Cantillon, Richard

Cantillon (2)Richard Cantillon


Richard Cantillon was an Irish international banker. His work Essal sur la nature du commerce en general was published in 1755. Cantillan was one of the first writers to see the fault in the mercantilists’ contention that the wealth of a country was determined by the amount of gold or money it had. Cantillon argued that money can only be a measure of wealth while wealth itself is actually derived from production. He believed that only agriculture yielded a surplus, and to this extent he anticipated the Physiocrats. His view of ‘pure rent,’ and the circulation of wealth may also have influenced the Physiocrats.