On the 22nd of December, 1775 the British government passed the Prohibitory Act in an attempt to retaliate against the spreading rebellion in the British colonies in North America. The act initiated a naval blockade of American ports and outlawed trade with the colonies, declaring that "all manner of trade and commerce is and shall be prohibited". The Prohibitory Act ended any attempts at reconciliation between the British and the colonies and served as an effective declaration of war.
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