Steuart Sir James

Steuart Sir James

Steuart, Sir James (1712-80), Scottish economist. He studied law at the University of Edinburgh and after some years' practice took up the cause of the Young Pretender. He lived in exile for eighteen years after the battle of Culloden Moor and during his enforced leisure studied political economy. His major work, the first in the English language to bear the title Principles of Political Economy (1767), was an early attempt to systematize knowledge on the subject. It was overshadowed by Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations published less than a decade later. His importance lies mainly in his discussions of finance and in his theory of population, which anticipated that of Malthus.

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