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17.: From ADAM FERGUSON - Adam Smith, Glasgow Edition of the Works and Correspondence Vol. 6 Correspondence of Adam Smith 
Correspondence of Adam Smith, ed. E. C. Mossner and I. S. Ross, vol. VI of the Glasgow Edition of the Works and Correspondence of Adam Smith (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1987).
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From ADAM FERGUSON1
Groningen, Oct. 1754
[Ferguson requests Smith to address a reply to him at Rotterdam2 ] without any clerical titles, for I am a downright layman.
[1 ]Adam Ferguson (1723–1816) clergyman, professor, pioneer sociologist; educ. Perth and St. Andrews University; Gaelic speaker; chaplain to the Black Watch, said to have served at Fontenoy 1745, resigned his commission 1754; Hume’s successor as Keeper of the Advocate’s Library 1757; Professor of Natural Philosophy, Edinburgh 1759, of Moral Philosophy 1764, of Mathematics 1785; Secretary to the Conciliation Commission sent to Philadelphia 1778. His most important book was An Essay on the History of Civil Society (1767). Its publication led to charges that he had plagiarized Smith’s ideas, and this was alleged to have caused a coolness between the two men (Carlyle 299). Priority in time of the Essay over WN caused Marx to regard Ferguson as Smith’s ‘teacher’, e.g. in the matter of the disadvantages of the division of labour (Capital I.xiv.5). Ferguson was reconciled to Smith during the latter’s final illness. His other chief works were The History of the Progress and Termination of the Roman Republic (1783) and Principles of Moral and Political Science (1792). With Hume, Smith, John Millar, Robertson, and Kames, Ferguson was one of the leaders of what has become known as the Scottish school of sociological historians: see the references cited in Ian Ross, Lord Kames and the Scotland of his Day (Oxford, 1972), 186 n. 2; also David Kettler, Ferguson (Ohio State U.P. 1965).
[2 ]Rotterdam’s University was frequented by Scots studying Roman law.