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H. L., House of Lords; H. C., House of Commons; P. Ret., P. Rep., P. P.,
P. O., Parliamentary Return, Report, Paper, Ordinance, respectively; T. W.,
Treasury Warrant; C. 1 R., Commissioners' First Report; L. G., London
Gazette; G.I., General Instructions; E., England; S., Scotland; I., Ireland;
C. S. G., Civil Service Gazette; C., Civilian.

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HESE Papers have been written to afford a glance into the Excise,


as it was, as it is: its duties, its discipline. Those to which an asterisk is prefixed are long papers, in which from the nature of the subject treated, it seemed desirable to trace the history with some detail for the benefit of the inquirer, that in the case of fiscal duties he might be informed of their origin, continuance, commutation, reduction, repeal, revival, and, in the case of discipline, he might not be uninformed of the trials, triumphs and tributes of his predecessors, while, in the language of Pope, "The learn'd reflect on what before they knew."

To obtain the necessary facts I have had recourse to that incomparable store-house of written human wisdom, the British Museum Library, where, during a period of three years and several subsequent visits, I have made a systematic research, which has included every volume of Cobbett's Parliamentary History, Hansard, Parliamentary Papers, bearing on my subject, London Gazette, State Papers, Statutes, many local histories, besides hundreds of miscellaneous issues. I have gleaned numerous important facts from the Commissioners' Reports and Orders, the Civil Service Gazette, the Civilian, and other sources: I have communicated with every grade in the department: I have gone into graveyards in search of epitaphs, and into "back slums" in quest of songs: while, during the past six years, to economise sufficient time to complete my self-imposed task, I have to acknowledge my large indebtedness to an efficient and ever-obliging staff.

Under the impression that, if so many widely-scattered facts were brought within the compass of two covers, they would be acceptable to the department, I purpose, to publish in parts, of which the estimate is eight, to commence on November 20th, 1878, and to continue to do so on the 20th of each month afterwards, until completed, with a copious index.

Price per part Is., by post is. Id., or 5 copies and upwards at the uniform rate of is. post free, on receipt of P.O.O. payable at Linlithgow. An Order Form accompanies this part, which please fill up as requested, and return, addressed, JOHN OWENS, BELLEVUE, LINLITHGOW.

Appended is a portion of the list of the various Papers.

LINLITHGOW, November 20th, 1878.



The earliest forms of the word are these:


EXCYSE (S. Act, Aug. 4, 1621).

EXYSE (S. Act, Jan. 4, 1644).
EXCISE (Parl. Ord., 1643).
ExcYSIS (S. Act, June 4, 1650).
EXCISSE (S. Act, Oct. 8, 1663).
EXCIZE (I. 14 Caroli 2, c. 1).
EXIZE (29 Car. 2, c. 4).

ESSISE (1 Gule. and M., c. 24).

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EXCISUM, The excisum or part to be cut out and laid aside for public uses." (A Treatise of Tax and Contribution, 1662.) As used in an epitaph

XIS (Chambers' Fournal, 1873).

EXCISE is also found in the Bible, in the Book of Ezra as translated by Dr Benisch, and first in the Index to the Journal of the House of Commons in 1643; in the London Gazette, Sept. 10, 1666. (See Acts of Parliament).


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Its synonym was new impost" (12 Car. 2, c. 24). "An excise is only a word for a tax raised in a particular manner (Warner's "History of the Rebellion and Civil war in Ireland," 1767). In France it was early called

GABELLE (Smith's "Excises in France," 1733).

It was formerly used in the plural

EXCIZES ("Parliamentary Remonstrance," 1642).

EXCISES (Act of Union, 1707). Its equivalent—


EXCISEMAN, a name borne by a race-horse (Daily News, Aug. 5, 1870). The functionaries were termed—

EXCISERS ("Dutch Devill Excise," 1653). Their technical


EXCISEISMS (“ Excise Life as It Is," 1878). Their functions


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