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PETTY, William.

Political Arithmetick,

Or A Discourse Concerning The Extent and Value of Lands, People, Buildings; Husbandry, Manufacture, Commerce, Fishery, Artizans, Seamen, Soldiers; Publick Revenues, Interest, Taxes, Superlucration, Registries, Banks; Valuation of Men, Increasing of Seamen, of Militia's, Harbours, Situation, Shipping, Power at Sea, &c. As the same relates to every Country in general, but more particularly to the Territories of His Majesty of Great Britain, and his Neighbours of Holland, Zealand, and France.

Published: London: for Robert Clavel, and Hen. Mortlock, 1691

Stock code: 92361

Price: £3,750

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Second edition, first published the previous year, of what is by title at least Petty’s key work, posthumously published. After training as a doctor and being admitted to the College of Physicians, Petty worked for many years as an administrator in Ireland, and was a founding member of the Royal Society. He has gone down in history as the originator of statistical analysis under the name of political arithmetic. He established important themes and methods for classical economists, and his works provide abundant detail of the physical and human geography of seventeenth-century Ireland and England. The work was originally published with the date 1690 (the initial licence leaf is dated 7 November 1690). “Apart from dropping a comma in the fourth line in some copies and the change of date, the title-page is identical with that of [the edition of 1690] and is printed from the same setting of type.The imprimatur and the rest of the book have been reset line-by-line including the Errata, though some of them have been corrected.” (Keynes)

Octavo (172 106 mm), with imprimatur leaf and final adverts. Contemporary mottled sheep, red morocco spine label. Head of spine and three corners neatly patched in sprinkled calf. First four leaves slightly shorter at head. A crisp, clean copy.

Bibliography: Goldsmiths' 2869; Keynes 35; Kress 1770; Wing P1933.

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