8vo, pp. viii, 153, ; woodcut printer’s device and tail-piece; one or two very light spots, but a very good copy in contemporary sprinkled calf, flat spine with the remains of gilt fleurons (gilding mostly worn off), red morocco lettering-piece; spine rubbed and chipped at head, small hole at foot, corners a little worn, a few scratches to sides, extremities rubbed; contemporary ink initials M. D. on the title-page.
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L’ami du peuple Français, ou mémoire adressé à M. Turgot, contrôleur des finances, par le fils d’un laboureur.
First edition thus, rare, of an attack on the French tax system published on the eve of Turgot’s demise. Set out as a narrative, this work outlines the family history of the author as a tale of hard work, of strife against the injustice and abuse of tax collectors, progressive failure to meet impossible demands from thriving tax farmers, jail and confiscation, and ultimately ruin. Through his exemplary story the author calls out to Turgot for a radical reform. He details the French fiscal set-up describing taxes, the severely uneven distribution of their impact, and the cruelty of a system which appears solely to serve the interest of the tax collectors, to the detriment of both crown and people. This appears to be the reprint of a part of a work sometimes attributed to Turgot (Quérard): Sur les finances, ouvrage posthume de Pierre André ****** fils d’un bon laboureur.
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GASSER, Simon Peter.
Einleitung zu den Oeconomischen Politischen und Cameral-Wissenschaften, worrinen für dieses mal die Oeconomico-Cameralia von den Domainen- oder Cammer- auch andern Gütern, deren Administration und Anschlägen, so wol des Ackerbaues als anderer Pertinentien halber, samt den Regalien angezeiget und erläutert werden. Nebst einem Vorbericht von der Fundation der neuen œconomischen Profession, und des Allerdurchlautigsten Stifters eigentlichen allergnädigsten Absicht.
First edition. Simon Peter Gasser (1676–1745) was appointed by Friedrich Wilhelm I to the first chair of economy to be founded in Prussia, at the University of Halle in 1727, where Gasser had until then been a lecturer in law. The present work, an introduction to the science of cameralism, and dedicated to his patron, the king – ‘great Œconomus, and still greater soldier’ – is his only work of the kind (he published numerous books in Latin on law). It represents an important landmark of cameralism, above all for its commentary on the king’s desire to promote that science as a professional discipline in the universities, as signified by the new chair at Halle. See A. W. Small, The Cameralists, pp. 206–221; Palgrave II, 187; Roscher, Geschichte der Nationale-Oekonomik, pp. 371–6.
Considerations upon the nature and tendency of free institutions.
First edition, scarce in commerce, of this ‘significant contribution to American thought’ written by a Supreme Court judge who advocated the ‘popular election of judges for specific terms’ (Supreme Court of Ohio biographies online, ‘Grimke’). Grimke (1791-1862) studied at Yale and Carolina, rising quickly to become a judge of the Court of Common Pleas and then of the Supreme Court (‘Publisher’s Preface’ to The Works of Frederick Grimke, 1871). This work is divided into four books which treat government and elections, the constitution, institutions (medical, religious, military etc.), and the American constitution the context of European government.