act has never been repealed.

19 In addition to the ordinance of 1704 there were clauses enacted that persons wishing to leave the island had to produce certificates showing that they had never been in service, or that, if they had, they were obliged to show that they were twenty-five years of age, and had served for seven years (Statutes, vol. i. p. 191).

20 Chiefly because of smuggling.

21 From a MS. contemporary diary.

22 See pp. 401-4.

23 The rates of fees fixed by the Tynwald Court in 1748 gives an indication of the rate of wages. Thus a labouring man got 4d. for loss of time and 1d. for each parish he passed through (Statutes, vol. i. p. 251).

24 In 1763 the wages of yarded servants were increased to 40s. for a man-servant, and 20s. for a maid-servant.

25 Statutes, vol. i. p. 305.

26 Ibid., vol. i. pp. 293-4.

27 Information from the Records and private diaries.

28 1,e., a quarter of the animal.

29 Denton’s MS.

30 Wilson (Manx Soc., vol. xviii. p.111).

31 In 1696, when corn was scarce, the price of barley and wheat was fixed at 28s. and of oats and rye at 18s. per quarter (Lib Scacc.).

32 Denton’s MS.

33 No doubt " Russian influenza."

34 Bishop Wilson, MS. letter.

35 This dry period lasted with scarcely an interval till 1762.

36 Letter to his son, dated July 15th (Keble, p. 802).

37 In 1739, William Quayle, on behalf of himself and others, petitioned the Crown for leave to import 1,200 qrs. of barley, 700 qrs. of oats, and 600 qrs. of wheat or flour, but we do not know with what result (Loose Papers. Knowsley).

38 Letter from Bishop Wilson to his son, dated July 15, 1742 (Keble, p. 804).

39 Lib. Scacc.

40 Bishop Wilson’s Sacra Privata (Keble, p. 803).

41 Keble, p. 803

42 They remarked that the dearth had proceeded " not so much from the real want of corn in the Island, as from the wicked and mercenary views of those who conceal it . . . to extort an unreasonable and extravagant price " (Rotul).

43 Rev. Philip Moore, MS. letter.

44 Rev. Philip Moore, MS. letter, March 17, 1741.

45 Ibid., MS. letter of March 17, 1741. In March another vessel laden with oats arrived at Castletown, when its contents were taken possession of by the people, and sold at prime cost.

46 For taking off the embargo.

47 Bishop Wilson’s letter. (Keble, p. 808.)

48 Ibid., MS. letter.

49 Manx farmers were getting 60s. per quarter for barley during this year.

50 Bishop Wilson, from whose letters this information is derived, writing in June, 1745, remarks that there had been " scarce three days together without rain or snow since September last " (Cruttwell, vol. i. p. lxxxii.)

51 Lib. Scacc., 1743—60.

52 See p. 303. They were probably, for the most part, merely ale-houses.

53 In 1667 Bishop Barrow called the clergy to account for disgracing " their callinge . . . by vendinge ayle and beer and keeping victuallinge houses " (Sodor and Man, p. 156, note).

54 Lib. Scacc.

55 Statutes, vol. i. pp. 206-7. These licences cost 2s. 6d., 14d. of which went to the governor’s clerk, 7d. to the comptroller, and 9d. to the Keys " for reparation of their house, and to find other necessarys at the time of their meetings."

56 Ibid.

57 Statutes, vol. i. p. 243,

58 Sacheverell (Manx Soc., vol. i., Introduction, p. 7).

59 Waldron (Manx Soc., vol. xi. pp. 50-1). Cases are recorded in the parish Registers of men falling down dead from drinking brandy. In England, in 1726, six gallons of spirits per head of the population were drunk annually, and between that date and 1751 the quantity largely increased.

60 Will of Charles Zedensee Stanley (Knowsley Muniments, 16/22).

61 Statutes, vol. i. pp. 208-9.

62 MS. He notices that " some gentry do frequently retire hither from Ireland for privacy and parsimony if they have before lived too fast." Camden (Britannia, 1695) also gives an account of the people, but it appears to be mainly taken from what Blundell wrote about them fifty years before.

63 Chimneys were first introduced in England in 1584.

64 Lib. Scacc.

65 Manx Soc., vol. i., Introduction, p. 6. Here he disagrees with Denton.

66 Ibid., p. 7.

67 Statutes, vol. i. p. 181,

68 Waldron (Manx Soc., vol. xi. p. 51).

69 Ibid., p. 2.

70 Ibid., p. 48. He notes that the first course at a Manx feast was always broth, which was " served up in wooden piggins " (Ibid., p. 49). Forks were first introduced into England about the beginning of the seventeenth century.

71 Knowsley Muniments, 719/18. This Act is not in the Statute Book,

72 Denton’s MS. This is confirmed by the comparative amounts of customs duties. Thus, in 1690, those of Peel were £16 5s. 3d., of Ramsey, £13 8s. l0d., of Castletown, £7 0s. 6d., those of Douglas being £31 0s. 7d. (MS. Seneschal’s Office).

73 Manx Soc., vol. xviii. p. 102.

74 Douglas, on the other hand, objected to these restrictions. See Appendix A ; also Lib. Scacc. 1703, 1746, 1747, &c,

75 See Lib. Scacc. 1703, 1746, 1747, &c.

76 Rolls Office (Loose Papers).

77 He was also Captain of the garrison,

78 Lib. Irrot.

79 Lib. Scacc.

80 Statutes, vol. i p. 195. We shall see later, p. 564. that there do not seem to have been any pavements in existence before 1510,

81 The " sweating " sickness is also mentioned as occurring Ln the eighteenth century, which is curious, since it was not known in England later than 1551.

82 It is said not to have been known in the island before 1685, when, according to tradition, it was introduced by one William Killey, who was consequently called Brack Willy Killey, or ‘ Spotted Willy Killey." The first who died of it in that year was Mrs. Jane Corlett, of Lezayre (Monumental Inscriptions, Manx, Soc., vol. xiv. p. 58). The following will serve as instances of its ravages : Per thousand : In Lezayre, 23.1 in 1714, 50 in 1733, and 28.0 in 1741 ; in Ramsey and Maughold, 102.2 in 1724 ; in German and Peel, 88.0 in 1724 (these figures are founded on the census of 1726). There were also epidemics in 1704, 1732, and 1760. In Ballaugh, between September 1, 1713, and April 21, 1714, 36 died from small-pox and 30 from other causes ; and, in 1725, 30 died from small-pox and 17 from other causes,

83 Appendix B, p. 646.

84 Statutes, vol. i. p. 216.


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