In France the doctrine was represented by Turgot and Condorcet.
ANNE ROBERT JACQUES TURGOT, BARON DE LAUNE (1727-1781), French statesman and economist, was born in Paris on the 10th of May 1727.
He was the youngest son of Michel Etienne Turgot, "provost of the merchants" of Paris, and Madeleine Frangoise Martineau, and came of an old Norman family.
In August 1761 Turgot was appointed intendant of the generalite of Limoges, which included some of the poorest and most over-taxed parts of France; here he remained for 13 years.
Quesnay and Mirabeau had advocated a proportional tax (impot de quotite), but Turgot a distributive tax (impot de repartition).
Another reform was the substitution for the corvee of a tax in money levied on the whole province, the construction of roads being handed over to contractors, by which means Turgot was able to leave his province with a good system of roads, while distributing more justly the expense of their construction.
It may be noted that Turgot always made the cures the agents of his charities and reforms when possible.
Robineau ("Turgot," in Petite bibliotheque economique, 1889), and is followed by Professor W.
After tracing the origin of commerce, Turgot develops Quesnay's theory that the land is the only source of wealth, and divides society into three classes, the productive or agricultural, the salaried (stipendiee) or artisan class, and the land-owning class (classe disponible).
' For the controversy as to how far Adam Smith was influenced by Turgot, see S.
Feilbogen, Smith and Turgot (1892); also E.
Condorcet's statement that Turgot corresponded with Smith is disproved by a letter of Smith to the duc de la Rochefoucauld, published in the Economic Journal (March 1896), p. 165, in which he says, "But tho' I had the happiness of his acquaintance: Turgot owed his appointment to the ministry to Maurepas, the" Mentor "of Louis XVI., to whom he was warmly recommended by the abbe Very, a mutual friend.
Turgot at once set to work to establish free trade in corn, but his edict, which was signed on the 13th of September 1774, met with strong opposition even in the conseil du roi.
Turgot was hated by those who had been interested in the speculations in corn under the regime of the abbe Terray - among whom were included some of the princes of the blood.
Turgot showed great firmness and decision in repressing the riots, and was loyally supported by the king throughout.
Of the six edicts four were of minor importance, and, I flattered myself, even of his friendship and esteem, I never had that of his correspondence," but there is no doubt that Adam Smith met Turgot in Paris, and it is generally admitted that The Wealth of Nations owes a good deal to Turgot.
All might yet have gone well if Turgot could have retained the confidence of the king, but the king could not fail to see that Turgot had not the support of the other ministers.
Whether through jealous y of the ascendancy which Turgot had acquired over the king, or through the natural incompatibility of their characters, he was already inclined to take sides against Turgot, and the reconciliation between him and the queen, which took place about this time, meant that he was henceforth the tool of the Polignac clique and the Choiseul party.
Turgot was opposed to all labour associations of employers or employed, in accordance with his belief in free competition.
On the resignation of Malesherbes (April 1776), whom Turgot wished to replace by the abbe Very, Maurepas proposed to the king as his successor a nonentity named Amelot.
In character Turgot was simple, honourable and upright, with a passion for justice and truth.
Schelle, Turgot (Paris, 1909); and Marquis de Segur, Au Couchant de la monarchie (Paris, 1910), contain much that is based on recent research.
P. Shepherd, Turgot and the Six Edicts (1903), in Columbia Univ.
In this work he ably combated the views of Turgot and other European writers as to the viciousness of the framework of the state governments.
He began his reign under good auspices, with Turgot, the greatest living French statesman, in charge of the disorganized finances; but in less than two years he had yielded to the demand of the vested interests attacked by Turgot's reforms, and dismissed him.
Et Turgot (1910).
In principle it was even held to be the debtor for the amount; hence the inhabitants were jointly responsible, a state of affairs which was not suppressed till the time of Turgot, and even then not completely.
Turgot and Condorcet.
Wetzel, are: that money as coin may have more than its bullion value; that natural interest is determined by the rent of land valued at the sum of money loaned - an anticipation of Turgot; that high wages are not inconsistent with a large foreign trade; that the value of an article is determined by the amount of labour necessary to produce the food consumed in making the article; that manufactures are advantageous but agriculture only is truly productive; and that when practicable (as he did not think it practicable at the end of the War of Independence) state revenue should be raised by direct tax.
Quesnay died on the 16th of December 1774, having lived long enough to see his great pupil, Turgot, in office as minister of finance.
Possessed of easy means and being of hospitable disposition, he kept open house for Helvetius, D'Alembert, Diderot, Condillac, Turgot, Buffon, Grimm, Hume, Garrick, Wilkes, Sterne, and for a time J.
Two pamphlets at least are ascribed to him: " Les Mannequins, conte ou histoire, comme l'on voudra " (against Turgot; anon., Paris, 1776) and " Description historique d'un monstre symbolique pris vivant sur les bords du lac Fagua, pres de Santa-Fe, par les soins de Francisco Xaveiro de Neunris " (against Calonne; Paris, 1784) (A.
In all this he treated French finance rather as a banker than as a profound political economist, and thus fell far short of Turgot, who was the very greatest economist of his day.
The estates opposed most of the intelligent ~nd humane measures proposed by such intendants as Tourny and Turgot to relieve the peasants, whose distress was very great; they did their utmost to render the selfishness of the privileged classes more oppressive and vexatious.
Turgot, the most notable of these latter, was well fitted to play his great part as an enlightened minister, as much from the principle of hard work and domestic economy ot, traditional in his family, as from a maturity of mind 1776.
By the former Turgot hampered the great interests; by the second he thwarted the desires of courtiers not only of the second rank but of the first.
The old courtier Maurepas, jealous of Turgot and desirous of remaining a minister himself, refrained from defending his colleague; and when Turgot, who never knew how to give in, spoke of establishing assemblies of freeholders in the communes and the provinces, in order to relax the tension of over-centralization, Louis XVI., who never dared to pass from sentiment to action, sacrificed his minister to the rancour of the queen, as he had already sacrificed Malesherbes (1776).
More able than Turgot, though a man of smaller ideas, he abrogated the edicts registered by the lits de justice; and unable Necker, or not daring to attack the evil at its root, he thought 1781.
Like Turgot he failed, and for the same reasons.
System, he tried to suppress privilege and fall back upon the social reforms of Turgot, and the financial schemes of Necker, by suggesting once more to the assembly of notables a territorial subsidy from all landed property.
For them the right to work had been asserted, among others by Turgot, as a natural right opposed to the caprices of the arbitrary and selfish aristocracy of the corporations, and a breach had been made in the tyranny of the masters which had endeavoured to set a barrier to the astonishing outburst of industrial force which was destined to characterize the coming age.
He studied for the medical profession, but did not enter upon practice, his attention having been early directed to economic questions through his friendship with Francois Quesnay, Turgot and other leaders of the school known as the Economists.