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PLAN OF LECTURES ON POLITICAL ECONOMY, For Winter 1800-1801. - Dugald Stewart, Lectures on Political Economy, vol. 1 
Lectures on Political Economy. Now first published. Vol. I. To which is Prefixed, Part Third of the Outlines of Moral Philosophy, edited by Sir William Hamilton (Edinburgh, Thomas Constable, 1855).
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PLAN OF LECTURES ON POLITICAL ECONOMY,
1.—Of National Habits with respect to Food.
2.—Of Agriculture, Manufactures, and Population, considered in relation to each other.—State of the Actual Cultivators of the Soil;—Great and Small Farms;—Enclosures;—Distribution of Landed Property;—Agrarian policy of the Romans and of other ancient Nations;—Effects with respect to Population;—Essential Distinction between their Condition and ours, in consequence of the Abolition of Domestic Slavery, and other causes; and absurdity of reasoning from their institutions, as applicable to the present State of Society.—Law of Entails.
Influence of Manufactures in encouraging Agriculture among Nations which exclude the institution of Domestic Slavery.—Subordination of Manufactures to Agriculture.—Errors of some modern Statesmen on this subject.—Discouragements which still exist to the Progress of Agriculture.
Digression concerning the effects of some particular forms of Manufacturing Industry, lately introduced into this Country.—Cotton Mills, &c.—General question concerning the tendency of Mechanical contrivances for abridging labour, to increase or to diminish the Population of a Country.
How far the Number of a people, compared with the extent of their Territory, may be regarded as a test of National Prosperity.—Mischievous consequences of encouraging Population without a corresponding increase in the funds necessary to support it. Question resumed concerning the Subordination of Manufactures to Agriculture.—Application of these reasonings to the present state of Great Britain.—Objection, which has been stated to these liberal views of Political Economy, from their supposed tendency to produce or to accelerate the mischiefs of an Excessive Population.—Critical Examination of a late Essay on the Principle of Population, as it affects the Future Improvement of Society.—[London, 1798, by Malthus.]
Of the Means which have been employed to ascertain the State of Population in particular instances.—Number of Houses;—Quantity of Consumption in the article of Food;—Register of Births, Deaths, and Marriages.
Miscellaneous observations and inquiries, chiefly relating to the question concerning the progressive or declining Population of Great Britain;—Population of France.
Population of China.—Application of this extreme case, to illustrate the principles formerly stated concerning the evils of an excessive Population, and the danger of proposing Population as an ultimate object of policy, instead of advancing it through the medium of National Wealth.
Of National Wealth.
Of the Poor.
Of Corrective Police.
Of Preventive Police.
The present publication, then, of the Lectures on Political Economy, as has been stated above, is taken from Mr. Stewart’s older manuscripts, most of which are still extant. As the work, however, passed through the press, various deficiencies were discovered, which had not been detected on a cursory perusal of the documents,—deficiencies which, indeed, only became apparent by a careful comparison of the different Plans or Tables of Contents of the Lectures, with two sets of Notes taken in 1809, the last year in which the Course was delivered, and which had been kindly sent to me, in the hope of their proving useful in the arrangement of the Lectures. Of these copies of Notes, the one was the joint work of Mr. James Bridges, W.S., and of the late Mr. John Dow, W.S.; the other was by the late Mr. James Bonar, Solicitor of Excise, Edinburgh, and obligingly communicated to me by his son, through Mr. Constable. The former Notes, as Mr. Bridges informs me, were taken in short-hand, and afterwards written out; and, from a comparison of them with Mr. Stewart’s manuscripts, they have been found remarkably copious and accurate, frequently corresponding word for word with the original. The latter appear to have been written without the aid of shorthand, as they are not so comprehensive and articulate as the former; while sundry quotations, particularly in the earlier portions of the Course, have been copied verbatim from the works of their respective authors.
As the deficiencies, in consequence of the destruction of the original manuscripts, became fully manifest, it was necessary to choose between the alternatives;—either to print only what remained of Mr. Stewart’s autograph, or to supply the blanks from this or that copy of the Notes. The latter alternative was deemed preferable; inasmuch as thus is fulfilled the Author’s plan as followed in his final Course, while there is every reason to believe, that where the Lectures are deficient, the Notes, especially those of Mr. Bridges, may be safely relied on, as fully and faithfully recording the Author’s opinions in the language of his prelections.* Of these Notes, therefore, I have availed myself largely, particularly in the Chapters on Labour, on Money, and on Trade; while the whole of what is advanced on the Maintenance of the Poor, and on Education, is supplied from the same source. Although, however, the Notes of Mr. Bridges are very complete, in so far as Mr. Stewart’s own remarks and speculations are concerned, the numerous citations adduced by him are, for the most part, left to be inserted. In this respect, I have found the Notes of Mr. Bonar of great utility, in pointing out a quotation, and in marking its length, so that they have materially assisted in supplying the chief deficiency in those of Mr. Bridges. And here it is to be observed, that the commencement and termination of the passages supplied from the Note-books of Mr. Stewart’s pupils, are articulately marked as interpolations; and, when not otherwise stated, they are from the transcript of Mr. Bridges. The quotations have, however, in general, been filled up from the original works.
To Mr. Bridges and to Mr. Bonar, I have, therefore, to offer my best thanks for the use of these valuable Note-books. But I have, likewise, to express my acknowledgments to Mr. James Gibson Craig, for his kindness in communicating to me a copy of Notes in his possession, taken of Mr. Stewart’s Course of Political Economy, by the late Lord Jeffrey in 1802. I should have gladly availed myself of these, had not the writing been found so extremely difficult to decipher, and the Notes themselves been of so early a date.
Nor can I conclude this Advertisement without gratefully thanking my friend and colleague, Professor More, for the valuable, and often laborious, assistance he has been always kindly ready to afford me, from the treasures of his library; while his extensive acquaintance with books and the literature of Political Economy, has enabled him to discover for me many of the scarce pamphlets adduced, lying perdue in the public collections.
It should finally be observed, that, here as elsewhere, the footnotes of the Author are referred to by numerals, those of the Editor, by asterisk, obelus, &c. To the latter, likewise, in this work, belongs all that is inclosed within square brackets, whether in text or annotation; and, in general, the distribution of the Lectures into Book, Chapter, Section, &c., to say nothing of the Running Titles. In the Table of Contents, however, the distinction of square brackets has been omitted, as in the present volumes the Editor is for that Table exclusively responsible.
[* ] [Much in relation to this subject will be found in the Dissertation, Part III.,—probably transferred from these Lectures.]
[* ] Mr. Bridges, in the letter to me which accompanied the five volumes of his Notes, says:—“Mr. Stewart was jealous at the time of our labours, and stated to Mr. Dow and myself, that he would take it for granted we would not publish our notes. But presuming that you have the sanction of his family for your work, I not only do not feel myself to be acting contrary to this pledge, but rather deem myself to be discharging a duty to his memory and to the public, in thus communicating these volumes to you.”