Excise crisis

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Lord Orford Robert Walpole (1676—1745) prime minister

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In 1733 Sir Robert Walpole, George II's first minister, was anxious to conciliate the country gentlemen by reducing the land tax to 1 shilling in the pound. He therefore proposed the substitution of excise duties for customs duties on tobacco and wine, to maximize revenue and discourage smuggling. However, a full‐scale outcry was raised in London and many provincial towns. In the Commons Walpole's majority almost collapsed, and he withdrew the measure.

Subjects: British History.

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