Adam Smith's Simplified Wealth of Nations, Book 1, Chapter 11l: Rent, Digression -- Effect of demand on changes in silver prices

Chapter 11l, Digression: Rent - Effect of demand on changes in silver prices

163 Since the discovery of America, the market for its silver mines has been growing more extensive.
  1. 164 The European market has become more extensive.
  1. 165 America itself is a new market for its own silver.
  1. 166 The East Indies is another market for American silver.
167 When Europeans first began to trade to China and India until today, the value of the precious metals in those countries was much higher than in Europe. 168 If the mines which supplied India was as abundant as the mines which supplied Europe, precious metals and stones would naturally exchange for more food in India than in Europe. 168 To supply a very big global market, the amount of silver from the mines must be sufficient to: 169 The continual consumption of the precious metals is very sensible: Such metals require a very great annual supply. 170 The quantity of gold and silver imported and smuggled at Cadiz and Lisbon is £6 million sterling a year. 171 According to Nicolas Magens, the annual importation of the precious metals into Spain from 1748 to 1753 and into Portugal from 1747 to 1753 was: 172 Guillaume Thomas Raynal was the eloquent author of the Philosophical and Political History of the Commerce and Settlements of the Europeans in the two Indies.
Guillaume Thomas Raynal
Guillaume Thomas Raynal
173 Several other credible accounts agree with this amount. 174 The annual importation of the precious metals into Cadiz and Lisbon, is not equal to the total annual produce of the American mines. The American mines are not the only mines in the world. 175 There is much more brass and iron annually brought from the mine than gold and silver. 176 The price of all metals varies less from year to year than almost any rude produce of land. Words: 2351
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