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[28] free between man and man, and between nation and
chap. I.} 1763
nation; for commerce is neither a captive to be ransomed, nor an infant to be held in leading-strings. Thus he followed the teachings of nature, living as one born not for himself, but for the service of truth and the welfare of mankind.1

In those days the people toiled and suffered, with scarce a hope of a better futurity even for their posterity. In life Turgot employed his powers and his fortune as a trust, to relieve the sorrows of the poor; but, under the system of uncontrolled individual freedom, the laborer, from the pressure of competition, might underbid his fellow laborer till his wages should be reduced to a bare support.2 Thus the skeptical philosopher, the erudite magistrate, the philanthropic founder of the science of political economy, proposed what they could for human progress. From the discipleship of Calvin, from the republic of Geneva, from the abodes of poverty, there sprung up a writer, through whom the ‘ignorant poor’ breathed out their wrongs, and a new class gained a voice in the world of published thought. With Jean Jacques Rousseau truth was no more to employ the discreet insinuations of academicians; nor seek a hearing by the felicities of wit; nor compromise itself by exchanging flattery for the favor of the great; nor appeal to the interests of the industrial classes. Full of weaknesses and jealousies, shallow and inconsiderate, betrayed by poverty into shameful deeds, yet driven by remorse to make atonement for


Secta fuit servare modum, finemque tenere,
Naturainque sequi, patriaque impendere vitam;
Non sibi, sed toti genitum se credere mundo.
Motto of Condorcet: Vie de Turgot.

2 Turgot sur la Formation et la Distribution des Richesses. § VI. Oenvres i. 10.

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