A Work That Influenced John Adams and Other American Founding Fathers [Burgh, James (1714-1775)]. Political Disquisitions: Or, An Enquiry into Public Errors, Defects, and Abuses. Illustrated By, And Established upon Facts and Remarks Extracted from a Variety of Authors, Ancient and Modern. Calculated To Draw the Timely Attention of Government and People to a Due Consideration of the Necessity, And the Means, Of Reforming Those Errors, Defects, And Abuses; Of Restoring the Constitution, And Saving the State. London: Printed for E. and C. Dilly, 1774-1775. Three volumes. xxiii, , 486; vii, , 477; [viii], 460,  pp. Complete set. Volume III includes two-page publisher catalogue. Octavo (8-1/4" x 5-3/4"). Recent period-style calf, blind rules to boards, raised bands and lettering pieces and gilt-stamped volume numbers to spines, endpapers renewed. Moderate toning, slightly heavier in places, occasional light foxing. A handsome set. $3,500. * First Edition. Burgh was notable reformer of "public errors, defects, and abuses." Notable for its extensive use of statistics, his Political Disquisitions offers arguments in favor of several then-radical ideas, such as free speech and universal (male) suffrage. The first two volumes of this work were published in 1774, the third in 1775. Another edition was published in Philadelphia in 1775. It was a profound influence on the American Founding Fathers, John Adams especially, who said the book "ought to be in the hands of every American who has learned to read" (cited in Wood). Jefferson owned a copy of the American edition. Wood, The Creation of the American Republic 165. Sowerby, Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson 2720. English Short-Title Catalogue T69213.
Book number 67977