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.