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ONE of the Puritanical tenets was the illegality of all Games of Chance, and he that reads GATAKER upon
may see how much Learning and Reason one of the first Scholars of his age thought necessary, to prove that it was no crime to throw a die, or play at cards, or to hide a shilling for the reckoning.
Certain lands in the Parish of Bampton, in the County of Westmorland, were formerly let together, and the rest was divided as directed by the testator, between the Minister of the Parish and the School. master of the Free School in Grange,but some years ago, the land was measured and divided, and the Minister and Schoolmaster drew Lots for the choice. This was done by the consent of the
Johnson's Works, vol. ix. p. 197. Svo. edit., 1801.
Trustees, and each party has since holden his part in severalty.”
Annexed to a Deed for appointing new Trustees of The Countess of BATH's Charity at Tawstock, dated in 1766, is a Schedule, stating, that to prevent any misapplication of the Charity for the future, which had theretofore happened, by giving it to persons not resident within the Manor of Tawstock,- it was agreed by the then Trustees, that they should draw lots, and as such lot should happen, each Trustee, in turn, should receive and dispose of the Charity for one year.3
In 1674, John How, by his Will, devised the dividends of certain Stock to The Mayor of Guildford, who, with the Magistrates of the Town, are to choose two poor Maid Servants of good report, who have served Masters or Mistresses there two years together, who shall throw two dice, or cast lots, and shall pay one year's clear profit of the stock to such Maid as shall throw the highest number,
· Rep. VII. p. 562. Rep. IX. p. 80.
or to whom the lot shall fall,--and he directed, that the other Maid shall the next year, if she shall inhabit that Town, and not be married, throw dice or cast lots with another Maid, but that if any one Maid shall lose by the dice or lots four times, she shall not be afterwards admitted to throw or cast again."
* Rep. x. p. 641.
In the year 1797, Mr. Thomas Harris, by a Codicil to his Will, gave to the Ministers, Churchwardens and Overseers of the Parish of Nunney, the sum of 10001., and to the Ministers, Churchwardens and Overseers, for the time being, of the Parish of Cloford, the like sum of 10001, respectively, to be placed upon good security, and the interest arising therefrom to be applied in the month of December in each year, among
natives of those parishes, as shall have been married during the preceding year in the respective Parishes, to men of any Parish or Place, in such proportions and manner, as the said Ministers, Churchwardens and Overseers shall judge proper.
The Claimants, of course, vary in number,—where there are more than one, the gift is distributed according to the wants and deserts of thc applicants.
It has sometimes happened, that no Marriage has taken place within the year preceding in the parish, to entitle any person to the bounty, in which case the. Dividends are accumulated until an applicant presents herself, who is entitled under the Will. She then receives the whole amount of the accumulated Dividend. This Charity, in the opinion of The Rev. John IRELAND, Curate of the Parish of Cloford, has a tendency to produce mischievous effects. Besides it's general tendency to produce Immorality, young persons have been thereby induced to marry at a very early age, in order to entitle themselves to the bounty, and in some instances they have been known to anticipate the sum, by mortgaging the same before marriage.
The same bad consequences have also been observed to result from this bequest, in the parish of Nunney. It is stated to have produced much poverty and distress, inducing Marriage, without any