An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of by Adam Smith, Edwin Cannan, George J Stigler

By Adam Smith, Edwin Cannan, George J Stigler

"The Wealth of countries" is a huge e-book of economics, heritage, philosophy, and social feedback. it's even more than Adam Smith neckties at GOP conventions, simply because it is way than a reverential nod or in glossy textbooks. Econ scholars have to learn it to work out the place their self-discipline got here from and what it can be back. thankfully, Dickey's abridgment reproduces adequate of the textual content (about 25 percentage) to exhibit the intensity of Smith's erudition and the fantastic range of his pursuits. regrettably, the editorial gear is susceptible. The reviews are few in quantity and exceedingly short, and the fast Preface fails to place the ebook into ancient and highbrow context. Dickey does supply 4 appendices yet those take care of really really expert themes instead of the massive photograph.

Bottom line: this version is low-cost yet may not be the simplest one for college students.

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Sample text

But when corn is at the latter price, not only the nominal, but the real value of a corn rent will be double of what it is when at the former, or will command double the quantity either of labour or of the greater part of other commodities; the money price of labour, and along with it that of most other things, continuing the same during all these Adam Smith ElecBook Classics The Wealth of Nations: Book 1 59 fluctuations. Labour, therefore, it appears evidently, is the only universal, as well as the only accurate measure of value, or the only standard by which we can compare the values of different commodities at all times, and at all places.

Copper, therefore, appears to have continued always the measure of value in that republic. At Rome all accounts appear to have been kept, and the value of all estates to have been computed either in asses or in sestertii. The as was always the denomination of a copper coin. The word sestertius signifies two asses and a half. Though the sestertius, therefore, was originally a silver coin, its value was estimated in copper. At Rome, one who owed a great deal of money was said to have a great deal of other people’s copper.

Before the institution of coined money, however, unless they went through this tedious and difficult operation, people must always have been liable to the grossest frauds and impositions, and instead of a pound weight of pure silver, or pure copper, might receive in exchange for their goods an adulterated composition of the coarsest and cheapest materials, which had, however, in their outward appearance, been made to resemble those metals. To prevent such abuses, to facilitate exchanges, and thereby to encourage all sorts of industry and commerce, it has been found necessary, in all countries that have made any considerable advances towards improvement, to affix a public stamp upon certain quantities of such particular metals as were in those countries commonly made use of to purchase goods.

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