AN APOLOGY FOR THE BUILDER: OR A DISCOURSE SHEWING THE Cause and Effects OF THE INCREASE OF Building.
LONDON, Printed for Cave Pullen at the Angel in St. Pauls-Church-yard, 1685.
AN APOLOGY FOR THE BUILDER.
TO write of Architecture and its seve∣ral parts, of Situation, Platforms of Building, and the quality of Materi∣als, with their Dimensions and Orna∣ments: To discourse of the several Orders of Co∣lumns, of the Tuscan, Dorick, Ionick, Corinthian, and composit, with the proper inrichments of their Ca∣pitals, Freete and Cornish, were to transcribe a Folio from Vitruvius and others; and but mispend the Readers and Writers time, since we live in an Age and Country, where all the Arts belonging to Ar∣chitecture are so well known and practised: And yet at the same time and place to write an Apolo∣gy for the Artist may seem a greater trifling. In a time when since the Grecian Greatness their Arts were Page 2 never better performed. In a place where Buil¦dings are generally so well finish'd, that almost every House is a little Book of Architecture; and as the ancient Artists made Athens and the rest of their Cities famous by their Buildings, and still pre∣serve the memory of the places by the ruins of their excellent Arts: so the Artists of this Age have already made the City of London the Metropolis of Europe, and if it be compared for the number of good Houses, for its many and large Piazzas, for its richness of Inhabitants, it must be allowed the largest, best built, and richest City in the world. But such is the misfortune of Greatness to be en∣vied. The Citizens,nay the whole Nation is asto∣nished at the flourishing condition of this Metro∣polis, to see every year a new Town added to the old one; and like men affrighted are troubled with misapprehensions, and easily imposed on by the false suggestions of those that envy her Grandeur, and are angry with the Builders for making her so great.
The Citizens are afraid that the Building of new Houses will lessen the Rent and Trade of the old ones, and fancy the Inhabitants will re∣move on a sudden like Rats that they say run away from old Houses before they tumble.
The Country Gentleman is troubled at the new Buildings for fear they should draw away their Inhabitants, and depopulate the Country, and Page 3 they want Tenants for their Land. And both agree that the increase of Building is prejudicial to the Government, and use for Argument a simile from those that have the Rickets, fansying the City to be the Head of the Nation, and that it will grow too big for the Body.
This is the Charge that is laid on the Builders: Therefore the design of this Discourse is to answer these aspersions, to remove these fears and false conceptions, by confuting these Popular Errors, and shewing that the Builder ought to be encou∣raged in all Nations as the chief promoter of their Welfare.
This is done by shewing the Cause of the in∣crease of Building, and the Effects; as they relate to the City, to the Country, and to the Government.
Of the Cause.
THE Cause of the Increase of Building is from the natural increase of Mankind, that there is more born than die. From the first blessing of the Creation, Increase and multiply, joined to the good Government of a Gracious King.
There are three things that man by nature is un∣der a necessity to take care of, to provide food for himself, Clothes and a House. For the first, all the rest Page 4 of Creation as well as man is under that necessity to take care of: For life cannot be maintained with∣out food.
The second belongs only to man, and it is a que∣stion by some, whether it is required of him by na∣ture, or custom, because in some Countries (and those cold) men go naked.
But as to the last, it is most certain, that Man is forced to build by nature, as all those Creatures are, whose young are born so weak (like the off∣spring of Mankind), that they require some time for strength after their birth, to follow their Parents, or feed themselves. Thus the Rabbit, the Fox and Lion make themselves Burrows, Kennels, and Dens to bring forth, and shelter their young, but the Mare, Cow, Sheep, &c. bring forth in the open field, because their young are able to follow them as soon as folded.
So that the natural cause of Building a House is to provide a shelter for their young; and if we examine man in his Natural condition without Arts, his Tenement differs little from the rest of Nature's Herd: The Fox's Kennel though not so large; being a lesser creature, may yet for its con∣trivance in its several apartments be compared with any of his Cottages: Earthen walls, and covering are the manner of both their Buildings, and the Furniture of both their Houses alike: Now as the Page 5 Rabbits increase, new Burrows are made, and the Boundaries of the Warren are enlarged. So it is with Man, as he increaseth, new Houses are built, and his Town made bigger.
