finer fruits cannot be brought to perfection 
but by the assistance of a wall. Their price
therefore, in such countries, must be sufficient 
to pay the expense of building and maintaining 
what they cannot be had without. The 
fruit-wall frequently surrounds the kitchen 
garden, which thus enjoys the benefit of an inclosure 
which its own produce could seldom 
pay for. 
That the vineyard, when properly planted 
and brought to perfection, was the most valuable 
part of the farm, seems to have been an 
undoubted maxim in the ancient agriculture
as it is in the modern, through all the wine 
countries. But whether it was advantageous 
to plant a new vineyard, was a matter of dispute 
among the ancient Italian husbandmen, 
as we learn from Columella. He decides, 
like a true lover of all curious cultivation, in 
favour of the vineyard; and endeavours to 
shew, by a comparison of the profit and expense, 
that it was a most advantageous improvement
Such comparisons, however, between 
the profit and expense of new projects 
are commonly very fallacious; and in nothing 
more so than in agriculture. Had the gain 
actually made by such plantations been commonly 
as great as he imagined it might have 
been, there could have been no dispute about 
it. The same point is frequently at this day 
a matter of controversy in the wine countries
Their writers on agriculture, indeed, the lovers 
and promoters of high cultivation, seem 
generally disposed to decide with Columella 
in favour of the vineyard. In France, the 
anxiety of the proprietors of the old vineyards 
to prevent the planting of any new ones, seems 
to favour their opinion, and to indicate a consciousness 
in those who must have the experience
that this species of cultivation is at present 
in that country more profitable than any 
other. It seems, at the same time, however, 
to indicate another opinion, that this superior 
profit can last no longer than the laws which 
at present restrain the free cultivation of the 
vine. In 1731, they obtained an order of 
council, prohibiting both the planting of new 
vineyards, and the renewal of these old ones, 
of which the cultivation had been interrupted 
for two years, without a particular permission 
from the king, to be granted only in consequence 
of an information from the intendant 
of the province, certifying that he had examined 
the land, and that it was incapable of 
any other culture. The pretence of this order 
was the scarcity of corn and pasture, and 
the superabundance of wine. But had this 
superabundance been real, it would, without 
any order of council, have effectually prevented 
the plantation of new vineyards, by reducing 
the profits of this species of cultivation 
below their natural proportion to those of corn 
and pasture. With regard to the supposed 
scarcity of corn occasioned by the multiplication 
of vineyards, corn is nowhere in France 
more carefully cultivated than in the wine 
provinces, where the land is fit for producing 
it: as in Burgundy, Guienne, and the Upper 
Languedoc. The numerous hands employed 
in the one species of cultivation necessarily 
encourage the other, by affording a ready market 
for its produce. To diminish the number 
of those who are capable of paying it, is surely 
a most unpromising expedient for encouraging 
the cultivation of corn. It is like the 
policy which would promote agriculture, by 
discouraging manufactures
The rent and profit of those productions
therefore, which require either a greater original 
expense of improvement in order to fit the 
land for them, or a greater annual expense of 
cultivation, though often much superior to 
those of corn and pasture, yet when they do 
no more than compensate such extraordinary 
expense, are in reality regulated by the rent 
and profit of those common crops
It sometimes happens, indeed, that the quantity 
of land which can be fitted for some particular 
produce, is too small to supply the effectual 
demand. The whole produce can be 
disposed of to those who are willing to give 
somewhat more than what is sufficient to pay 
the whole rent, wages, and profit, necessary 
for raising and bringing it to market, according 
to their natural rates, or according to the 
rates at which they are paid in the greater 
part of other cultivated land. The surplus 
part of the price which remains after defraying 
the whole expense of improvement and 
cultivation, may commonly, in this case, and 
in this case only, bear no regular proportion 
to the like surplus in corn or pasture, but may 
exceed it in almost any degree; and the greater 
part of this excess naturally goes to the 
rent of the landlord
The usual and natural proportion, for example, 
between the rent and profit of wine, and 
those of corn and pasture, must be understood 
to take place only with regard to those vineyards 
which produce nothing but good common 
wine, such as can be raised almost anywhere, 
upon any light, gravelly, or sandy soil, and 
which has nothing to recommend it but its 
strength and wholesomeness. It is with such 
vineyards only, that the common land of the 
country can be brought into competition; for 
with those of a peculiar quality it is evident 
that it cannot. 
The vine is more affected by the difference 
of soils than any other fruit-tree. From some 
it derives a flavour which no culture or management 
can equal, it is supposed, upon any 
other. This flavour, real or imaginary, is 
sometimes peculiar to the produce of a few 
vineyards; sometimes it extends through 
the greater part of a small district, and sometimes 
through a considerable part of a large province. 
The whole quantity of such wines 
that is brought to market falls short of the effectual 
demand, or the demand of those who