circulation of money and the dynamics of supply and demandwith a complement of 14 tables of data

Nuovo trattato del modo di regolare la moneta.

Venice, Lorenzo Baseggio, 1752.

4to, pp. [12], 152; 14 folding plates plus 1 folding leaf with a synoptic table of currencies; mild water staining to the lower gutters of the first two gatherings, but a fine, very attractive copy, uncut in the original carta rustica; upper hinge loose but holding; early ink library shelfmark to the front pastedown.

£5000

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US $6688€5665

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Very scarce first edition. Cappello’s work seeks to deduce the general principles regulating supply and demand by studying the relative circulation of gold and silver across twelve international markets. He offers the empirical basis of his study in fourteen tables which provide exhaustive details of his observations.

Cappello was a Venetian patrician who travelled to Spain, Germany and England on diplomatic missions on behalf of the Republic. Little is known about him, but one known detail is that of Galiani visiting him in 1751 and giving him a copy of his Della moneta, published the year before. Cappello’s book played a considerable part in the mid-eighteenth century debates on coinage and the circulation of money, together with works such as Galiani’s and those of other Italian writers including Broggia, Belloni (who praised the Nuovo trattato in the revised edition of his Dissertazione), Carli, Costantini, Fabbrini, Spinelli. Among them, Capello’s peculiar strength lays more in the acquisition, selection and ordering of useful data then in any theoretical innovation. Among his proposals, as a measure for reducing the disorderly proliferation of coinages within the national market, is that, within the boundaries of a state, foreign currencies should be treated as goods for sale –and therefore purely subjected to market forces- rather than as units of account or as a medium of exchange.

Einaudi 860; Higgs 328; Kress Italian 281; Kress 5187; Goldsmiths’ 8725; Melzi, II, 260; Cicogna 1544; not in Mattioli. COPAC lists 2 copies in the UK (UL and LSE), OCLC finds 3 copies in the US (Kress, Chicago, Northwestern).

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