The Excise Bill of 1733 was a proposal by the British government of Robert Walpole to impose an excise tax on a variety of products. This would have allowed Customs officers to search private dwellings to look for contraband untaxed goods. The perceived violation of the Rights of Englishmen provoked widespread opposition and the bill was eventually withdrawn. Whig opposition MP William Pitt took the lead in criticising the proposal, invoking the concept that an "Englishman's house is his castle".
Walpole proposed the bill while at the height of his powers, during the Whig Ascendency, but its defeat was an early sign of the waning of his dominance over British politics which came to an end in 1742. Opposition Tory Mps were joined by the emerging Patriot Whigs to oppose the measure, signalling an alliance between these two forces.
Much of the ideology and arguments used against the bill in Britain, later influenced American resistance to the Stamp Act. Like the opposition to the Excise Bill, this focused on the argument that governments had a right to tax external trade through customs, but not to interfere in private exchanges by British subjects.
The Whigs were a political faction and then a political party in the parliaments of England, Scotland, Great Britain, Ireland and the United Kingdom. Between the 1680s and 1850s, the Whigs contested power with their rivals, the Tories. The Whigs merged into the new Liberal Party in the 1850s, though some Whig aristocrats left the Liberal Party in 1885 to form the Liberal Unionist Party, which merged into the Liberals' rival, the modern day Conservative Party, in 1912.
Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford,, known between 1725 and 1742 as Sir Robert Walpole, was a British statesman and Whig politician who is generally regarded as the de facto first prime minister of Great Britain.
The President, Directors and Company of the Bank of the United States, commonly known as the First Bank of the United States, was a national bank, chartered for a term of twenty years, by the United States Congress on February 25, 1791. It followed the Bank of North America, the nation's first de facto central bank.
The Whiskey Rebellion was a tax protest in the United States beginning in 1791 and ending in 1794 during the presidency of George Washington, ultimately under the command of American Revolutionary war veteran Major James McFarlane. The so-called "whiskey tax" was the first tax imposed on a domestic product by the newly formed federal government. Beer was difficult to transport and spoiled more easily than rum and whiskey. Rum distillation in the United States had been disrupted during the American Revolutionary War, and, for factors described below, whiskey distribution and consumption increased after the Revolutionary War. The "whiskey tax" became law in 1791, and was intended to generate revenue for the war debt incurred during the Revolutionary War. The tax applied to all distilled spirits, but consumption of US whiskey was rapidly expanding in the late 18th century, so the excise became widely known as a "whiskey tax". Farmers of the western frontier were accustomed to distilling their surplus rye, barley, wheat, corn, or fermented grain mixtures to make whiskey. These farmers resisted the tax. In these regions, whiskey often served as a medium of exchange. Many of the resisters were war veterans who believed that they were fighting for the principles of the American Revolution, in particular against taxation without local representation, while the federal government maintained that the taxes were the legal expression of Congressional taxation powers.
The Kingdom of Great Britain, officially called Great Britain, was a sovereign state in Western Europe from 1 May 1707 to 1 January 1801. The state came into being following the Treaty of Union in 1706, ratified by the Acts of Union 1707, which united the kingdoms of England and Scotland to form a single kingdom encompassing the whole island of Great Britain and its outlying islands, with the exception of the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. The unitary state was governed by a single parliament and government that was based in the Palace of Westminster, but distinct legal systems – English law and Scots law – remained in use in their respective jurisdictions.
John Russell, 1st Earl Russell,, known by his courtesy title Lord John Russell before 1861, was twice Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, serving from 1846 to 1852 as a Whig and from 1865 to 1866 as a Liberal.
William Pulteney, 1st Earl of Bath, was a British Whig politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1707 to 1742, when he was created the first Earl of Bath by King George II.
Spencer Compton, 1st Earl of Wilmington, was a British Whig statesman who served continuously in government from 1715 until his death. He sat in the English and British House of Commons between 1698 and 1728, and was then raised to the peerage and sat in the House of Lords. He served as the prime minister of Great Britain from 1742 until his death in 1743. He is considered to have been Britain's second prime minister, after Robert Walpole, but worked closely with the Secretary of State, Lord Carteret, in order to secure the support of the various factions making up the government.