When Mankind is civilized, instructed with Arts, and under good Government, every man doth not dress his own meat, make his own Clothes, nor build his own House. He enjoys pro∣perty of Land and Goods, which he or his Ance∣stors by their Arts and industry gained. These Pos∣sessions make the difference among men of rich and poor. The rich are fed, clothed, and housed by the labour of other men, but the poor by their own, and the Goods made by this labour are the rents of the rich mens Land (for to be well fed, well clothed, and well lodged, without labour either of body or mind, is the true definition of a rich man.)
Now as men differ in Estates, so they differ in their manner of living. The rich have variety of Di∣shes, several suits of Clothes, and larger Houses; and as their riches increase, so doth their wants, as Sir William Temple hath observed, men are better distin∣guished by what they want, than by what they injoy. And the chief business of Trade is the ma∣king and selling all sorts of Commodities to sup∣ply their occasions. For there are more hands im∣ployed to provide things necessary to make up the several distinctions of men. Things that promote Page 6 the ease, pleasure and pomp of life, than to supply the first natural necessities from hunger, cold, and a house only to shelter their young. Now the Trader takes care from time to time, to provide a sufficient quantity of all sorts of Goods for mans occasions, which he finds out by the Market: That is, By the quick selling of the Commodities, that are made ready to be sold. And as there are Butchers, Brew∣ers and Cooks, Drapers, Mercers and Taylors, and a hundred more, that furnish him with food and clothes; so there are Bricklayers, Carpenters, Play∣sterers, and many more Traders, that build houses for him, and they make houses of the first, second, and third rate of building in proportion to the in∣crease of the several degrees of men, which they find out by the Market, that is by letting of Houses alrea∣dy built: so that if it were throughly believed, that Mankind doth naturally increase; this miracle of the great increase of Houses would cease, it is there∣fore necessary to shew that man doth naturally in∣crease.
This may be sufficiently proved by Sacred History, That the World was first peopled by the increase from Adam and Eve, and after the de∣luge repeopled by Noah and his Sons Shem, Ham, and Japhet. That the Jews began from the single stock of Abraham by Isaac, and so from Jacob; and when Moses numbred them, which was not long distance Page 7 of time (being computed to be about Two hun∣dred and sixty years from Jacob) they were above Six hundred thousand fighting men, reckoning only from Twenty years old and upward, be∣sides Women and Children. And when num∣bred by David, which was about four hundred and fifty years after, they were grown a very great Nation, being Thirteen hundred thou∣sand fighting men of Judah and Israel.
But the late Lord Chief Justice Hales in his Discourse on this subject was not contented to relye wholly on Arguments from Authority of of Holy Writ, and therefore takes other To∣picks to confirm the relation of Moses concern∣ing the beginning of the world, and the peo∣pleing of it by a natural increase.
I. From the novity of History, That no Au∣thentick History is older than four thousand years, and none so old as Moses of the Beginning of the World.
II. From the Chronological Account of Times. That the Assyrian, Egyptian, and Grecian Accounts are to be found out in what year of the World they began.
Page 8 III. From the beginning of the ancient King∣doms, That Rome was built by Romulus in the Seventh Olympiad, the Assyrian Monarchy be∣gan by Cyrus in 55 Olympiad, and the Grecian by Alexander in 111.
IV. From the first invention of Arts, That the times of the first invention of Husbandry and making of Wine are as well known, as the later Inventions of Gun-powder and Printing.
V. From the beginning of Religions, That the time of the Inauguration of the Heathen Deities are known; As when that Jupiter, Bacchus, Ceres and Aesculapius, and the rest of them were but men of great renown, and for their Good Deeds after their death worshipped; As well as when Moses, our Saviour, and Mahomet were born.
VI. From the Decays of Humaue Nature; but how far that may be true, I leave to further inquiry.
VII. From the beginning of the Patres fa∣milias, or the first Planters of the Continents and Islands of the World; that Helen gave de∣nomination to the Grecians called Hellenista, Pela∣sigus,Page 9 to the Pelasgi, Latinus to the Latins, and the place called Latium, Italus to the Italians, and Italy is as much to be believed, as that the English gave name to New England in America, and the Names of the Towns there, London and New York.
VIII. From the gradual increase of Mankind; That considering the time of his first Procreati∣on, which is agreed to be about 15 or 16 years, to the time he gives over, which is about sixty: It cannot be otherwise believed but that in the space of five and forty years he must produce a numerous off-spring: And it is no wonder amongst us; For a person to live to see some hundreds descended from his loyns.
