English cloth and other English merchandise made of wool is forbidden

Our sovereign lord and estates of this present parliament ratify, approve and confirm the act made at Dundee, 13 May the year of God 1597 regarding the importation of English cloth, of the which the tenor follows: The which day the king's majesty, his nobility, council and estates presently convened, foreseeing the great hurt and inconvenience which the commonwealth of this realm daily sustains through the unprofitable trade used by merchants in the importation of English cloth and other English wares and merchandise made of wool, the same cloth having only for the most part a superficial outward appearance, wanting the substance and strength which ofttimes it appears to have, and being one of the chief causes of the transporting of all gold and silver out of this realm and consequently of the great scarcity and present dearth of the coin now current within the same, seeing that kind of exchange cannot well be maintained by any lawful trade or other wares or merchandise to be transported out of this realm, which by the laws of the same are not already prohibited and forbidden. And therefore his majesty, with advice of his said nobility, council and estates foresaid, has thought fit and convenient to restrain the importation within this realm of all English cloth or other English wares or merchandise made of wool in time coming, and ordains his highness's lieges of what estate, quality or degree that ever they be of that none of them take upon hand to buy or bring home within this realm to be sold any kind of English cloth or other wares or merchandise made of wool at any time hereafter, under the pain of confiscation of the same cloth and merchandise and all other moveable goods of the importers to his majesty's use. The which act our said sovereign lord and estates foresaid ordain to stand as a law in all time coming.

  1. NAS, PA2/15, f.68r. Back