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Factory

countries and merchants

FACTORY. The name of factory was formerly given only to establishments of merchants and factors resident in fbreign countries, who were governed by certain regulations adopted for their mutual sup port and assistance against the undue encroachments or interference of the go vernments of the countries in which they resided. In modern times these factories have, in a great measure, ceased to exist, because of the greater degree of security which merchants feel as regards both the justice of those governments and the pro tection, when needed, of their country. The Venetians, Genoese, Portuguese, Dutch, French, and English, have all had establishments of the nature of factories. In China the Portuguese established a factory at Macao, and the English at Canton. In most instances, factones have at first obtained the privilege of trading, and afterwards procured for the precinct assigned to them some exemption from the jurisdiction of the native courts. In

this state of things the supreme govern ment of the country whose subjects have established the factory prepare laws for its control and administration, and treat it in fact as if it were its dependency, though the sovereignty of the native government is undisputed, and to it be longs the right of legislation for the pre cinct of the factory, though it may not always have the power of resuming it. ( Government of Dependencies. By George Cornewall Lewis, pp. 93 and 169.) In its usual acceptation, the word factory is now employed to denote an establish ment in which a considerable number of workmen or artisans are employed toge ther for the production of some article of manufacture, most commonly with the assistance of machinery.