Afterwards he comes to a particular Obser∣vation of the Increase of England by comparing the present State of it with the Survey set down in the Doomsday-Book, and makes an Instance in Gloucester-Shire, by which it appeareth, that the Inhabitants of that County since that time are greatly increased. And last of all he argu∣eth the Increase of London from the Bills of Mortality.
These are the Arguments of the late Lord Chief Justice Hales, to prove that Mankind naturally increaseth, of which he discourseth at Page 10 large in his Book of the Origination of Man∣kind, and therein answereth all the Objections to the contrary. And because these two last Ar∣guments from the Survey of the Doomsday-Book, and Bills of Mortality carry with them the greatest force, for they best discover the matter of Fact as to our own Nation. I have therefore made it my business to make a scruti∣ny into the truth of them: As to the first, it is easie to make it appear that there is thirty times more people in England than they were in Willi∣am the Conqueror's time, when the Survey was taken. And as to the latter, I shall have occasi∣on to discourse of at large hereafter.
And if it were necessary to use any further Ar∣guments for the proof of this Matter, they would plainly appear by comparing ancient Histories with Modern in the Descriptions they give of the Countries. As to the great Woods, the many little Governments, and the manner of the Peoples living without Arts: But not to wander over many Countries, and among several Hi∣storians I will only take the short description that Caesar giveth of our own, to shew how it differs from what it now is.
For were there are great Woods, there is not room for Pasture or Corn, to feed Mankind: Page 12 Besides they are a shelter for beasts of prey, which man as he increaseth doth every where destroy, and suffers no Flesh-eaters to live but himself, except the Dog and Cat, which he maketh tame for his use. The Lion, Wolf, and the Bear are not to be found in a po∣pulous Country; and it is the first business of all the Planters in America to destroy the wild Beasts, and the Woods, to make room for them∣selves to plant in.
And the reason probably of those Roman Causways, that we find in England, was to make Roads through great Woods to the several Ro∣man Colonies; though at this time we find them in open Champaign Countries; for had the Country been so then, they would certainly have made them straiter than we now find them.
The many little Governments shew the infancy of a Country, for from single Family-govern∣ment first began; those Governments were but so many families of great Men: Now the large Boun∣daries that so many little Governments take up in a Country, make one half of the Country useless: For men are afraid to plant or sow too near their enemies Country for fear they should lose their Harvest. Therefore the same Land can∣not feed so many people as when it is under but one Government.
Page 13 Besides without Arts, a great number of People cannot live together; the earth by the arts of Hus∣bandry produceth ten times more food than it can naturally. And neither can there be any great Cities, for the Inhabitants have nothing to ex∣change for their food, for it is the Arts of the City which are paid for the provisions of the Coun∣try.
To conclude, nothing is so plain from ancient History as that Asia was first peopled, and (accor∣ding to the Description of Moses) began about Babylon: And as Mankind increased, and the Coun∣try filled with Inhabitants; Arts were in∣vented, and they possest more ground, till they spread themselves into Egypt, and so over Africa, and from thence into Greece, over Europe, and now Europe being full, their swarm begins to fill America.
And all the ancient Descriptions of the Countries of Europe, in the times of the Ro∣man Greatness, are just such as are now given of America, and differs vastly from what they are now, in the number of Cities, Towns, and Arts of Inhabitants.
For were America so well peopled as Europe is, those great Countries that are possest there by the Spaniards, French, Dutch and Page 14English, some of them bigger than their own Countries in Europe, could not be so quietly held, and injoyed by not a hundredth part of the peo∣ple of their own Country.
And although the valor of the Roman Soldiers, and their affected Bravery (grown as it were a fashion, and a popular Emulation) conduced much to the greatness of the Roman Empire; yet nothing promoted its success so much, and gave it such large extent as the Infancy of Europe at that time, being thinly inhabited with people, with∣out Arts, and full of little Monarchies aud States. For had it not been so, Caesar could never have over-run Gallia, Belgia, Britany, and some part of Germany, and kept them in subjection with only ten Legions of Soldiers, which was but fifty thousand men; for we have seen within these late years much greater Armies in Belgia a∣lone, (that is within the Seventeen Provinces, and amongst them men not inferior either in courage or skill in War, and yet have not wholly subdu∣ed one Province. And perhaps had these Forces at the same time been sent into America, they might have extended their conquest over as much ground and over as many people as Caesar did.
Page 15 Nor was England so populous then as now it is; For had it been, Caesar would never at first have ventured to invade it with two Legions; and at the second time when he designed a full conquest brought over with him but five Le∣gions, that is but five and twenty thousand men.
