An Essay on the Governing Causes of the Natural Rate of Interest: Wherein the Sentiments of Sir William Petty and Mr. Locke, on That Head, Are Considered

An Essay on the Governing Causes of the Natural Rate of Interest: Wherein the Sentiments of Sir William Petty and Mr. Locke, on That Head, Are Considered

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An Essay on the Governing Causes of the Natural Rate of Interest: Wherein the Sentiments of Sir William Petty and Mr. Locke, on That Head, Are Considered

An Essay on the Governing Causes of the Natural Rate of Interest: Wherein the Sentiments of Sir William Petty and Mr. Locke, on That Head, Are Considered

Read FREE!

Excerpt

The circumstances of Joseph Massie's life are hidden in the same irritating obscurity that enshrouds other notable English economic writers -- Vanderlint, Harris -- of the middle eighteenth century. We know only of his literary productivity in the period from 1750 to 1765, and of his death -- the latter recorded in a bare note in the Gentleman's Magazine: "November, [1784]. In Holbourn, Mr. Joseph Massie, well known for his political writings." Some of his tracts are inscribed to statesmen of the period in the deferential manner that suggests the favor-seeking pamphleteer rather than the detached philosopher, and this impression is confirmed by the infrequent mention of his writings or opinions in contemporary economic literature.

As a matter of fact, it is as bibliographer rather than as author that Massie figures largest in the history of economic thought. The "Fifteen Hundred, or more, Books and Pamphlets" concerning "the Commerce, Coin, and Colonies of Great Britain" which he had been "above Twelve Years in making" -- though he "resided in London, and was not sparing of either Time or Money to enlarge it"-- were sold in 1760, and thereafter dispersed, lost or hidden -- how and in what manner we have no knowledge. The only clue is Massie's own brief memorandum: "Nov . 1760. Sold the whole Collection Excepting those under Five Heads -- Viz -- Duplicates -- Tables -- Abstract of Laws -- Single Acts -- Treaties."

But Massie left a monument to his zeal in an admirably compiled finding-list which he continued to revise and extend even after he had disposed of the actual collection, and this 'Alpha-

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