to their own interest. We address ourselves, 
not to their humanity, but to their self-love
and never talk to them of our own necessities
but of their advantages. Nobody 
but a beggar chooses to depend chiefly upon 
the benevolence of his fellow-citizens. Even 
a beggar does not depend upon it entirely. 
The charity of well-disposed people, indeed, 
supplies him with the whole fund of his subsistence. 
But though this principle ultimately 
provides him with all the necessaries of 
life which he has occasion for, it neither does 
nor can provide him with them as he has occasion 
for them. The greater part of his occasional 
wants are supplied in the same manner 
as those of other people, by treaty, by barter
and by purchase. With the money which 
one man gives him he purchases food. The 
old clothes which another bestows upon him 
he exchanges for other clothes which suit him 
better, or for lodging, or for food, or for 
money, with which he can buy either food
clothes, or lodging, as he has occasion
As it is by treaty, by barter, and by purchase, 
that we obtain from one another the 
greater part of those mutual good offices which 
we stand in need of, so it is this same trucking 
disposition which originally gives occasion to 
the division of labour. In a tribe of hunters 
or shepherds, a particular person makes bows 
and arrows, for example, with more readiness 
and dexterity than any other. He frequently 
exchanges them for cattle or for venison, with 
his companions; and he finds at last that he 
can, in this manner, get more cattle and venison
than if he himself went to the field to 
catch them. From a regard to his own interest, 
therefore, the making of bows and 
arrows grows to be his chief business, and he 
becomes a sort of armourer. Another excels 
in making the frames and covers of their little 
huts or moveable houses. He is accustomed 
to be of use in this way to his neighbours
who reward him in the same manner with 
cattle and with venison, till at last he finds it 
his interest to dedicate himself entirely to this 
employment, and to become a sort of house-carpenter
In the same manner a third becomes 
a smith or a brazier; a fourth, a tanner 
or dresser of hides or skins, the principal 
part of the clothing of savages. And thus 
the certainty of being able to exchange all 
that surplus part of the produce of his own labour, 
which is over and above his own consumption, 
for such parts of the produce of 
other men's labour as he may have occasion 
for, encourages every man to apply himself to 
a particular occupation, and to cultivate and 
bring to perfection whatever talent of genius 
he may possess for that particular species of 
The difference of natural talents in different 
men, is, in reality, much less than we are 
aware of; and the very different genius which 
appears to distinguish men of different professions
when grown up to maturity, is not 
upon many occasions so much the cause, as 
the effect of the division of labour. The 
difference between the most dissimilar characters
between a philosopher and a common 
street porter, for example, seems to arise not 
so much from nature, as from habit, custom, 
and education. When they came into the 
world, and for the first six or eight years of 
their existence, they were, perhaps, very much 
alike, and neither their parents nor playfellows 
could perceive any remarkable difference
About that age, or soon after, they come to 
be employed in very different occupations
The difference of talents comes then to be 
taken notice of, and widens by degrees, till at 
last the vanity of the philosopher is willing to 
acknowledge scarce any resemblance. But 
without the disposition to truck, barter, and 
exchange, every man must have procured to 
himself every necessary and conveniency of 
life which he wanted. All must have had 
the same duties to perform, and the same 
work to do, and there could have been no 
such difference of employment as could alone 
give occasion to any great difference of talents
As it is this disposition which forms that 
difference of talents, so remarkable among 
men of different professions, so it is this same 
disposition which renders that difference useful. 
Many tribes of animals, acknowledged 
to be all of the same species, derive from nature 
a much more remarkable distinction of 
genius, than what, antecedent to custom and 
education, appears to take place among men
By nature a philosopher is not in genius and 
disposition half so different from a street porter, 
as a mastiff is from a grey-hound, or a 
grey-hound from a spaniel, or this last from a 
shepherd's dog. Those different tribes of animals
however, though all of the same species
are of scarce any use to one another. The 
strength of the mastiff is not in the least supported 
either by the swiftness of the grey-hound
or by the sagacity of the spaniel, or by 
the docility of the shepherd's dog. The effects 
of those different geniuses and talents, for 
want of the power or disposition to barter and 
exchange, cannot be brought into a common 
stock, and do not in the least contribute to the 
better accommodation and conveniency of the 
species. Each animal is still obliged to support 
and defend itself, separately and independently
and derives no sort of advantage 
from that variety of talents with which nature 
has distinguished its fellows. Among men
on the contrary, the most dissimilar geniuses 
are of use to one another; the different produces 
of their respective talents, by the general 
disposition to truck, barter, and exchange
being brought, as it were, into a common 
stock, where every man may purchase whatever 
part of the produce of other men's talents 
he has occasion for.