The Elgar Dictionary of Economic Quotations
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The Elgar Dictionary of Economic Quotations

Edited by Charles Robert McCann

The Elgar Dictionary of Economic Quotations is a unique compendium of quotations on subjects of interest to economists and those who are generally intrigued by the social sciences. The coverage is not merely confined to economists, but includes quotes from essayists, jurists, philosophers, politicians, religious leaders, revolutionaries, scientists, and numerous other important figures who have contributed to our understanding of economic matters. Presented in a highly readable format, this impressive volume contains the thoughts and opinions of hundreds of individuals on issues relating to the economy, government, money, poverty, wealth, and a host of other important topics.
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This collection of quotations was initiated by a suggestion of Edward Elgar at the January 2001 meeting of the American Economic Association in New Orleans. To him I am profoundly grateful for the opportunity.

In putting together this compendium, extensive use was made of the resources of Hillman Library of the University of Pittsburgh, the Hunt Library of Carnegie-Mellon University, and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. In addition, the Darlington Library of the University of Pittsburgh made available an 1848 first American edition of John Stuart Mill's Principles of Political Economy, from which the quotations herein were selected. (Readers will undoubtedly notice differences between these passages and the material in the Ashley edition of the same work. One will also note the Americanized spellings of certain words.) The databases of the Making of America websites – at Cornell University and the University of Michigan – were invaluable sources of scarce and otherwise unavailable material, as was the Early English Books Online site. Where possible, these sources were checked against actual (hard) copies of the same works. Lastly, essays appearing in British periodicals of the Victorian period – especially the Edinburgh Review and Westminster Review – characteristically had no assigned author. These essays, which provide many of the more interesting and colorful quotations, are listed and the authors identified in the Wellesley Index of Victorian Periodicals (Toronto: University of Toronto Press), which proved to be an invaluable source of information.

Although virtually all the material presented here was researched by me, and so I alone am responsible for any disagreements readers may have as to inclusion and exclusion, I would like to thank Robert Dimand, Andrea Micocci, Mark Perlman, and Alex Viskavotoff for providing favorite quotes and even suggesting favorite writers whose work, I was to discover, simply could not have been excluded. While I could not take all their suggestions into consideration, I am nonetheless appreciative of the interest shown. I also wish to thank Dymphna Evans and Bob Pickens of Edward Elgar Publishing for handling the task of shepherding the manuscript through production.