"I REGARD THE SCIENCE OF MONEY AS ONE OF THE MOST, PERHAPS THE MOST, INTRICATE, AND TO PEOPLE AT LARGE PERHAPS THE MOST DISAGREEABLE, IF NOT REPULSIVE, IN THE WORLD"
HOWE, John Badlam. Common Sense, the Mathematics, and the Metaphysics of Money. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1881. Octavo, original green cloth. $750.
First edition of Howe's strongly worded book arguing against the commodity and/or mercantile value of money.
Indiana state legislator and financier John Badlam Howe was the co-founder of a highly successful bank that later became part of the State Bank of Indiana. During his tenure there, he wrote a number of works on the theory of money, political economy, and finance that were widely used as college textbooks. This book attempts to bring together those works and, in doing so, presents a single unified work on the inherent worthlessness of money and the foolishness of believing that any aspect of money—its material composition, its symbolic value, its agreed value—can confer any worth upon it. Here, Howe studies its value in terms of the relationship between money and the commodities that exist in the center of monetary transactions, attempting to get to the core of the monetary system and to derive some sense from it.
Interior with only a small marginal dampstain to first few leaves, a few tiny spots of soiling to cloth, light wear mainly to extremities of binding. An extremely good copy. Scarce.