BLEACHING AND DYEING.—This industry is often carried on by the aid of such processes as would bring the factory within the statutory regulations relating to ALKALI WORKS and chemical process ; reference should accordingly be made to the articles under these titles. In the process of Turkey-red dyeing young persons and women may be employed on Satur days beyond the hours generally prescribed by the Factory Acts ; so also may they be employed in the same work at any time in order to prevent damage arising from spontaneous combustion, or in the case of open-air bleaching, from any extraordinary atmospheric influence. Apart from these exceptions, the works and conditions of employment are regulated by the general provi sions of the FACTORY ACTS (q.v.) with regard to non-textile factories.
BLOCKADE.—This is a term in international law, and signifies the act, in time of war, of investing a town or a seaport in order that nothing may enter therein in the shape of men, arms, munitions, or articles of sustenance. A blockade is applied either to towns which are too effectively defended to be taken by siege, or to seaports whose commerce it is sought to interrupt. The right to blockade the strong places, seaports, and parts of the seashore of a people against whom the blockaders are prosecuting a war, has been at all times enforced, and is recognised by all civilised nations. The declaration of a blockade being an act of sovereign power, it is bound to emanate from the government itself, or from some authority to which the right to make such a declaration has been expressly delegated. The commander of a fleet or the commander-in-chief of an army has not generally power to establish a blockade, nor to extend to a neighbouring place one which is already existing against another place and has been regularly declared ; but in the case of war-like operations at a great distance from the centre of government, such officials would be probably held to impliedly possess the necessary power. Blockade is a means of enforcing submission of the enemy without destroying it, but from a commercial point of view it is the gravest step that international law allows to be taken against neutrals. In effect it weighs more heavily upon neutrals than upon the blockaded belligerent. International law prohibits neutrals from holding communication or engaging in commerce with a block aded place. Accordingly, the inoffensive neutral ship bearing only neutral merchandise is placed, when it violates a blockade, absolutely upon the same footing as an enemy ship, or a ship bearing contraband of war for the benefit of the enemy. Though contraband of war includes only certain classes
of merchandise, the number of which tends always to be restricted, yet the prohibition resulting from a blockade is applied to goods and merchandise of every class and nature.
In order that a blockade may produce the required effect upon the rights of neutrals, it is necessary that it should be real or effective ; that is to say, it must be maintained by a force sufficient to really and effectively prevent access from the sea, or surrounding country, as the case may be, to the enemy. Moreover, to make it acquire a genuine and legitimate character, public notification must be made of the blockade. Notification may be either of three kinds. The first consists in the commander of the blockading force signifying the commencement of the blockade to the authorities of the places i whose communications with the enemy he intends to cut off; the second is the official notification communicated to the neutral governments through the usual diplomatic channels ; the third is the special notice given on the spot by the blocka ling commander, as occasion requires. A blockade automatically ceases so soon as it becomes ineffective ; it also ceases upon the blockading force withdrawing and giving notice thereof, as it always should, to the neutral governments. In case of a violation of blockade, ships guilty thereof, together with the cargo, may be seized, and even corporal punishment and death inflicted upon those implicated in the offence ; but the owners of the cargo are entitled to relief if they can rebut the presumption that the violation was intended for their benefit. A ship that attempts to go into a blockaded port ; or to come out of it with a cargo laden after the commencement of the blockade ; or to start on a voyage with the intention of entering the port ; or to place itself so near thereto as to be in a condition to enter unobserved, would be guilty of violation.
Pacific blockade is the name given to those aggressive acts, evidently and intentionally hostile, which are manifested in a time of peace, by stationing a more or less considerable nadal force before a certain port, and temporarily prohibiting commerce with that port. The practice of pacific blockades has not yet been reduced to uniform rules, and has only received a conventional sanction ; but it may be safely assumed that any private neutral ship attempting to violate the blockade would be seized and confiscated, together with all the private property on board. See CONTRABAND ;