The Tories were a political faction and then a political party in the parliaments of England, Scotland, Great Britain, Ireland and the United Kingdom. Between the 1670s and 1830s, the Tories contested power with their rivals, the Whigs.
William Talbot, 1st Earl Talbot, PC, known as the Lord Talbot from 1737 to 1761, was a British politician. Talbot was a notable figure among opposition Whig politicians during the reign of King George II before later coming to Court during the reign of his grandson, taking the office of Lord Steward of the Household.
Whiggism is a political philosophy that grew out of the Parliamentarian faction in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms (1639–1651). The Whigs' key policy positions were the supremacy of Parliament, tolerance of Protestant dissenters and opposition to a "Papist" on the throne, especially James II or one of his descendants.
Samuel Sandys, 1st Baron Sandys, was a British Whig politician who represented Worcester in the House of Commons from 1718 until 1743, when he was created Baron Sandys. He held numerous posts in the government of the United Kingdom, namely Chancellor of the Exchequer, Leader of the House of Commons, Cofferer of the Household and First Lord of Trade. He was also a justice in eyre.
Robert Dundas of Arniston, the Elder, 2nd Lord Arniston (1685–1753) was a Scottish lawyer, and Tory politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1722 to 1737. In 1728 he reintroduced into Scottish juries the possible verdicts of guilty or not guilty as against proven or not proven. He was Lord President of the Court of Session from 1748 to 1753.
A government budget is a document prepared by the government and/or other political entity presenting its anticipated tax revenues and proposed spending/expenditure for the coming financial year. In most parliamentary systems, the budget is presented to the lower house of the legislature and often requires approval of the legislature. Through this budget, the government implements economic policy and realizes its program priorities. Once the budget is approved, the use of funds from individual chapters is in the hands of government, ministries and other institutions. Revenues of the state budget consist mainly of taxes, customs duties, fees and other revenues. State budget expenditures cover the activities of the state, which are either given by law or the constitution. The budget in itself does not appropriate funds for government programs, which requires additional legislative measures.
Jonathan Charles Douglas Clark is a British historian of both British and American history. He received his undergraduate degree at Downing College, Cambridge. Having previously held posts at Peterhouse, Cambridge and All Souls College, Oxford into 1996, he has since held the Joyce C. and Elizabeth Ann Hall Distinguished Professorship of British History at the University of Kansas.
His or Her Majesty's Excise refers to 'inland' duties levied on articles at the time of their manufacture. Excise duty was first raised in England in 1643. Like HM Customs, the Excise was administered by a Board of Commissioners who were accountable to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury. While 'HM Revenue of Excise' was a phrase used in early legislation to refer to this form of duty, the body tasked with its collection and general administration was usually known as the Excise Office.
The Cobhamite faction were an 18th-century British political faction built around Richard Temple, 1st Viscount Cobham and his supporters. Among its members, the group included the future Prime Ministers William Pitt and George Grenville. They had a general Whig philosophy and were at first supporters of Prime Minister Sir Robert Walpole but later became opponents of his administration.
Henry Cunningham, of Boquhan, Gorgunnock, Stirling, was a Scottish Whig politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1709 to 1734. He was given the post of Governor of Jamaica, but died two months after landing there. A description of Cunningham appears in the introduction to Scott’s historical novel ‘’Rob Roy’’.
The Whig Split occurred between 1717 and 1720, when the British Whig Party divided into two factions. One in government, led by James Stanhope while the other in opposition was dominated by Robert Walpole. It coincided with a dispute between George I and his son George, Prince of Wales, with the latter siding with the opposition Whigs. It is also known as the Whig Schism.
The Peerage Bill was a 1719 measure proposed by the British Whig government led by James Stanhope, 1st Earl Stanhope and Charles Spencer, 3rd Earl of Sunderland which would have largely halted the creation of new peerages, limiting membership of the House of Lords.