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condensation of his book, lately published, and to which I have referred above. I have expressed my opinion of this work on page 159.
In this article from the London Nineteenth Century Review for this month, November, 1894, The Monometalist Creed, which I would call a Brief rather than a Creed, it is noticeable that, as in his late book, Bimetalism, Macleod still omits to mention even the name of Wolowski, who, in 1864, had so thoroughly disproved the statement that Sir Thomas Gresham was entitled to be considered the great discoverer of what Macleod in 1858 called the Gresham law.
In 1862, Roscher's paper on Oresme's treatise was presented to the Institute of France, and Wolowski's étude on Oresme's treatise was read at the annual meeting of the Institute. In 1864, Wolowski printed the original Latin and old French texts, showing that Oresme and Copernicus 1 had understood and declared this law long before Gresham was born. But
Cossa's Introduction, Etc.
Macleod continued to claim it as Gresham's great discovery.
Thus in his Elements of Banking, published in 1876, Macleod says: “Sir Thomas Gresham explained the cause, whence we have called it Gresham Law.”
And even in the last edition of his Theory of Credit, vol. ii., published in 1890, Macleod says:“Sir Thomas Gresham first explained the reason to Queen Elizabeth, and therefore we have called it • Gresham Law of the Coinage,' and this name is now universally recognized.”
But in the English edition of Cossa's great standard work, published in 1893, Introduction to the Study of Political Economy, the facts as stated by Wolowski are plainly set forth in English, and now in Macleod's book, published in July, 1894, . and in his magazine article, published this November, Macleod says that “it ought to be called the law of Oresme, Copernicus, and Gresham,” but he does not mention Wolowski's name, although he is plainly much indebted to Wolowski's very able work, and to the important notices it con
1 This work contains a valuable bibliology.
tains on Oresme, by Roscher and Wolowski.
I cannot recollect that Macleod has ever mentioned Wolowski, and as Macleod's voluminous works are mostly published without indexes, it is difficult to ascertain. But Macleod's statement in this month's Nineteenth Century, that the great treatise of Oresme, “in twenty-six chapters, has only recently been brought to the notice of economists,” requires to be modified by stating the fact that this treatise was most elaborately published thirty years ago by W. L. Wolowski with very valuable notes.
Authors of great repute among the gold monometallists formerly found much fault with Macleod's “peculiar views,” “opposition to Say and Mill on credit, and to Ricardo on rent,” etc. He was said to be “at issue with the recognized authorities, and that, too, on points of the first importance.” 1
Luigi Cossa said : “ Macleod is a Macleod's Dangerous Theory.
1 See The Readers' Guide in Economics, etc., edited by Bowker and Iles.
learned, acute, but paradoxical writer, combining good observations on special questions with dangerous errors and old sophisms.” And in another place Cossa says: “Macleod has repeated his errors in voluminous productions and then summarized them in Economics for Beginners."
There have been many such criticisms.
None in America know better than the editors of the Evening Post the dangerous character of much of the teachings of Macleod and the justness of Cossa's criticisms.
Macleod's favorite theory is that “credit is as good as money.” He says : “If a bank can maintain in circulation a quantity of credit in excess of the cash it holds, that is, for all practical purposes, an augmentation of the capital of the country." Mr. Horace White, one of the editors of the Post and also of the Nation, once wrote, Macleod “confounds capital and credit.”
The author and the translator of Cossa's above-mentioned work acknowledged their obligation to the Nation, and Mr. White also had a translation made of Cossa's work on Taxation and wrote an introduction and notes for it and copyrighted the book here.
It is interesting to observe how gold monometallists now speak of Macleod's work with unqualified praise. A similar good fortune has attended Giffen, although many thoughtful readers must prefer Giffen, the philosophical writer who expounded the dangers arising from the scarcity of gold, to Giffen, the Secretary of the Board of Trade, gold monometallistic writer on the London Economist, and a chief clubber of the bimetallists.
Giffen once wrote: “ The fall in prices in such a general way as to amount to what is known as a rise in the purchasing power of gold is generally-I may say universally-admitted.”
Again, in 1879: “An appreciation of the money of a country forced on by a government is simply a measure for disabling the productive powers of the people, and making them poorer than they would otherwise be.” But this was before
1 Head of the Statistical Department.