Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAP. XVI.: Of civil Laws among People who know not the Use of Money. - Complete Works, vol. 1 The Spirit of Laws
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CHAP. XVI.: Of civil Laws among People who know not the Use of Money. - Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, Complete Works, vol. 1 The Spirit of Laws 
The Complete Works of M. de Montesquieu (London: T. Evans, 1777), 4 vols. Vol. 1.
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Of civil Laws among People who know not the Use of Money.
WHEN a people have not the use of money, they are seldom acquainted with any other injustice than that which arises from violence; and the weak, by uniting, defend themselves from its effects. They have nothing there but political regulations. But, where money is established, they are subject to that injustice which proceeds from craft; an injustice that may be exercised a thousand ways. Hence they are forced to have good civil laws, which spring up with the new practices of iniquity.
In countries where they have no specie the robber takes only bare moveables, which have no mutual resemblance. But, where they make use of money, the robber takes the signs, and these always resemble each other. In the former, nothing can be concealed, because the robber takes along with him the proofs of his conviction; but, in the latter, it is quite the contrary.