8vo, pp. , xxvi, 190,  diagrams,  copyright + errata leaf; occasional very light offsetting, but a very good, crisp copy in recent vellum, gilt-lettering piece to spine.
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Del prezzo delle cose tutte mercatabili. Trattato legale-economico ove incidentemente si additano i veri principj della moneta …
Very rare first edition. ‘Valeriani (1758–1828) was something of a polyhistor and much admired in his time and country. The little steam he reserved for economics was put to good use, however, in his theory of prices (Del prezzo delle cose tutte mercatabili, 1806), which could have taught Senior and Mill how to handle supply and demand functions’ (Schumpeter, p. 511n).
‘Economic thinking had advanced much by 1806, when Valeriani published his Del prezzo delle cose tutte mercatabili, from the time when Verri and Frisi had expressed their view that the price is simply in compound proportion to the numbers of sellers and buyers … Valeriani attempted to “put sense” into [Frisi’s formula] by substituting for the numbers of sellers and buyers, the supply and demand of the good.
‘Valeriani distinguishes between “value in genere or in the abstract” of a good and its “specific value”. The “value in genere” is nothing else but the “total utility” of a good … But while “value in the abstract” is always equal to the need, the specific value of a good depends not only on the “value in genere” of the good but also on its quantity. Valeriani is thus grappling with the problem of utility and its relation to the quantity of the good, though for Valeriani the value of a good is not determined by marginal utility but by the average utility: it is in other words the quotient of total utility “in the abstract” divided by the quantity of the good. But as value in the abstract is directly proportional to the need for the good and this need may be expressed by the demand for the good, the specific value, argues Valeriani, may be expressed by the quotient of the demand for the good by its supply or by
where p is the specific value, i the demand and o the supply’ (Theocharis, p. 36f).
Einaudi 5808; Goldsmiths’ 19277; Kress Italian 765; OCLC locates the Chicago copy only.
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SCIENTIFIC AGRICULTURE [YOUNG, Arthur].
A Six Weeks Tour, through the Southern Counties of England and Wales. Describing, particularly, I. The present state of agriculture and manufactures. II. The different methods of cultivating the soil. III. The success attending some late experiments on various grasses, &c. IV. The various prices of labour and provisions. V. The state of the working poor in those counties, wherein the riots were most remarkable. With descriptions and models of such new invented implements of husbandry as deserve to be generally known: interspersed with accounts of the seats of the nobility and gentry, and other subjects worthy of notice. In several letters to a friend. By the author of the Farmer’s Letters.
First edition. ‘Young’s own estimate of this book is that it is one “in which for the first time, the facts and principles of Norfolk husbandry were laid before the public”, but important as these facts were ... the book is more valuable than Young would have us believe. It laid before the public “the fact and principles” of the husbandry of a line of country from Bradfield to London and from London to South Wales, and the details given were quite all-inclusive. They comprised the crop rotations, the implements used, the cost of labour and provisions, which often varied surprisingly in a few miles, the size of farms, and the horses or oxen employed on holdings of different sizes ... Passing reference is [also] made to local industry, such as the manufacture of Witney blankets, and useful facts and figures about it are mentioned’ (Fussell).
Études d’économie sociale (Théorie de la Répartition de la Richesse sociale).
This, the second, definitive edition differs from the first (1896) in containing the ‘Souvenirs du Congrès de Lausanne’. The congress on taxation in Lausanne in 1860, at which Walras read a paper, was a climacteric in his career. In the audience was Louis Ruchonnet, who later became chief of the department of education of the Canton de Vaud and, in 1870, founded a chair of political economy at the faculty of law of the University of Lausanne which he offered to Walras. Though students of law were hardly accessible to innovations in mathematical economics, Walras found in Lausanne the peace and security that enabled him to produce his most important work.