|P. MEDOWS/ JA. BRUCE/ IS. NEWTON/ J. BRYDGES
Introduction by W. A Shaw,
REPORT OF THE COMPTROLLERS OF THE ACCOUNTS OF THE ARMY UPON THE MEMORIAL OF MR. BRYDGES'S RELATING TO THE REDUCTION OF THE CURRENT MONEY AT DUNKIRK INTO STERLING MONEY FOR THE PAYING OF THE FORCES THERE.
7th October, 1712.
To the Most Honbl. Robert Earl of Oxford and Earl Mortimer, Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain.
MAY IT PLEASE YOUR LORDSP.,—
In Obedience to your Lordship's Order of Reference Signified to Us by Mr. Taylour, the 21st August last, upon the annexed Memorial of Mr. Brydges for Directions as to the Rate that French Current money shall be Computed at for the Subsistence of Her Maties Forces in Dunkirk, and Yor. Lordp. Directing Us to Consult Sir Isaac Newton thereon.
We, the Comptrollers of the Accounts of the Army and Master Worker of Her Majesties Mint, Do humbly Report to Yor. Lordship That Twenty shillings Sterling pass at Dunkirk for Seventeen Livres, but are worth (Intrinsick Vallue) Nineteen Livres thirteen sols., which leaves a Loss of two Livres thirteen sols., or two shillings eight pence Sterling, Whereas in Flanders the loss is but about twelve Stivers, or One Shilling two pence Sterling (whereof about half was borne by the Queen), as appears by the Annexed Computation.
We further Observe to your Lordsp. That We cannot yet learne what may be the Loss of buying Bullion of the Merchants, and sending it to Dunkirk to be Coined at the next Mint for paying the Forces.
But We are Credibly Inform'd the Forces at Dunkirk are willing still to Accept of Small Bills by way of Antwerp, as has hitherto been practised, and upon the old Allowance, which seems to be Cheapest for Her Majesty, and may be Continued by the present Signe Manual till further Reason occurs to alter it.
We also offer to Your Lordships Consideration whether provisions may not be Sent from hence in part of their Subsistence.
All which is humbly submitted to Your Lordship.
COMPTROLLERS OFFICE, PRIVY GARDEN,
7th October 1712.
MAY IT PLEASE YOUR LORDSHIP,
Her Maties fforces in Dunkirk being to receive their subce in French Money, and there being yet noe direction or Authority for reducing the Same into Sterl. Money, whereby it might appear how much of that Currt. Money shall be pd. the fforces for the pound sterl., I humbly move your Lordship for proper Directions therein.
The directions wch regulate the rate of the Holland & Brabant Money are by her Maties Rovall Signe Manual, whereby I have all alonge pd. the subject troopes after the rate of 10 Guildrs. & 15 stivers for each pound sterl., as my Predecessor, Mr. ffox, did. And I am humbly of opinion it will be necessary that I have a like Authority for computing the ffrench Currt. Money.
All which is most humbly submitted to your Ldp.
19th Aug. 1712.
IN the course of Exchange, nine pounds sterling are recconed at a par with 100 Gilders specie money of Holland, or £1 wth 11 Gilders 2 2/9 Styvers. But £1 sterling lately passed in Holland only for 10 Gilders & 9 or 10 Styvers, or at a medium for 10 Gilders 91 styvers. The defect is 12 13/18 Styvers, wherof Her Majty allowed to the forces in Flanders 5½ Styvers, wch is almost one-half of the defect or loss by the exchange. The par between English and French money of the new species is not yet setled by the course of exchange, but by weight & assay I find that an unworn French crown piece of the new species, wch passes at Dunkirk & in France for five livres, is worth 5s. 1d. sterling. And at this rate 20s. sterling are worth 19livres 13 27/61 sous. But 20s. sterling pass at Dunkirk for only 17 livres. The defect or loss is 2 livres 1327/61 sous, to be divided between her Maty & the forces. And as 12 13/18 styvers [are] to 5½ styvers, so are 2 livres 13 27/61 sous to 1 livre 3 sous, her Majts proportional part of the defect: wch added to 17 livres, the current value of 20s. Sterling at Dunkirk, makes her Majts allowance for the pound sterling 18 livres 3 sous, recconing a French crown, new species, at 5 livres. But her Maty may alter the proportion at pleasure, & make the allowance in a rounder number.
When £9 sterling are recconed at a par with 100 Gilders as above, the specie money of Holland is overvalued by about 3¼ per cent. For the three Gilder piece unworn is worth only 62¾ pence sterling by the weight & assay. And thence 9 li. sterling are intrinsecally worth about 103¼ Gilders, & £ 1 sterling, wch lately passed at about 10 Gilders 9½ stivers, is worth 11 Gilders 9 4/9 stivers, and the loss by the exchange is about a Gilder, wherof her Maty bare only 5½ Stivers, wch is about a quarter of the whole loss. And according to this proportion her Maty should beare but a quarter of the loss by the exchange at Dunkirk. But the rules of the Exchange where they are setled being generally followed, I presume it might be her Majts intention to beareabout one-half of the loss by the Exchange in Holland, as in the recconing first set down in this paper.
Treasury Papers,vol. clii. No. 44/ 44a/ 44b.
Html-edition after William A. Shaw's edition in: William A. Shaw, Select Tracts and Documents Illustrative of English Monetary History 1626-1730 (London: Wilsons & Milne, 1896) [reprint: (New York: Augustus Kelley Publishers, 1967)], p.160-163 — webdesign: Olaf Simons, Sep. 2004.