209.: trower to ricardo2[Reply to 205] - David Ricardo, The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, Vol. 7 Letters 1816-1818 
The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, ed. Piero Sraffa with the Collaboration of M.H. Dobb (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2005). Vol. 7 Letters 1816-1818.
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First published by Cambridge University Press in 1951. Copyright 1951, 1952, 1955, 1973 by the Royal Economic Society. This edition of The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo is published by Liberty Fund, Inc., under license from the Royal Economic Society.
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trower to ricardo
[Reply to 205]
Unsted Wood—Godalming March 18. 1817.
On the disputed subject of the relief clause in Rose’s Bill I beg to refer you to two letters I have sent to the times newspaper signed a Manager of a Provident Fund, one appeared on the 21. February and the other on the 18 march —They pretend to nothing but a plain statement of the argument; and it would give me pleasure to think they will meet with your approbation—You will see, that I rest the importance of the clause in question upon its being essential to the success of our Institutions—These are so connected with the subject of the Poor Laws, that it was impossible not to touch upon it, yet it is so fearful a one, that I forbear from pursuing it. In recommending to begin by encreasing wages, I do not mean to suggest any direct interference in the prices of labor, but the adoption of such collateral measures as must materially contribute to quicken the demand for labor. Such for instance as encouraging emigration, reducing, or repealing those taxes which affect most heavily our aggricultural and commercial interests. I am aware, that the Revenue forbids this to any extent unless the taxes are imposed, and I should not hesitate to recommend a new Income tax; a tax which ought never to have been repealed.
An enemy as I am to all interference I ask with fear and trembling, least you should deem me a supporter of vicious and exploded doctrines, what you think would be the effect, under existing circumstances, of regulating the minimum of wages. I see myself many objections to it, yet I wish to hear what you have to say upon the subject. It would diminish the amount of the poor rates, and put a stop to a most mischievous and unjust abuse arising out of the present system— Farmers, and even Gentlemen are getting their work done at the Parish allowance of 7/ or 8/ a week whilst the rate of wages is generally 12/. They do this by turning off their laborers in the first instance, and then engaging men of the Parish at the reduced rate I have mentioned.—
I have been looking in the paper to see if your new publication is announced, pray let me know when it is to make its appearance, I am impatient to see it.
Have you read Armata? I like it very much, tho’ I differ in the view taken of the politics of the last 25 years. I am rejoiced to see the violent reformers thus falling off from the cause, one after another. Lord Grey, Lord Lauderdale, Lord Erskine &. &. This is delightful!
We do not intend visiting Town this spring which I lament, only in as much as it prevents me the pleasure of seeing my particular friends, among which number I have very sincere pleasure in considering you my Dear Ricardo, so pray believe me to be yrs very sincerely
Mrs. Trower unites with me in kind regards to Mrs. R. and family.