After the uniting of Scotland and England in 1707 with one (english) parliament the distillers became illigaly because the tax was raised on the british standart. More gaugers were sent to the land and in 1713 there was also the british barley tax in Scotland. After the defeat of the Jacobites in 1715 there were streets built to controll the highland clans and the illegally distilleries. Everybody got 5 pounds if he reported illict stills. The distillers itself offered very often their illict and old stills to get the 5 pounds from with they bought new and better stills. 1746 after the battle of Culloden all scottish nationalism was banned (no kilts, no gaelic words, no bagpipes and higher taxes on whisky). With the gin act and the following down turn of Gin in England the scots started to export their whisky to the british mainland and the smuggeling bloomed. After a bad harvest in 1757 there was no distillation allowed until 1760.
In 1770 the STEIN`S exported for the first time 2000 gallons of whisky to London. Small stills with a capacity between 90 and 220 liters were forbidden in 1774 and every still had to be bigger than 1000 litres and controlled by the customs. In 1777 there were eight legal distilleries in Edinburgh and nearly 400 illict distilleries. Johnson & Justerini sold usquebaugh to London in 1779. The exports increased to 835.360 litres in 1782 and between 1793 and 1803 the tax increased from nine to 162 pounds to finance the war with France. Scotland was divided into the Lowlands and the Highlands through the Wash Excise Act in 1784. This was the first official differentiation of regions of origin. The highland line run from Greenock to Dundee. The Lowlands produced a very bad spirit with big stills and a low part of malted barley because here were the tax very high. Highlandwhisky was the more authentic whisky which was also produced in smaller stills with 91 litres for a minimum. At this time were in Speyside about 4000 illict distilleries operated. In 1788 export had to be declared 12 months before shipping. In 1797 the highlandline was transferred into the north for about two years and it run from Lochgilphead to Findhorn excluding Angus and Aberdeen.