But the most important reason for the conny-catchers' immunity from legal interference was what we should call in modern American parlance' graft '. They had influence in high places. Gaming-houses and bowling-alleys were licensed, bales of dice were approved and sealed, and playing-cards were sold-all under monopolies granted by royal patents, so that the protection of gaming yielded a good revenue to favourites of the Queen. Hence it is that our study of the relation in which this kind of roguery stood to society in the
reign of Elizabeth leads us not as in the case of vagrants and beggars to a study of laws and reports of trials, but instead to a study of the legal machinery by which this gaming was licensed and protected.