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RUE DU COQ, NPAR TAB LOUVRE.
· RUE VIVIENNE.
ON THE ADVANTAGES TO BE DERIVED FROM THE STUDY
OF POLITICAL ECONOMY.* .
Man, after all, has but a Soul and a Body; -and we can only make him happy by ministering to the wants of the one or the other. These wants, and the enjoyments which result from supplying them, differ, no doubt, both in degree and in dignity, according as they refer to the spiritual or animal part of our complex nature—though, in its happiest state, both are capable of being very harmoniously blended. Those that belong to the mind are the highest certainly, and the best-but their importance is not so early or so universally felt :--the pursuit of them forms scarcely any part of the occupation of rude nations; and, even in the most civilized, they are but little valued or understood by the great body of the people.
To this class, besides the hopes of Religion and the testimony of approving conscience, which may subsist in minds not very highly cultivated, belong the gratifications arising from the exercise of Intellect, Imagination, and Taste, together with the enjoyments that spring from the benevolent Affections, and those higher sympathies of our nature, which give rise to the love of Country or of Fame, and all those exalting tendencies which Lord Bacon has emphatically termed Heroic desires.
The lower wants and gratifications, again, to which the toils and wishes of the great bulk of mankind are nearly confined, have for their object little more than what may be comprised under the familiar but comprehensive name of the Necessaries, the Comforts, and the Luxuries of their daily esistence—“meat, clothes, and fire;” in their simplest, or their most exquisite forms--and the leisure and security and importance that belong to the possession of Property.
Political Economy, in the exercise of its primary and direct functions, aims only at the multiplication of these last and lower gratifications. It is the science of Wealth, Trade, and Population : --and its end and object is, to show how Industry may be employed to the best advantage -or how, with the least labour and the least waste of materials, the greatest quantity of comfort and enjoyment may be created for the use
If there be any certainty in such a science as this, and if it can really reveal and establish to its disciples any truths that are not already known to all thinking men, it is needless to say, that in practical value and importance It must far transcend any thing to which the name of science has hitherto ...M“Culloch's Discourse on the Rise, Progress, and Importance of Political Economy,--Vol. xlii, page 1. November, 1825.