‘THE BEST BOOK EVER WRITTEN ON PUBLIC FINANCE’

Principii di economia finanziaria.

Turin, Giulio Einaudi, 1939.

Large 8vo, pp. xxxii, 419, [1] blank, [4]; edges browned throughout; a good copy, uncut in the original printed stiff-paper wrappers, a little worn and chipped at extremities, lower joint cracking at foot of spine.

£150

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Revised and definitive edition. The economist and politician Antonio De Viti de Marco (1858–1943) was Professor of Political Economy and Public Finance at the Universities of Camerino, Macerata, Piava, and Rome. He ‘was not a prolific writer – he spent much time patiently revising his own works – but he exerted a fundamental influence on the typically Italian tradition of creating a “pure” theory of public finance … De Viti de Marco’s name … is primarily connected with his Principii di economia finanziaria, which was the subject of various drafts and revisions in 1923, 1928, 1934 and 1939. The definitive edition of this work contains a masterly preface by Luigi Einaudi which fully upholds “for spontaneous universal recognition” the position of supremacy held by De Viti de Marco over other researchers in the field of public finance. In addition, when the book was translated into English, it was generally judged to be “the best book ever written on public finance”. De Viti de Marco’s Principii has been translated into all the major languages, and it embodies the most complete attempt to construct an “economic” theory of the entire financial system, whose final aim is the systematic application of the theory of marginal utility to financial problems’ (The New Palgrave IV, 817).

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