For although some may think from the great Armies we read of; neer two Millions of men under Cyrus and Xerxes in Asia; and of vast swarms of the Goths and Vandals in Europe, in their Invasions under King Attila and others, that the world was more populous than now, because we hear of no such numbers of late; yet if it be considered, it demonstrates only the manner of their fighting, and the infancy of the world; The want of people, and Arts, rather than that it was populous.
For the Gentiles Armies were made up after the manner of the Jews, by taking all that were able to bear Armes, reckoning from about 20 years old to sixty. For when Caesar had slain the Army of the Nervii, being about 50000 men, (a valiant people, one of the Seventeen Provinces); the old men and Women Petitioning for mer∣cy, declared that there was not 500 men left in the whole Nation, that were able to bear Arms.
Page 16 And if the King of England should reckon his Army after this manner; Of his eight Million of Subjects (as they are computed to be) there could not be less than three Millions that were able to bear Armes, which would be a greater Army than ever we read of; which must shew that the world was thin of People; since the Assy∣rian Empire the oldest, and therefore most po∣pulous did never raise so great a number.
And those great numbers shew that they wanted Arts; for we read that the Athenians a small but learned people baffled and destroyed all the great Army of Xerxes, reckoned by some to be Seventeen hundred thousand men; And Alexander with a small number of skilful and valiant Greeks subdued the then inhabited World.
And although the Goths and Vandals, and the Cold parts of the World made their Invasion for want of room to live in, yet that proceeded from the want of Arts.
For by Arts the Earth is made more fruitful, and by the invention of the Compass and Printing, the World is made more habitable and con∣versable: By the first the Countries Traffick and Exchange the Commodities they abound with, for those they want. The Timber, Pitch Page 17 and Tarr of the cold Countries are Exchanged for the Wine, Brandy, and Spices of the hot. By the latter all Arts are easier discovered; By Traffick and Arts the Inhabitants of the cold Countries are better fed, better clothed, and better lodged; which make them indure the Extremities of their Climates better than formerly; and as they increase they build new Towns, inlarge their Cities, and im∣prove their own Country; instead of invading and destroying their Neighbours.
But to return home: It is plain that the na∣tural increase of Mankind is the cause of the increase of the City, and that there are no more Houses built every year in it, than are necessary for the growth of the Inhabitants: As will some∣what appear by the number of Apprentices made free, and Marriages every year in the City.
By the best computation that I can learn, there are no less than ten thousand Married every year in the City; which is no great num∣ber considering the number of Inhabitants: And if we should allow two Weddings in a Parish every week one with another, (there being a hundred and thirty Parishes in all) it will much exceed this proportion. Now in some Parishes there is seldom less than ten in a week. And in Dukes-place, and St. Katharine's, being privi∣ledg'd Page 18 places, there is ordinarily twenty or thirty in a week.
As to the number of Apprentices that come every year out of their time, there are not less than Nine thousand; which will not be thought too great a number, if we reckon the Houses in the City, to be about Fourscore thousand: And if the fourth part of this number be al∣lowed for the Gentry, or those which live without Trades or Professions; and the three other parts being Sixty thousand, for Trades or Professions; and one Aprentice to every House (though in some Houses are three or four Ap∣prentices); and that in seven years the whole number come out of their time; then in every year a seventh part of Sixty thousand, (which is about Nine thousand a year) will come out of their time. Now if Mr. Grant's Com∣putation be right, that these Houses contain Eight persons, one with another, then there ought to be a thousand Houses at least built every year for these Nine thousand Apprentices that come out of their time, and the Ten thousand Weddings to have room to breed in. And this proportion is only sufficient to lodg them, and not for places to Trade in, for nine Traders can∣not live in one House. Therefore some of their Page 19 Masters, or other Traders must either die, break, or being grown too rich give over their Trades to make room for some of them to have places to Trade in, besides those that are furnish'd with places by the new Houses.
But I find Mr. Grant much mistaken in his ac∣count about the number of Inhabitants in each House in the out-parts; Perhaps it was from the rebuilding of the City with Houses more ca∣pacious and more in number. For in this last five and twenty years: the Inhabitants are now a third part more, as appeareth by the Bills of Mortality; For in the year 1660 and 1661 there died between Thirteen and fourteen thousand a year, and now there dies betwixt Twenty one and twenty two thousand a year. So that there ought to have been built above Twenty six thousand Houses in these twenty five years, which is above a thousand Houses a year to lodg this increase, which are much more than have been built in the out parts, for it appears by Mr. Morgan's Map of the City that there have not been built in this time 8000 Houses, that is not 300 Houses one year with another.
