"A SUBSTANTIAL CONTRIBUTION TO GENERAL ECONOMICS… HISTORICALLY SIGNIFICANT": MALTHUS ON RENT, 1815 FIRST EDITION
MALTHUS, Thomas Robert. An Inquiry into the Nature and Progress of Rent. London: John Murray, 1815. Slim octavo, modern marbled boards; pp. 61. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. $12,000.
First edition of this "substantial contribution to general economics," an important influence on Ricardo.
In 1805, Malthus "became professor of history and political economy at the newly founded college of Haileybury… [where] he gave lectures on political economy, which, as he declares, the hearers not only understood, but 'did not even find dull.' The lectures led him to consider the problem of rent. The theory at which he arrived is partly indicated in two pamphlets upon the corn laws, published in 1814 and 1815, and is fully given in the tract upon The Nature and Progress of Rent (which was being printed in January 1815). The doctrine thus formulated has been generally accepted by later economists" (DNB). "A substantial contribution to general economics… The rent theory it propounded… [is] historically significant because it attracted [Malthus' friend and correspondent David] Ricardo from money into general economics and supplied him with an important building block" for his work of "determining the distribution of national income between landowners, capitalists and workers" (Niehans, 79, 88). Bound with publisher's eight-page catalogue at rear, dated February, 1815. Goldsmiths' 21130. Kress B.6536. Lowndes, 1459.
Minor spotting to rehinged title page and "Advertisement" leaf; text generally clean, marbled boards fine. Handsomely boxed.