In 1535 Henry VIII, famed for his unique sense of justice, decided to levy taxes on beards (even though he continued to wear one with pride). This was repealed in the 1560s, after Henry had succumbed to syphilis, and so the dilemma of choosing to pay the barber or the government was resolved. Later, beard tax was introduced in Russia by Peter the Great after a visiting noblewoman pointed out the snot dangling from his hairy face.
See here for the verification method of payment of the beard tax.
Soak the Tall: A Lesson in Optimal Taxation