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perhaps, upon strict enquiry that this mode of raising money was authorized in many wealthy towns, as well as in the capital; and that it was attended with beneficial effects, not only to the colony of Virginia, but likewise to the town itself where the lottery was held. In proof of this supposition I send you the following authentic extract from the Register of charitable Gifts to the Corporation of Reading :"—
Whereas at a Lottery held within the Borough of Reading in the Year of our Ld. God 1619, Gabriel Barber Gent. Agent in the sd. Lottery for the Councell & Company of Virginia, of his own good Will & Charity towarde poor Tradesmen ffreemen & Inhabitants of the sd. Borough of Reading, & for the better enabling such poor Tradesmen to support & bear their Charges in their several Places & Callings in the sd. Corporation from time to time for ever freely gave & delivered to the Mayor & Burgesses of this Corporation the sum of forty Pounds of lawfull Money of England Upon Special Trust & Confidence, that the sd. Mayor & Burgesses & their Successors shall from time to time for ever dispose & lend these 40I. to & amongst Six poor Tradesmen after the rate 06I. 13s. 4d. to each Man for the Term of five Years gratis And after those five Years ended to dispose & lend the sd. 40I. by Such Soms to Six other poor Tradesmen for other five Years & so from five years to five years Successively upon good Security for ever Neverthelesse provided & upon Condition that none of those to whom the sd. Summs of money shall be lent during that Term of five years shall keep either Inn or Tavern or dwell forth of the sd. Borough, but there during that time and terme, shall as other Inhabitants of the sd. Borough reside & dwell.
Memorand. that the sd. Sum of 40I. came not into the hands & charge of the Mayor & Burgesses until April 1626.
The writer then concludes with the following somewhat puzzling sentence: "If it be asked what is become of it now? gone, it is supposed, where the chickens went before during the pious Protectorship of Cromwell."
Hone in his "Everyday-Book" says that "in 1630, 6th Charles I., there was a project 'for the conveying of certain springs of water into London and Westminster, from within a mile and a half of Hodsdon, in Hertfordshire, by the undertakers, Sir Edward Stradling and John Lyde.' The author of this project was one Michael Parker. 'For defraying the expenses whereof, King Charles grants them a special licence to erect and publish a lottery or lotteries; according] says this record, 'to the course of other lotteries heretofore used or practised.' This is the first mention of lotteries either in the Fxdera or Statute-book. 'And for the sole privilege of bringing the said waters in aqueducts to London, they were to pay four thousand pounds per annum into the king's exchequer: and, the better to enable them to make the said large annual payment, the king grants them leave to bring their aqueducts through any of his parks, chases, lands, &c, and to dig up the same gratis.'" In 1653 there was a lottery at Grocers' Hall, which has escaped the observation of the earliest inquirers on this subject. In an old weekly paper, called Perfect Account of the Daily Intelligence, November 16-23, ^53) there is the following:—
At the Committee for Claims for Lands in Ireland, Ordered, that a Lottery be at Grocers-Hall, London, on Thursday 15 Decern. 1653, both for Provinces and Counties, to begin at 8 of the Clock in the forenoon of the same day; and all persons concerned therein are to take notice thereof. W. Tibbs.
After the Restoration, Charles, whose ideas of rewarding fidelity were always peculiar, granted plate lotteries " with a view to reward those adherents of the Crown who resided within the bills of mortality, and had served with fidelity during the interregnum." By this is to be understood a gift of plate from the Crown to be disposed of by lot, certain persons—most likely those who had no claim whatever on the score of fidelity—having the privilege of selling tickets. The Gazette tells us that in 1669 Charles II., the Duke of York, and many of the nobility were present "at the grand plate lottery, which, by his Majesty's command, was then opened at the sign of the Mermaid, over against the mews." Even if this had been a proper way to reward the faithful, the faithfullest must have felt it had been left rather late. From this plate lottery sprang many successors, the most noticeable of which was the Royal Oak, whose title explains itself. The rapid growth of the institution may be judged by the following, which, according to Anderson in his "History of Commerce," was published shortly after the drawing to which we have referred :—
'"pHIS is to give Notice, that any Persons who are desirous to farm
*■ any of the Counties within the Kingdom of England, or Dominion of Wales, in Order to the setting up of a Plate Lottery, or any other Lottery whatsoever, may repair to the Lottery Office, at Mr. Philips's Mouse, in Mermaid Court over against the Mews; where they may contract with the Trustees commissioned by his Majesties Letters Patent for the Management of the said Patent, on the Behalf of the truly Loyal Indigent Officers.
