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Second, Stewart wrote about, and quoted some sentences from a 1755 manuscript by Smith (EPS, p. 29 In this document Smith allegedly asserted the originality of his opinions, ‘without any considerable variation’ (EPS, p. 322) from a lecture some six years earlier, that is, back to his days at Edinburgh in 1749. According to Stewart, in this manuscript ‘many of the most important opinions in The Wealth of Nations are there detailed’ (EPS, p. 322). 30 28 29 30 Luigi Cossa (1831–96) considered that ‘this writer [Skarz˙yn´ski] is too ready to depreciate Adam Smith in comparison with the Physiocrats’ (1880, p.

Buckle, 1970 [1861], p. 351)33 Skar˙zyn´ski simply detected the error that the TMS, based on sympathy, and the WN, based on self-interest, together comprise a complete, independent and almost additive picture of human nature. 2 Some early reactions A few years after Skar˙zyn´ski, an important English intellectual historian, Sir Leslie Stephen (1832–1904), published his influential History of English Thought in the Eighteenth Century (1876). In this, he gibes at Buckle’s fondness for Smith, and reacts against his account, stating that the TMS is ‘apt to disappoint us by a certain superficiality’ (Stephen, 1991 [1876], vol.

Thoemmes Press has recently republished the former and the latter (1998), with an introduction by Hiroshi Mizuta. Nevertheless, as Tribe (1988, p. 148) persuasively suggests, the WN’s influence during the last decade of the eighteenth century cannot be overstated, despite there having been a change in economic discourse. However, in my view, if the transition to a Nationalökonomie in Germany was not determined by the reception of the WN, it was certainly influenced by it through a debate, amongst other things, on the nature of homo œconomicus and its implications for political economy.

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