Online Library of Liberty

A collection of scholarly works about individual liberty and free markets. A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.

Advanced Search

Hume, Smith, and Ferguson: Wealth, Commerce, and Corruption

This is a Reading List based upon a Liberty Fund Conference on “Wealth, Commerce, and Corruption in Hume, Smith, and Ferguson.”

Wealth, Commerce, and Corruption in Hume, Smith, and Ferguson

Guide to the Readings

Editions used:

See also in the Online Library of Liberty:

For additional reading see:

Session I: Hume on Commercial Societies

David Hume, Essays Moral, Political, Literary, edited and with a Foreword, Notes, and Glossary by Eugene F. Miller, with an appendix of variant readings from the 1889 edition by T.H. Green and T.H. Grose, revised edition (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund 1987).

Session II: Smith on Nature and Custom

Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, ed. D.D. Raphael and A.L. Macfie, vol. I of the Glasgow Edition of the Works and Correspondence of Adam Smith (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1982).

  • Part IV: “Of the Effect of Utility Upon the Sentiment of Approbation”
  • Part V: “Of the Influence of Custom and Fashion upon the Sentiments of Moral Approbation and Disapprobation”

Session III: Ferguson on Nature, Happiness, and National Greatness

Adam Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society, 5th ed. (London: T. Cadell, 1782).

Session IV: Ferguson on Property, Law, and Spontaneous Order

Adam Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society, 5th ed. (London: T. Cadell, 1782).

Session V: Ferguson on Progress

Adam Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society, 5th ed. (London: T. Cadell, 1782).

Session VI: Ferguson on Corruption

Adam Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society, 5th ed. (London: T. Cadell, 1782).

Last modified April 13, 2016