Gaming Act 1738

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1738 c. 28
Anno duodecimo G E O R G I I II. An Act for the more effectual preventing of excessive and deceitful Gaming.

(12 Geo. 2) C A P. XXVIII.

'WHEREAS in and by an Act of Parliament made and passed in the tenth and eleventh Years of the Reign of his late Majesty King William the Third, intituled,An Act for suppressing of Lotteries ; after reciting, that for divers Years before making the said Act several evildisposed Persons had set up many unlawful Games called Lotteries , not only in the City of London and Westminster and in the Suburbs thereof, but in most of the ancient Towns and Places in England and the Dominion of Wales ; and had thereby most unjustly and fraudulently gotten to themselves great Sums of Money from the Children and Servants of several Gentlemen, Traders and Merchants, and from other unwary Persons, to the utter Ruin and Impoverishment of many Families, it is declared and enacted, That all such Lotteries, and all other Lotteries, are common and publick Nuisances: And whereas in order to suppress all such Lotteries, it is in and by the said Statute enacted and declared, That from and after the twenty-ninth Day of December which shall be in the Year of our Lord one thousand six hundred and ninety-nine, no Person or Persons whatsoever shall publickly or privately, exercise, keep open, shew, or expose to be played at, drawn or thrown at, or shall draw, play or throw at any such Lottery, or other Lotteries, either by Dice, Lots, Cards, Balls, or any other Number or Figures, or any other way whatsoever, under such Penalties as in the said Act are mentioned and set forth; which said Statute is inforced by an Act of Parliament made in the ninth Year of the Reign of her late Majesty Queen Anne, intituled, : And whereas in and by one other Act of Parliament made and passed in the eighth Year of the Reign of his late Majesty King George the First, intituled, Englandto return Duplicates of Annuities into the Exchequer ; it is enacted, That all and every Person or Persons, who after the twenty-first Day of December in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and twenty-one, shall erect, set up, continue or keep, or shall cause or procure to be erected, set up, continued or kept, any Office or Place, under the Denomination of Sales of Houses, Lands, Advowsons, Presentations to Livings, Plate, Jewels, Ships, Goods or other Things, for the Improvement of small Sums of Money, or shall sell, or expose to Sale any Houses, Lands, Advowsons, Presentations to Livings, Plate, Jewels, Ships, Goods, or other Things, by way of Lottery, or by Lots, Tickets, Numbers or Figures; or shall make, print, advertise or publish, or cause to be made, printed, advertised or published, Proposals or Schemes for advancing small Sums of Money by several Persons, amounting in the whole to large Sums, to be divided among them by the Chances of the Prizes in some publick Lottery or Lotteries established or allowed by Act of Parliament; or shall deliver out, or cause or procure to be delivered out, Tickets to the Persons advancing such Sums, to entitle them to a Share of the Money so advanced, according to such Proposals or Schemes; or shall make, print or publish, or cause to be made, printed or published, any Proposal or Scheme of the like Kind or Nature under any Denomination, Name or Title whatsoever, and shall be thereof convicted upon the Oath or Oaths of one or more credible Witness or Witnesses, by two or more Justices of the Peace of the County, Division or Liberty where such Offence shall be committed, or the Offender shall be found, which Oath such Justices of the Peace are hereby impowered and required to administer; the Person so convicted shall, for every such Offence, over and above any former Penalties inflicted by any former Act or Acts of Parliament made against any private or unlawful Lotteries, forfeit the Sum of five hundred Pounds, one third Part thereof to his Majesty, his Heirs and Successors, and one other third Part thereof to the Informer, and the remaining third Part thereof to the Poor of the Parish where such Offence shall be committed; the same to be levied by Distress and Sale of the Offender's Goods, by Warrant under the Hands and Seals of such Justices, before whom such Offender shall be convicted as aforesaid; and shall also for every such Offence, by such Justices be committed to the County Gaol, there to remain without Bail or Mainprize for the Space of one whole Year, and from thence till the Sum of five hundred Pounds so forfeited as aforesaid, shall be fully paid and satisfied: Provided nevertheless, That any Person who shall think himself or herself aggrieved by the Judgment or Determination of two or more such Justices in any the Cases aforesaid, shall have Liberty to appeal to the next Quarter-Sessions to be held for the County, City or Place where such Judgment or Determination shall be made or given; and that the Judgment to be given by the Justices of the said next Quarter-Sessions shall be final: And whereas it is found by Experience, that the said good and wholesome Laws have not effectually answered the good Ends, Intents and Purposes, in and by the said Acts designed; but that, contrary to the true Intent and Meaning of the said recited Acts, several deceitful Games and Subscriptions are daily carried on under the Denomination of Sales of Houses, Lands, Plate, Jewels, Goods and other Things; and that several Printers have printed, published, or caused to be printed and published, Proposals or Schemes for the Sale of such Houses, Lands, Plate, Jewels, Goods and other Things, to be determined by Raffles, by Mathematical Machines or Engines, and by other indirect Ways and Means, tending to evade the said good and wholesome Laws before mentioned: And whereas several Persons have for many Years past carried on and set up certain fraudulent Games and Lotteries, to be determined by the Chance of Cards and Dice, under the Denomination of the Games of the Ace of Hearts, Pharaoh, Basset and Hazard, and thereby defrauded several of his Majesty's Subjects, ignorant of the great Disadvantage Adventurers in the said Games and Lotteries so denominated the...

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