See also:term which, though used generally in the sense of exclusive possession, is more accurately applied only to grants from the
See also:Crown or from parliament, the private
See also:act of an individual whereby he obtains
See also:control over the supply of any particular article, being properly defined as
See also:engrossing." It was from the practice of the
See also:sovereign granting to a favourite, or as a
See also:reward for
See also:good service, a
See also:monopoly in the sale or manufacture of some particular class of goods that the
See also:system of protecting inventions arose, and this fact lends additional
See also:interest to the
See also:history of monopolies (see
See also:PATENTS) . When the practice of making such grants first arose it does not appear easy to say .
See also:Coke laid it down that by the
See also:law the
See also:king could
See also:grant to an inventor, or to the importer of an invention from abroad, a temporary monopoly in his invention, but that grants in restraint of
See also:trade were illegal . Such, too, was the law laid down in the first recorded case, Darcy v .
See also:Allen (the case of monopolies, 1602), and this decision was never overruled, though the law was frequently evaded . The patent rolls of the Plantagenets show few instances of grants of monopolies (the earliest known is temp . Edw . IT_I.), and we come down to the reign of
See also:Henry VIII. before we find much evidence of this exercise of the
See also:prerogative in the case of either new inventions or known articles of trade .
See also:Elizabeth, as is well known, granted patents of monopoly so freely that the practice became a
See also:grave abuse, and on several occasions gave rise to serious complaints in the
See also:House of
See also:Commons . Lists prepared at the
See also:time show that many of the commonest necessaries of
See also:life were the subjects of monopolies, by which their price was grievously enhanced . That the
See also:queen did not assume the right of making these grants entirely at her pleasure is shown, not only by her own statements in answer to addresses from the house, but by the fact that the preambles to the
See also:instruments conveying the grants always set forth some public benefit to be derived from their
See also:action . Thus a grant of a monopoly to sell playing-
See also:cards is made, because "
See also:divers subjects of able bodies, which might go to plough, did employ themselves in the
See also:art of making of cards "; and one for the sale of
See also:starch is justified on the ground that it would prevent wheat being wasted for the purpose .
Accounts of the angry debates in 1565 and 16or are given inHume and elsewhere . The former debate produced a promise from the queen that she would be careful in exercising her privileges; the latter a proclamation which, received with
See also:great joy by the house, really had but little effect in stopping the abuses complained of . In the first parliament of
See also:James I. a "
See also:committee of grievances " was appointed, of which Sir Edward Coke was chairman . Numerous monopoly patents were brought up before them, and were cancelled . Many more, however, were granted by the king, and. there
See also:grew up a
See also:race of " purveyors," who made use of the privileges granted them under the great seal for various purposes of extortion . One of the most notorious of these was Sir
See also:Giles Mompesson, who fled the
See also:country to avoid trial in 162r . After the introduction of several bills, and several attempts by James to compromise the
See also:matter by orders in council and promises, the
See also:Statute of Monopolies was passed in 1623 . This made all monopolies illegal, except such as might be granted by parliament or were in respect of new manufactures or inventions . Upon this excepting clause is built up the entire
See also:English system of letters patent for inventions . The act was strictly enforced, and by. its aid the evil system of monopolies was eventually abolished . Parliament has, of course, never exercised its power of granting to any individual exclusive privileges of dealing in any articles of trade, such as the privileges of the Elizabethan monopolists; but the licences required to be taken out by dealers in
See also:tobacco, &c., are lineal descendants of the old monopoly grants, while the quasi-monopolies enjoyed by
See also:railways, canals,
See also:gas and
See also:water companies, &c., under acts of parliament, are also representative of the ancient practice . See W .
H . Price, The English Patents of Monopoly (1906) .
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