Wheatley, John, An essay on the theory of money and principles of commerce

(London :  Printed for T. Cadell and W. Davies, by W. Bulmer and Co.,  1807-1822.)



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On the Functions of Money.

CHAPTER .Most of the errors in the present commercial and
financial system of Europe appear to me to have arisen
from a mistaken opinion of the functions of money. In
the familiar intercourse of society money and wealth have
always been regarded synonymous terms ; and as the
principle that an increase of money constituted an increase
of wealth seemed too obvious to the understanding to admit
of investigation, the policy of this, as well as of every
other country, has been exclusively directed to its accu¬
mulation, as the only means of advancing its opulence.

The fundamental positions which I shall adduce for the
purpose of exposing the fallacy of this pohcy are these:

That an increase of the national stock of specie is an
increase of currency and not of capital.

That an increase of currency is not an increase of

And that no one nation can possess a greater relative
currency than another.

The exclusive utility of money consists in its properties
as an universal measure of value, and an universal medium
of exchange. As it forms the universal measure of value,
every one estimates his capital by the quantity of money
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