It is stated that "the Crown exceeded its prerogative by issuing these patents, and the law was not put in motion to question them." This was not the only point upon which the royal rights were extended, but the tide of loyalty had set in strongly, and Charles was not likely to miss any of the current's strength. Book lotteries were before this time much in fashion, and with the kinds which came in afterwards, were drawn at the theatres. At Vere Street theatre, which stood in Bear Yard, to which there was an entrance through a passage at the south-west corner of Lincoln's Inn Fields, another from Vere Street, and a third from Clare Market, Killigrew's company performed during the seasons of 1661 and 1662, and part of 1663, when they removed to the newly-built theatre in Drury Lane; the Vere Street theatre was then probably unoccupied until Mr Ogilby, the author of the "Itinerarum Anglian, or Book of Roads," adopted it, as standing in a populous neighbourhood, for the temporary purpose of drawing a lottery of books, which took place in 1668. Books were often the species of property held out as a lure to adventurers, by way of lottery, for the benefit of the suffering Loyalists. In the Gazette of May 18, 1668, is the following advertisement:—
TV/TR. Ogilby's Lottery of Books opens on Monday the 25th instant, at the old Theatre between Lincoln's Inn Fields and Verc street, where all Persons concerned may repair on Monday May 18, and see the Volumes, and put in their Money.
But the business being much better than was anticipated, the drawing had to be postponed, and so in the number of the Gazette for May 25 there is this :—
"l\/r R Ogilby's Lottery of Books (Adventurers coming in so fast that they cannot in so short Time be methodically registered) opens not till Tuesday the 2d of June; then not failing to draw; at the old Theatre between Lincoln's Inn Fields and Vere street.
Ogilby had had a venture before this, about which there seems to have been some little difficulty, as in his "Proposal" for this same lottery he refers to aspersions which have been made. A correspondent of the Gentleman's Magazine of nearly a hundred years ago gives as a curiosity even then a copy of this "Proposal," which, though rather long, is very interesting, and so we subjoin it:—
A SECOND PROPOSAL, by the Author, for the better and more speedy Vendition of several Volumes, (his own Works,) by the way of a standing Lottery, licensed by his Royal Highness the Duke of York, and Assistants at the Corporation of the royal Fishing.
WHEREAS John Ogilby, esq., erected a standing Lottery of Books, and completely furnished the same with very large, fair, and special Volumes, all of his own Designment and Composure, at vast Expense, Labour and Study of twenty Years j the like Impressions never before exhibited in the English Tongue. Which according to the appointed Time, on the 10th of May, 1665, opened; and to the general Satisfaction of the Adventurers, with no less Hopes of a clear Despatch and fair Advantage to the Author, was several Days in Drawing: when its Proceedings were stopt by the then growing Sickness and lay discontinued under the Arrest of that common Calamity, till the next Year's more violent and sudden Visitation, the late dreadful and surprising Conflagration, swallowed the Remainder, being two Parts of three, to the Value of three thousand Pounds and upward, in that unimaginable Deluge. Therefore, to repair in some Manner his so much commiserated Losses, by the Advice of so many his Patrons, Friends, and especially by the Incitations of his former Adventurers, he resolves, and hath already prepared, not only to reprint all his own former Editions, but others that are new, of equal Value, and like Estimation by their Embellishments, and never yet Published; with some remains of the first Impressions, Relics preserved in several Hands from the Fire ; to set up a second standing Lottery, where such the Discrimination of Fortune shall be, that few or None shall return with a dissatisfying Chance. The whole Draught being of greater Advantage by much (to the Adventurers) than the former. And accordingly, after Publication, the Author opened his Office, where they might put in their first Encouragements [viz.) twenty Shillings, and twenty more at the reception of their Fortune, and also see those several magnificent Volumes, which their varied Fortune (none being bad) should present them.
* But the Author now finding more difficulty than he expected, since many of his Promisers (who also received great Store of Tickets to dispose of, towards promotion of his Business) though seeming well resolved and very willing, yet straining Courtesy not to go foremost in paying their monies, linger out, driving it off till near the time appointed for Drawing; which Dilatoriness: (since Despatch is the soul and life to his Proposal, his only Advantage a speedy Vendition :) and also observing how that a Money Dearth, a Silver Famine, slackens and cools the Courage of Adventurers: through which hazy humours magnifying medium Shillings Ioome like Crowns, and each forty Shillings a ten round Heap. Therefore, according to the present Humour now reigning, he intends to adequate his Design; and this seeming too large-roomed, standing Lottery, modelled into many less and more likely to be taken Tenements, which shall not open only a larger Prospect of pleasing Hopes, but more real Advantage to the Adventurer. Which are now to be disposed of thus: the whole Mass of Books or Volumes, being the same without Addition or Diminution, amounting according to their known Value (being the Prices they have been usually disposed at) to thirteen thousand seven hundred Pounds ; so that the Adventurers will have the above said Volumes (if all are drawn) for less
* Whereas, some give out that they could never receive their Books after they were drawn in the first Lottery, the Author declares, and it will be attested, that of seven hundred Prizes that were drawn there were not six remaining Prizes that suffered with his in the Fire; for the Drawing being on the loth of May, 1665, the Office did then continue open for the Delivery of the same (though the Contagion much raged) until the latter End of July following; and opened again, to attend the Delivery, in April, 1666, whither Persons repaired daily for their Prizes, and continued open until the Fire.