But this is certain, that there are no more Houses built every year than are occasion for; because there are Tenants for the Houses, when built, and a continuancee every year to Page 20 build more. For the Builders will do as other Traders, who, when the Market is over∣stocked with their Commodities, and no occa∣sion for those already made, forbear to make any more, or bring them to Market, till a new occasion requireth them. And when they find they cannot lett those already built, they will desist from building, and need no Act of Parliament to hinder them. So that we may as well complain that there is too much Cloth and Stuff made, too much Corn sowed, too many Sheep or Oxen bred, as that there are too many Houses built; too many Taylors, Shoo-makers, Bakers and Brewers, as there are too many Builders.
Of the Effects of the increase of Buil∣dings, and first as it relateth to the City.
NEW Buildings are advantageous to a City, for they raise the Rents of the old Houses. For the bigger a Town is, the more of value are the Houses in it. Houses of the same conveniency and goodness are of more value in Bristol, Exeter and Northampton, than in the little Villages adjoyning.
Page 21 Houses in the middle of a Town are of more value than those at the out ends; and when a Town happens to be increased by addition of New Buildings to the end of a Town, the old Houses which were then at the end, become nearer to the middle of the Town, and so in∣crease in value.
Houses are of more value in Cheapside, and Cornhill, than they are in Shoreditch, White-Chap∣pel, Old-Street, or any of the Out-parts; and the Rents in some of these Out-parts have been within this few years considerably advan∣ced by the addition of New Buildings that are beyond them. As for instance, the Rents of the Houses in Bishopsgate-Street, the Minories, &c. are raised from fifteen or sixteen pounds Per Annum, to be now worth thirty, which was by the increase of Buildings in Spittle-Fields, Shadwells and Ratcliff-Highway. And at the other end of the Town those Houses in the Strand and Charing-Cross are worth now fifty and threescore pounds Per Annum, which with∣in this thirty years were not Lett for above twenty pounds Per Annum, which is by the great addition of Buildings since made in St. James's, Leicester-Fields, and other adjoyning parts. But in those Our-parts where no New Page 22 Buildings have been added, as in Old-Street, Grub-Street, and all that side of the City which does not increase, Houses continue much of the same value, as they were twenty years ago: And the reason of this is; because Houses are of value, as they stand in a place of Trade, and by the addition of new Buil∣dings the place becomes to be a greater Thorough-fare, by the passing and repassing of the Inhabitants to these new Buildings.
2. They are advantageous to the City, be∣cause they increase the Trade of it: The Trade of the City is either Wholesale, or Retail. Now the New Buildings of Bloomsberry, Leicester-Fields, St. James's, Spittle-Fields, &c. are like so many new Towns for the Wholesale-Trader to Traffick in. The Inhabitants of these places do eat, wear Clothes, and furnish their Houses, and whatsoever Commoditie they use, come first from the Merchants, or Wholesale-Trader. For the City is the great Mart for Goods, from whence all other places must be furnished; so that the New Buildings are beneficial to the Wholesale Trade of the City. And it appears that they are likewise advantageous to the Retail-Traders, because they can afford to give more Rent for their old Houses, than they did for∣merly; Page 23 for otherwise none would believe that the Tenants of Bishopsgate-street, and the Minories could subsist and pay double the Rent for their Houses within this thirty years, had they not a better Trade in those places than formerly.
Of the Effects of New Buildings as they relate to the Country.
NEW Buildings are advantageous to the Country: I. By taking off the Com∣modities of the Country,
The Materials of these Houses, as Stones, Bricks, Lime, Iron, Lead, Timber, &c. are all the Commodities of the Country. And whatsoever the Inhabitants of these New Houses have occasion for, either for food, Apparel, or Furniture for their Houses, are at first the growth of the Country; And the bigger the Town grows, the greater is the occasion and consumption of these Commodities, and so the greater profit to the Country.
II. New Buildings provide an habitation and livelihood for the Supernumerary and us•¦less Page 24 Inhabitants of the Country. The younger Sons of the Gentry, the Children of the Yeomen and Peasants are by these means provided with Call∣ings, Imployments, and Habitations to exercise them in; which should they have continued in the Country, would have been burdensome, and chargeable to their Friends for want of Imploy∣ments.
