Avis au Roi sur la libre circulation des grains, et la reduction naturelle des prix, dans les annees de cherte.
A Grenoble, et se vend a Bruges, chez J. van Praet 1769. [IV],106p. Contemp. calf, gilt back with red label, gilt borders on both sides, gilt arms of Bruges to the centre of both boards with the letters S[enatus] P[opulus]Q[ue] B[rugensis] ('the Senate and the People of Bruges'), red edges. A few tiny wormholes in margins, far from printed surface. First edition? This is a much praised apology for the free trade in grain and a 'masterly exposition of the Physiocratic doctrine'. Free trade in grain in France was established by the Royal Edict of July 1764. However the high prices of provisions caused a growing demand for protection. Alarmed by these attempts to abolish free trade the parliament of Dauphine published this Avis, dated 26 April 1769 and according to Weulersse actually written by Bigot de Sainte-Croix. The Avis is followed by several relating pieces: the Declaration du Roi portant permission de faire circuler les grains, farines & legumes dans toute l'etendue du Royaume of 25 May 1763, the Edit du Roi concernant la liberte de la sortie & de l'entree des grains dans le Royaume of July 1764, the Lettres patentes du Roi, qui fixent les droits de sortie & d'entree sur les grains of 7 November 1764, the Reponse du Roi du 18 decembre 1768 ... sur les representations faites d'apres l'arrete de l'Assemblee du 18 Novembre, and letters to the controller general from the presidents of the parliament of Grenoble (13 June 1768) and of Provence (8 July 1768). There was another edition published the same year, usually considered the first, though without evidence. That edition, of which two slightly different issues seem to exist, has in its title the name Dauphine and was published without name of place or printer. The additional pieces in that edition are of a different nature: two sentences (of 6 July 1763 and 22 August 1764) of the procureur general at the Breton parliament Caradeuc de La Chalotais urging the application of the Royal edicts permitting the free trade in grain 'in the whole kingdom', and three smaller pieces of 1766 concerning an attempt to restore protection and its nullification by the Conseil d'Etat. Einaudi lists our edition before the other, though no explicit priority is assigned. Can it be that by the present edition the Avis 'was made public' and 'made such a strong impression that the Paris parliament fixed its disappearance', as Weulersse states? He then quotes Bachaumont: 'This work soon became excessively rare, because the system it proposes to His Majesty is completely opposed to that what the parliaments of Paris and Rouen have written on this matter, and that this first body did not find it good that a publication so contrary to their own way of thinking was spread under their eyes'. It may then have been reprinted, without a publisher's name and with documents supporting the case of the Physiocrats? Of that edition two issues are known and at least one of these clearly appeared after the suppression of the book by the parliament, since it has a note that refers to it. A folding table present in the other edition was not issued with our edition.
¶ Einaudi 2246 (and 2247 for the other edition). Masui I,p.397 (this edition only). This edition not in Kress (S.4557 for the other edition), no edition in Goldsmiths' or INED. Weulersse p.200.
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