SMITH ADAM (1723-1790). Économiste et philosophe écossais.

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SMITH ADAM (1723-1790). Économiste et philosophe écossais.
Signed autograph letter, signed « Adam Smith », Glasgow 3 December 1759, to “My Lord” [John Petty, Earl of SHELBURNE]; 3 pages in-4 format (slight splitting to folds); in English. Interesting letter from the exchange rate of funds, and on the education of his young boarder Thomas Fitzmaurice. John Petty, Irish aristocrat, fi rst Earl of SHELBURNE (1706-1761), Member of Parliament, had entrusted his youngest son, Thomas FITZMAURICE (1742-1793), then student, to Adam Smith. The economist was a professor at the University of Glasgow. Smith explains how he has taken advantage of exchange rate diff erences, and thanks his correspondent for sending funds: “Your Lordship has remitted the money in the manner that is most advantageous to me. As the ballance of Exchange is almost always against Glasgow & in favour of London all London bills commonly sell above Par, & I this day received ½ per cent advanced price for the two draughts you sent me. I should abuse your Lordships Generosity very grossly if I took advantage of what you are so good as to put in my Power or did not declare that I think the sum you have remitted me full compensation for all the trouble I have been at with Mr. Fitzmaurice. That trouble, indeed, is very little. I have never known anybody more easily governed, or who more readily adopted any advice when the propriety of it is fairly explained to him…” Smith then goes on to recount an anecdote illustrating his son’s impeccable behavior: “I cannot give your Lordship a stronger instance how much he takes it a point of honour to observe the most frivolous parts of his duty as a student with exact regularity. He gives good application and has a very great ambition to distinguish himself as a man of Learning. He seems to have a particular turn for and delight in Mechanics and Mathematics which make the principal part of his business this year continuing, however, all his last year’s studies except Logic. What he is most defect
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