YORKSGEN-L ArchivesArchiver > YORKSGEN > 1998-01 > 0886034863
From: "Keith Feeney" <>
Subject: RE: HEARTH TAX
Date: Wed, 28 Jan 1998 16:47:43 -0800
When the monarchy was returned to power in 1660 King Charles 2nd was a bit
strapped for cash. His ministers came up with the bright idea of taxing
house owners on the number of fireplaces (hearths) they had in their homes.
There were very many exemptions to paying the tax, value of house,
charitable status, annual income etc... to avoid paying the tax an exemption
certificate was required...or some means of disguising a fireplace when the
tax inspector came calling!
The 'Hearth Tax' returns for a period can give a clue as to the status of an
individual. Possibly his place in the community and the number of hearths he
was liable for.
As a general rule of thumb over six hearths usually indicates gentry and the
aristocracy, over four, merchants, tradesmen and wealthy craftsmen, over two
would be a general tradesman, small shopkeeper etc. One , or less (snuggle
up to the cattle) indicates the poor.
The Hearth Tax was not a very popular act and there was widespead evasion.
It was abolished in 1688.
Pay a visit to the history of Leeds website
or ask a question, leave a message, contact a friend
at the Leodis message forum....
From: Graham Chapman [mailto:]
Sent: 13 March 2001 06:36
Subject: HEARTH TAX
Hello List I am quit new to Genealogy and I have seen the HEARTH TAX a few
times mentioned but could SKS tell me what it is and what it was for .
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|RE: HEARTH TAX by "Keith Feeney" <>|