Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAP. III.: That the wants of the People in the South are different from those of the North. - Complete Works, vol. 2 The Spirit of Laws
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
CHAP. III.: That the wants of the People in the South are different from those of the North. - Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, Complete Works, vol. 2 The Spirit of Laws 
The Complete Works of M. de Montesquieu (London: T. Evans, 1777), 4 vols. Vol. 2.
About Liberty Fund:
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
That the wants of the People in the South are different from those of the North.
In Europe, there is a kind of balance between the southern and northern nations. The first have every convenience of life, and few of its wants: the last have many wants, and few conveniencies. To one, nature has given much, and demands but little; to the other, she has given but little, and demands a great deal. The equilibrium is maintained by the laziness of the southern nations, and by the industry and activity which she has given to those in the north. The latter are obliged to undergo excessive labour, without which, they would want every thing, and degenerate into barbarians. This has naturalized slavery to the people of the south: as they can easily dispense with riches, they can more easily dispense with liberty. But the people of the north have need of liberty, for this can best procure them the means of satisfying all those wants which they have received from nature. The people of the north, then, are in a forced state, if they are not either free or barbarians. Almost all the people of the south are, in some measure, in a state of violence, if they are not slaves.