For there is always Inhabitants enough left in the Country for the imployments of the Country. For if the Country wanted people, there would be a want of their Commodities, for want of hands to provide them.
Now there is as much Land Plowed, and all sorts of Grain sown, and reaped every year, as there is occasion for; and sometimes more: For the Crown in some years hath been at charge to Export it. And there is as much Wooll provided and made into Clothes and Stuffs, as the Market can take off, and so for all other Commodities of the Country.
Nay there are more of all the Country Com∣modities every year made than formerly: There are more Stuffs, more Clothes sent up to Gerard's and Blackwell-Hall, as appears by the Entries of those Halls; and more Sheep and Oxen sent to London, and eaten, than former∣ly. Page 25 For there are more people in the City to be fed; so that there must be more hands in the Country to provide this greater quantity of Commodities: And the Country does increase as well as the City, as hath been already obser∣ved from the Doomsday-Book.
Therefore if the Rents of the Lands fall in the Country, it must not be ascrib'd to the New-Buildings draining their Inhabitants, but to some other occasions; Which probably may be from the great improvements that are made up∣on the Land in the Country, either by drain∣ing of Fens; improving of Land by Zanfoin; or other profitable Seeds; inclosing of grounds, or disparking and plowing of Parks, by which means the Markets are over stock'd and furnish∣ed at a cheaper rate than those Lands can af∣fford, who have had no advantage from im∣provements: Or else the Market is removed at a greater distance, and the Lands are forced to abate in their price for the carriage; The Town perhaps is decayed, that they used to fur∣nish, and the Trade removed to some other flourishing place at a greater distance; occasi∣oned some times by the death or removal of some great Clothier or Trader; or some other natural obstruction of the place; as the choak∣ing Page 26 up of some Haven, and the forsaking of the Sea, which is the reason of the decay of the Cinque-Ports. These or some other oc∣casions may make some particular mens Farms fall in value; but there is never a County in England, where the Land of the whole County doth not produce a third part more in value than it did within a 100 years, and whosoever will compare these present Rents, with what they were then, will find them generally increased. Therefore the New Buildings of this City can∣not prejudice the Country, but are greatly ad∣vantageous to it.
Of the Effects of the New Buildings, as they relate to the Government.
1. NEW Buildings are advantageous to the King and Government. They are instrumental to the preserving and increasing of the number of the Subjects; And numbers of Subjects is the strength of a Prince: for Houses are Hives for the People to breed and swarm in, without which they cannot increase; And unless they are provided for them from time to time in Page 27 proportion to their increase, they would be for∣ced to go into the Plantations and other Coun∣tries for habitations; and so many times become the Subjects of other Princes; but at the best the Country loseth the profit of feeding them; for they that live in a City are unskilful and unfit for Country-life; and this is the reason why so ma∣ny Scotch Citizens are wandring Pedlers: and that every Town in Europe hath a Scotchman for an Inhabitant.
And that this will be the Effects will appear plainly by examining the growth of the City of London, since the Buildings have flourished, with its condition, when the Buildings were prohi∣bited; And we cannot make a better discovery of it than by the Bills of Mortality, for it is rea∣sonable among such a number of Mankind, such a number should die; and whether it be in such a proportion as one in three and thirty, as Mr. Grant and Sir William Petit have observed, is not not so material to this purpose; but it is a certain demonstration, That if the Burials have increa∣sed, the number of Citizens hath increased, though the proportion may be uncertain.
Now to begin the Observation from the first Bills, that were Printed, which was in the year 1606, for the space of six and seven and twenty Page 28 years, we shall find very little increase in the Ci∣ty, for in 1606 and 1607, there died between six and seven thousand a year; and in the years 1632 and 1633 there died betwixt eight and nine thousand; Now the reason of this was the People of England were a little before that time under the same mistake, as they are gene∣rally now, and cried out against the Builders, that the City would grow too big; and there∣fore in the 38 of Queen Elizabeth they made a Law to prohibit Buildings in the City of Lon∣don; which though it was but a probationary Act, to continue only to the next Sessions of Parlia∣ment (which was but a short time) yet its effects were long; For it frighted the Builders, and ob∣structed the growth of the City; and none built for thirty years after, all King James his Reign, without his Majesties License; But for want of Houses the increase of the People went into other parts of the world; For within this space of time were those great Plantations of New Eng∣land, Virginia, Mariland, and Burmudas began; and that this want of Houses was the occasion is plain; For they could not build in the Country, because of the Law against Cottages. For peo∣ple may get children and so increase, that had not four Acres of ground to Build on.
