“THE FIRST AND GREATEST CLASSIC OF MODERN ECONOMIC THOUGHT”: SMITH’S WEALTH OF NATIONS, 1793, SCARCE IN CONTEMPORARY CALF
SMITH, Adam. An Inquiry Into the Nature and Causes of The Wealth of Nations. London: A. Strahan and T. Cadell, 1793. Three volumes. Octavo, contemporary full brown calf expertly rebacked with original spines and red morocco spine labels neatly laid down. $4500.
1793 edition of Smith’s magnum opus, very scarce in contemporary calf.
"Where the political aspects of human rights had taken two centuries to explore, Smith's achievement was to bring the study of economic aspects to the same point in a single work… it is the first and greatest classic of modern economic thought" (PMM 221). Buckle's History of Civilization calls Wealth of Nations "probably the most important book which has ever been written," while economist J.A.R. Mariott asserts that "there is probably no single work in the language which has in its day exercised an influence so profound." First published in 1776. Stated seventh edition. Bound without half titles; one page of advertisements at rear of Volume III. ESTC T95380. Kress B2618. Palgrave III:116. Goldsmiths 15565. Owner ink signature to title page of Volume I and front free endpapers of II and III.
An excellent and desirable copy in nicely restored contemporary calf.