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248.: To LE DUC DE LA ROCHEFOUCAULD - 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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Economic Journal vi (1896), 165–6; I.C. Lundberg, Turgot’s Unknown Translator: The Réflexions and Adam Smith (The Hague, 1964), 44–5.
Edinburgh, 1 Nov. 1785
My Lord Duke,
I should certainly have been very happy to have communicated to your Grace any letters which the ever–to–be–regretted Mr Turgot had done me the honour to write to me; and by that means, to have the distinguished honour of being recorded as one of his correspondents.1 But tho’ I had the happiness of his acquaintance, and, I flattered myself, even of his friendship and esteem, I never had that of his correspondence. He was so good as to send me a copy of the Proces Verbal of what passed at the bed of justice upon the registration of his six edicts which did so much honour to their Author, and, had they been executed without alteration, would have proved so beneficial to his country.2 But the Present (which I preserve as I most valuable monument of a person whom I remember with so much veneration) was not accompanied with any Letter.
I expect all the bad consequences from the chambers of Commerce and manufactures establishing in different parts of this Country, which your Grace seems to foresee.3 In a Country where Clamour always intimidates and faction often oppresses the Government, the regulations of Commerce are commonly dictated by those who are most interested to deceive and impose upon the Public.
I have not forgot what I promised to your Grace in an edition of the ‘Theory of Moral Sentiments,’ which I hope to execute before the end of the ensuing winter.4 I have likewise two other great works upon the anvil; the one is a sort of Philosophical History of all the different branches of Literature, of Philosophy, Poetry and Eloquence; the other is a sort of theory and History of Law and Government.5 The materials of both are in a great measure collected, and some Part of both is put into tollerable good order. But the indolence of old age, tho’ I struggle violently against it, I feel coming fast upon me, and whether I shall ever be able to finish either is extremely uncertain.
May I beg to be remembered in the most respectful manner to the Dutchess D’Anville and to the Dutchess Chabot and that your Grace will do me the honour to believe me to be, with the highest regard,
My Lord Duke, Your Grace’s most obliged, most obedient and most faithful humble servant
[1 ]No letter asking about Turgot’s correspondence with Smith has survived; for other topics of common interest, see La Rochefoucauld’s letters of 3 Mar. 1778 and 6 Aug. 1779 (Nos. 194 and 199).
[2 ]Smith’s copy of Procès verbal de ce qui s’est passé au Lit de Justice tenu par le Roi à Versailles, le mardi douze mars 1776 (Paris, 1776) is bound with Jacques Necker, Compte rendu au Roi (Paris, 1786) in EUL (Bonar 122).
[3 ]The first meeting of the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce was held on 1 Jan. 1783. It was interested chiefly in raising the standard of goods for sale, urging the Government to ease the burden of taxation, reducing tariffs on a reciprocal basis, and eliminating illicit trading and smuggling. Correspondence was carried on with London merchants and the Chambers of Commerce of Bristol and Liverpool. On 14 Mar. 1785 a decision was taken in London to form ‘The General Chamber of Manufacturers of Great Britain’. In Feb. 1786 there was established ‘The Chamber of Commerce and Manufactures in the City of Edinburgh’. Predictably, from Smith’s point of view, the Chambers of Commerce were opposed to free trade with Ireland, but they were more favourably disposed to the Eden Treaty of 1786 which aimed at opening up trade with France (Hamilton 272–8).
[4 ]During the years left to him, Smith laboured at revising TMS; see Letters 244, 276, and 287 addressed to Cadell, dated 21 Apr. 1785, 15 Mar. 1788, and 31 Mar. 1789. The corrected and expanded ed. 6 was available by May 1790; see Letters 294 and 295 also to Cadell, dated 16 and 25 May 1790.
[5 ]For the history of the ‘great works’ that Smith had ‘upon the anvil’ see EPS, LJ (A and B), and LRBL. His executors Joseph Black and James Hutton made a selection for EPS (1795).