Page 29 But the People of England at last were con∣vinced of this popular error, and petitioned in Parliament his Majesties K. Charles the Martyr, that he would take his restraint from the Build∣ers; and if the next period of seven and twenty years be examined, wherein there was a greater liberty of Building, though in this space there was a great Rebellion and Civil Wars, which is a great allay to the growth of the People, yet there appeareth a much greater increase of the City of London; For in the years 1656 and 1657, the Burials were twelve and thirteen thousand,
But the flourishing condition of the City of Londen raised a new clamour against the Build∣ers, and Oliver the Usurper glad of any pretence to raise a Tax, made use of this clamor, and laid it upon the new Foundations; but though it was an heavy and unjust Tax upon the Builders, yet he got little by it, for the whole Summ collected was but Twenty thousand Pounds clear of all charges, as appears by the Records of the Exchequer; however it had the same ill effects to stop the Builders, and growth of the City; for the People for want of Houses in that time began that great and flourishing Plantation of Jamaica.
Page 30 Now if the last Period since his Majesties happy Restauration be examined, wherein the Builders have had the greatest liberty, it will appear that the Inhabitants of the City have in∣creased more than in both of the former Pe∣riods; for the yearly Bills of Mortality are now be∣twixt two and three and twenty thousands, so that the City is since increased one third, and as much as in sixty years before.
This is sufficient to shew that a Nation cannot increase without the Metropolis be inlarged, and how dangerous a consequence it may be to ob∣struct its growth, and discourage the Build∣ers. It is to banish the People, and confine the Nation to an Infant Estate, while the Neighbouring Nations grow to the full strength of Manhood, and thereby to render it an easie conquest to its enemies.
For the Metropolis is the heart of a Nati∣on, through which the Trade and Commodi∣ties of it circulate, like the blood through the heart, which by its motion giveth life and growth to the rest of the Body; and if that de∣clines, or be obstructed in its growth, the whole body falls into consumption: And it is the on∣ly symptome to know the health, and thri∣ving of a Country by the inlarging of its Me∣tropolis; Page 31 for the chief City of every Nation in the world that flourisheth doth increase.
And if those Gentlemen that fancy the City to be the Head of the Nation, would but fancy it like the heart, they would never be afraid of its growing too big; For I never read of such a di∣sease, that the Heart was too big for the Body. And if we are of Machiavel's opinion, this simile is the best, for he saith, that Citizens make no good Counsellors, for having raised their For∣tunes by Parsimony and Industry, they are usu∣ally too severe in punishing of Vice, and too niggardly in rewarding of Vertue.
2. It is the interest of the Government, to incourage the Builders; not only because they preserve and increase the Subjects, but they pro∣vide an imploy for them, by which they are fed, and get their livelihood.
There are three great ways that the People in all Governments are imployed in: In provi∣viding Food, Clothes, and Houses. Now those ways are most serviceable to the Government, that imploy most of the People; Those that are imployed in feeding of them, are the fewest in number: for ten men may provide food enough for a thousand: but to cloth, and build Houses for them, requireth many hands: And there is Page 32 that peculiar advantage that ought to be ascribed to the Builder, that he provideth the place of birth for all the other Arts, as well as for man. The Cloth cannot be made without hou∣ses to work it in. Now besides the vast num∣bers of People that are imployed in digging and making the Materials, the Bricks, Stone, Iron, Lead, &c. all those Trades that belong to the furnishing of an house, have their sole depen∣dencies on the Builders, as the Upholsterers, Chair-makers, &c.
But that which is the greatest advantage, they do not only provide a Livelihood to those that belong to the building, and furnishing of Houses, but for the Tenants of those New Houses: For the People being collected and li∣ving together in one Street, they serve and trade one with another: For Trade is nothing else but an exchange of one mans labour for another: as for instance, supposing an hundred men which lived at great distance before; some in Cornwall, others in Yorkshire, and so dispersed over all the Countries in England, live together in one Street; one is a Baker, the other a Brewer, a Shoo-ma∣ker, Taylor, &c. and so in one Trade or other the whole hundred are imployed; The Baker gets his living by making Bread for the other ninety, Page 33 and so do all the rest of them; which while they were dispersed at distances, were useless, and could not serve one another, and were rea∣dy to starve for want of a Livelihood.
