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On the wealth of the British Empire, focussing on its overseas possessions

A treatise on the wealth, power, and resources, of the British Empire, in every quarter of the world, including the East Indies: the rise and progress of the funding system explained; ...
London, 1814. 4to. With many letterpress tables in text. Contemporary tree calf, gold-tooled spine; rebacked, with the original backstrip laid down. XII, 451, [1 blank], 91, [1 blank] pp.
€ 3,500
First edition of a work on the wealth of the British Empire at the end of the Napoleonic wars, by the Scottish merchant and magistrate Patrick Calquhoun (1745-1820). "The object of this work is to explain, as far as explanation had been practicable, the foundation upon which the power and resources of the British Empire rests" (preface), focussing on the overseas colonies and its revenue and produce. The first few chapters contain estimates of the revenues of British public and private properties, both in Great Britain and Ireland and in the "the colonies and dependencies of the Crown" (table of contents), and how the revenues are distributed. Other chapters focus on the public income and debts of Great Britain, still others calculate the wealth of the British properties in Europe, North America, Africa and the West- and East-Indies, including their possessions around the Indian Ocean. Calquhoun also estimates the possibilities of future wealth and employment, suggesting, among other things, large scale emigration to the colonies. One chapter is devoted to the British colony of New South Wales in Australia.With a bookplate on paste-down. Some foxing and marginal water stains. Binding rubbed along the extremities. Overall in good condition. Ferguson 574a; O'Brien, The industrial revolution and British society, p. 128; Roncaglia, A brief history of economic thought, pp. 117, 277.
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