The Right Honble. Iohn Barber Esqr.Lord Mayor of London in ye: year 1733.
Copper engraving, scarce frontispiece to 'The Life & Character of John Barber, Esq; late Lord-Mayor of London, deceased'. Sheet 210 x 150mm, 8¼ x 6". Trimmed to image.
The Prime Minister Robert Walpole was concerned to reduce the burden of the land tax and shift government revenues to other sources. "The excise scheme of 1733 promised revenues which would permit a permanent reduction of the land tax. The measure involved converting the customs duties on tobacco and wine into inland duties. It followed on other fiscal measures that moved in this direction, tea, chocolate, and coffee and then the year before salt. The opposition was intense and effective against the measure. Opponents revived longstanding criticisms of such measures: "Excise duties involved giving extensive powers of search to revenue officers, and a wide jurisdiction to magistrates and excise commissioners. Moreover, merchants and traders--both those engaged in circumventing the existing customs duties and those who paid them--disliked the prospect of dealing with "officious excisemen". When the City of London [John Barber] formally presented its petition against the excise on 10 April, 1733, Walpole's majority fell to seventeen. A Revolt in the Lords looked likely and on the following day Walpole announced the withdrawal of the excise scheme. John Barber (1676 - 1741), Lord Mayor of London, wearing a shoulder-length curly wig, white cravat, chain of office and a coat trimmed with fur. With his April 9th 1733 speech to the Common Council of Alderman inscribed below portrait. Reduced copy in reverse of the portrait engraved by Gerard Vandergucht (see 16630). After Bartholomew Dandridge (1691 - c.1754).
[Ref: 16652] £140.00