Human Sciences

Contact Barbara Scalvini or Jonathan Harrison

Human Sciences at Quaritch embraces a wide range of books and manuscripts documenting the history of ideas from the earliest times up to about 1960. Our strengths are in the history of economic thought and in philosophy, but we also deal in law; finance and banking (including speculation, actuarial science and insurance); politics and political theory; sociology; psychology; agriculture; education; logic; and the theory of language.

Some notable items which have recently passed through our hands include the only known copy of the Communist Manifesto inscribed by Karl Marx, Rudolf Carnap’s annotated copy of Wittgenstein’s Tractatus (Logisch-philosophische Abhandlung), Joseph Penso de la Vega’s Confusion de Confusiones (1688, the first book to describe the practice of a stock-exchange) and a copy of Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (4th edition, 1786), inscribed in Smith's own hand to Bonnie Prince Charlie's private secretary.

As well as dealing in individual books and manuscripts, we also offer collections. In recent years we have sold author collections of Friedrich Nietzsche, Bertrand Russell, Thorstein Veblen, Emile Durkheim and Jeremy Bentham. Among subject collections we have offered are the Herwood Library of accounting literature (including Pacioli's Summa de Arithmetica, 1494, the first printed exposition of double-entry book-keeping); the philosophy of language; texts pertaining to the theory and study of language in the West, and the history of probability - the calculus of probabilities, statistics and their applications.

  1. [LAW, John.]

    Abbildung des auf der Strasse Quincampoix in Paris entstandenen so berühmten Actien-Handel. Excudit C. Weigel nach...

    [1720.]

    This engraving is a German version of ‘Rue Quinquempoix en l'Année 1720’(BM Catalogue 1655). It gives a view, in angular perspective, of the Rue Quinquempoix, Paris, with crowds of persons assembled there during the share mania of the Mississippi, South Sea, and other schemes which bubbled in the...

    £1250

  2. [LAW, John]. WOOD, John Philip

    The antient and modern State of the Parish of Cramond. To which are added, biographical and genealogical...

    Edinburgh, John Paterson, 1794.

    First edition. The Antient and modern State of the Parish of Cramond has the distinction of not only preserving much local information which might otherwise have been lost, but is also one of the earliest genealogical and biographical accounts of the life and fortunes of John Law, Comptroller-General...

    £750

  3. HUSKISSON, William (1770-1830), politician.

    Autograph letter signed (‘W Huskisson’) to an unnamed ‘Dear Sir’.

    18 Hertford Street [London], 21 December, 1810.

    Huskisson was a leading exponent of strict adherence to the Gold standard and an opponent of the perceived over-issue of bank notes in the early nineteenth century. This letter was written only a few months after Huskisson had published his important pamphlet, The question concerning the depreciation...

    £150

  4. [WILLIAMS.]

    Bankers stopping Payment.

    A country bumpkin sits on a small wooden chair, facing a bank-counter inscribed Small Stock & Co. Three elderly men stand behind it registering gloomy apprehension; one leans on the counter, his hands raised above a cheque: Small Stock & Co. please pay to my charge £50.0.0 S. Simple. He says: I am sorry...

    £575

  5. [LONDON ASSURANCE CORPORATION.]

    By-laws, orders, and rules, for the good government of the corporation of the London assurance....

    London, n.p., 1722.

    First edition of the by-laws of the London Assurance Corporation, which, along with The Royal Exchange Assurance Corporation, was constituted and granted sole rights, excepting private individuals, to the granting of assurance and bottomry by ‘The Bubble Act’ of 1720. The right to self-govern, reflected...

    £1500

  6. SAY, Léon.

    [cover title: ] La Société coopérative est la meilleure des caisses d’épargne.

    Lille, L. Danel, [1866?].

    First edition. Léon Say (1826–1896), grandson of Jean-Baptiste Say, ‘became one of the most prominent statesmen of the French Third Republic. He served as Finance Minister from 1872 to 1879, and again in 1882, overseeing the largest financial operation of the century – payment of war reparations...

    £120

  7. ANDREADES, Andreas Michael.

    De la monnaie et de la puissance d’achat des métaux précieux dans l’Empire Byzantin . . . Extrait...

    Liège, Imprimerie H. Vaillant-Carmanne, 1924.

    An offprint, with its own title-page and pagination, of this important study. This is a presentation copy, inscribed in ink ‘To Robert Byron. A. A.’ at the head of the front wrapper. Andreades was the first professor of public finance at the University of Athens and the author of a monumental work...

    £45

  8. BELLONI, Girolami, Marchese.

    Del Commercio dissertazione.

    Rome, Niccolo and Marco Pagliarini, 1757.

    Second edition to be authorized by Belloni, (first, 1750) – the first edition to include the author’s considerations on ‘imaginary money’ (pp. 135-154) – of a work notable for its argument in favour of restrictions on the export of money by the Vatican banker Girolamo Belloni (1688–1760)....