3. But they get not only a Livelihood, but grow rich: There ariseth an emulation among them to out-live and out-vye one another in Arts. This forceth them to be industrious, and by industry they grow rich.
4. The increasing of Buildings, and inlarging of Towns, preserveth the peace of a Nation; by rendring the People more easily governed. First it is the Builders interest of all sorts of men to preserve peace: Every man that buildeth an House, gives Security to the Government for his good behaviour. For War is the Builders ruin. The Countryman may expect to enjoy his Land again, though for a time it be laid wast; the Merchant may hide his Goods, or remove them; but when the Town is besieged, the Houses are fired, the place made desolate, and nothing is left to the Builder but ruins, the sad remembrance of his condition.
Besides, all Cities are more inclined to Peace, than the Country; the Citizens Estates are in Trade, and in Goods; many of which grow useless in War, and lye in other Peoples Page 34 hands, and their Debters run away, and take Sanctuary under the Sword; And Citizens being usually rich, cannot endure the hardship of War. Next, great Cities are more easily Go∣verned, because they are under the eye of the Prince, as generally the Metropolis is; or else under some Governour, who by his rewards from the Crown, is engaged to be very watch∣ful in preserving the Peace; so that if they should grow factious, they are more easily correct∣ed. Thus the Ottoman Power governs his Con∣quest by destroying Villages and lesser Towns, and driving the People into Capital Cities, which by the presence of some Basha are go∣verned. Thus the King of France in his late Conquests in Flanders and Alsatia, burnt some hundreds of Villages; but Luxembourg, Stras∣bourg, and other great Towns are preserved. And the bigger the City, the more advan∣tageous to the Government; for from thence they are on a sudden the better supplied with Men and Ammunition, to suppress any Re∣bellion, or oppose a Foreign Enemy.
Page 35 Lastly, New Buildings increase his Maje∣sties Revenues, not only by the Chimney-Money, which makes it a growing Revenue; but by the Customs paid for the Materials to build and furnish the Houses. Besides they be∣ing the cause of the increase of the City, all the increase of the Revenues from the Excise and Customs (since the Cities increase) must be ascribed to them: which are a fourth part more than they were five and twenty years ago. And the Excise is not only increased in the City, but it is so in the Country; which must not be ascribed solely to the good Ma∣nagement, but chiefly to the natural increase of the People. For if there be a third part more People in the City than there were five and twenty years ago, there must be a proportion∣able increase in the Country to provide Food and Clothes for them.
To conclude, It was upon these conside∣rations, That by the building and inlarging of a City, the people are made great, rich, and easily governed: That those ancient and famous Governments, Thebes, Athens, Sparta, Carthage and Rome, began their Dominions, and inlar∣ged them with their Cities; and of late the States of Holland have followed these Exam∣ples.
Page 36 The Citizens of Amsterdam have thrice flung down their Walls to inlarge it; so that from a little Fisher-Town within less than 200 years it is become the third or fourth City of Europe: and the rest of their Cities have fol∣lowed their Pattern; and made Grafts and Streets at the charge of the Government; en∣deavouring to outvie one another by giving Priviledges to incourage the Builders and In∣habitants. And these States have found the effects of it; for by this means they have changed their Style from the Poor Distressed States, (as they wrote to Queen Elizabeth) to the High and Mighty States of the United Provinces.
And if the City of London hath made such a Progress within this five and twenty years, as to have grown one third bigger, and be∣come already the Metropolis of Europe, not∣withstanding the Popular Error the Nation have been infected with, and the ill censures and discouragements the Builders have met with; had they been for this last hundred years encouraged by the Government, the City of London might probably have easily grown three times bigger than now it is.
Page 37 And if we consider what the natural effects of so great a City must have been; To be furnished with such large Provisions for War suitable to its greatness; Such a vast number of Ships; being situate on an Island and Naviga∣ble River; filled with innumerable Inhabi∣tants, of such natural courage as the English are; and to be so easily transported on a sudden with all things necessary for War, it would long before this time have been a Terror to all Europe; and now would have had the oppor∣tunity, under the Government of such a Martial Prince as now reigns, to be made the Metropolis of the World; to have caused England's Monarch to be acknowledged Lord of all the Navigable Cities and Sea-port-Towns in the World; to have made an Universal Mo∣narchy over the Seas, an Empire no less glorious, and of much more profit, than of the Land; and of larger extent, than either Caesar's or Alexander's.