SMITH, ADAM. 1723-1790.
An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations. London: for W. Strahan & T. Cadell, 1776. 2 volumes. , 510; , 587,  pp. 4to (287 x 222 mm). Period full brown mottled calf, covers with gilt floral and foliate panel, spine in seven compartments, two of which with gilt-lettered alternating black and green labels, the others with gilt floral and foliate tooling, custom cloth clamshell case. A few instances of light spotting, some faint offsetting from text, but generally internally clean, bindings with joints carefully reinforced, some corners renewed, several stray marks, but an attractive, generously margined example.
First edition. Smith spent ten years writing and perfecting this first major expression of the theory that the individual had the right to be unimpeded in the exercise of economic activity. The certainty of its criticism and its grasp of human nature have made it the first and greatest classic of modern economic thought. Printing and the Mind of Man 221.
Provenance: Scottish historian Alexander Fraser Tytlers copy with his ownership signature on both titles.
- Wanting half-title second volume, pagination as catalogued.