    £300

  9. JUGLAR, Clément.

    Des crises commerciales et de leur retour périodique en France, en Angleterre et aux Etats-Unis …

    Paris, Guillaumin, 1889.

    Second edition, greatly enlarged, of the book that laid the foundation of modern business cycle analysis. First published in 1862, Les crises commerciales is the principal work of a man whom Schumpeter says ‘must be ranked, as to talent and command of scientific method, among the greatest economists...

    £950

  10. [GREAT BRITAIN: PARLIAMENT].

    [Drop-head title:] ‘An act for repealing the several duties of customs and excise, and granting...

    London, Charles Eyre and Andrew Strahan, 1787.

    Rare first edition of the consolidation act that revolutionised British handling of customs and excise and the problem of smuggling, in line with Adam Smith’s 1776 recommendations.

    £2750

  11. STEELE, Richard.

    [Eight works by and relating to him].

    London, 1715-1720.

    A splendid collection of pamphlets by and relating to Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729), army officer, playwright, theatre manager, essayist, editor of the Tatler, Spectator and Guardian, Whig MP and propagandist, covering many facets of his diverse career. This volume belonged to Sir Thomas Clarke, a protegé...

    £2500

  12. PELLISSERY, Roch-Antoine de.

    Eloge politique de Colbert: qui n’a point été présenté à l’Academie Française pour le prix...

    Lausanne, n.p., 1775.

    First edition. This work provides a detailed examination of Colbert’s financial and economic work, with detailed information about the situation in France since his ministry. Colbert was the contrôleur général under Louis XIV and a firm believer in the mercantilist doctrine that the expansion of...

    £300

  13. GANILH, Charles.

    Essai politique sur le revenu public des peuples de l’antiquité, du moyen age, des siècles modernes, et spécialement...

    Paris, Giguet & Michaud, 1806.

    First edition, a very nice set. ‘Cet imporant ouvrage sur les recettes publiques contient une histoire financière et une théorie de l’impôt. Ganilh passe rapidement sur la partie historique et traite de la science du revenu public en 4 livres: législation et administration, dépenses publiques,...

    £650

  14. FOSTER, John Leslie.

    An essay on the principle of commercial exchanges, and more particularly of the exchange between Great Britain...

    London, J. Hatchard, 1804.

    First edition of a contemporary response to the Irish Currency Report of 1804 written by the Irish-born judge John L. Foster. The 1804 Irish Currency Report was a direct precursor to the more famous Bullion Report of 1810. Indeed, the former ‘…contains a large part of the doctrine later incorporated...

    £2250

  15. JACOB, William.

    An Historical Inquiry into the production and consumption of the precious metals …

    London, John Murray, 1831.

    First edition. William Jacob (1762?–1851) was appointed to the comptrollership of corn returns in 1822. ‘On the suggestion of Huskisson, [Jacob] undertook an inquiry into the production and consumption of the precious metals. This work shows great research, but is defective, which may be attributed...

    £400

  16. [SOUTH AND CENTRAL AMERICAN COINAGE.]

    The King’s Assay Master’s Report, with Tables, shewing the Weights and Fineness of the...

    [London, 1834].

    Three tables of coinage weights and fineness for Mexico, Central America, Bolivia, Peru, Chile, Rio Plata and Columbia, drawn up by Robert and Henry Bingley of the Assay Office ‘to enable Government to form a correct estimate of the value of South American Dollars, as a supply for the military chests...

    £250

  17. FERRARA, Francesco.

    La tassa sul macinato. Dev’ella abolirsi, mantenersi o riformarsi?

    Florence, successors of Le Monnier, 1871.

    First edition of a contribution by Ferrara on the question of the macinato or Italian grist tax.

    £350

  18. CONDILLAC, Etienne Bonnot de, abbé.

    Le commerce et le gouvernement, considérés relativement l’un à l’autre.

    Amsterdam, et se touve à Paris, chez Jombert et Cellot, 1776.

    One of the three editions to appear in the year of the first edition, this is the one produced in two volumes with separate pagination, and without the errata, with errors partially corrected in the text. The other two editions, including the first, were published in a single volume.

    £600

  19. [NAVEAU, Jean-Baptiste].

    Le financier citoyen.

    [N. p., n. p.,] 1757.

    A fine copy of the first edition of this anonymously published work on the financial administration of France. All we know about Jean-Baptiste Naveau (1716–1762) is that he was ‘directeur de correspondance et fermier des devoirs de Bretagne’ (Quérard). This work examines the policies of the ministry...

    £650

  20. [SOUTH SEA COMPANY. ANONYMOUS].

    A letter to a member of parliament wherein the unreasonableness and improbability of binding down...

    London, n.p., 1721.

    First edition of a concise pamphlet arguing against the reduction of redeemable South Sea Company stock to £300. The author presents a strong succinct argument by contrasting the treatment of the redeemable-subscribers with that of their peers: ‘The Fourth Money-Subscriber, out of his Money which...

    £350