316.: trower to ricardo1[Answered by 317] - David Ricardo, The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, Vol. 8 Letters 1819-June 1821 
The Works and Correspondence of David Ricardo, ed. Piero Sraffa with the Collaboration of M.H. Dobb (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2005). Vol. 8 Letters 1819-1821.
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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
[Answered by 317]
Unsted Wood—Godalming—[ca. 4 July 1819]
My Dear Ricardo
As the proceedings of Parliament are drawing to a close, and as the Dog days are fast approaching, I conclude you are beginning to think of getting out of Town.—No doubt, the new scenes in which you have been an actor have bound you still more closely to London; and indeed I should regret to have your interest devoted to any other object—You must be highly gratified with the success that has attended your efforts in the cause of truth and science, and to observe those doctrines, which used to be treated as dangerous and impracticable theories, now universally admitted, and acted upon, as undisputed axioms.
No—not yet undisputed, as my friend Sam Turner has taken up the cudgells against you, and has the boldness to avow opinions, in opposition to all the professors of the Science! Perhaps he hopes to establish a new School of Political Economy upon the ruins of that which he considers so erroneous! What say you, and what do you hear said of his Pamphlet. No doubt it is popular in the environs of the Bank—and I must do him the justice to say, that his defence of the Directors against Ministers is both spirited and successful.—As to the rest, he has not mended the cause of Bank Notes much by representing them in every case as having effects similar to the debasing the Coin!
I observe by the Papers, that Bullion is within 1/- of the Mint price! So, that the remedy is no sooner adopted than the recovery is effected, and without the slightest danger, or even inconvenience, to the terrified patient.
Well! who would have expected to see you a Member of a Committee for the furtherance of Mr. Owen’s Schemes!! I suppose you have accepted the appointment the more effectually to counteract his impolitic projects! Is it not a very confined, and a very unwise view of the poor, to consider the question of expence as the leading point to be attended to in their management? Can it be an improvement to convert the whole Country into a great Manufactory, even admitting it to be well regulated? Surely, with a view to the health, happiness and morality of the poor, the great object is not to collect them into large masses, (to which, under any system of management, there are innumerable objections,) but to break them down into small, unconnected societies—Not to collect them into great Towns, but to scatter them over the face of the Country in small villages, and detached cottages—So to assort them, that every Gentleman resident in the Country should have an opportunity of creating those sympathies, and exerting that influence among them, the feeling and the exercising of which cannot fail to produce the happiest effects. That the indefatiguable and humane exertions of a benevolent individual may have succeeded in introducing into a mass of people, who are his dependents, that happiness, morality and good conduct, which are not the natural growth of the congregated multitude, I dont mean to deny; but that he should therefore expect to be able to produce similar effects upon masses of people, not similarly circumstanced is I conceive, a conclusion not warranted by experience, nor justified by common sense. I observed the qualifications which you wisely imposed upon your being nominated on the Committee, and I am therefore prepared to find you deny a concurrence in Mr. Owens views, but, still, I would rather his chimeras had not received the sanction of your name even in appearance—I shall be glad to hear what you have to say on the subject. What do Geologists say of our friend Greenough’s Book? His style is peculiar, but his pages evince the extent of the information he has collected on the subject. Mrs. Trower begs to unite with me in kind remembrances to Mrs. Ricardo, and your family and I remain my Dear Ricardo
Yrs very sincerely—
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