horses, and the maintenance of horses, of land 
carriage consequently, or of the greater part 
of the inland commerce of the country
By regulating the money price of all the 
other parts of the rude produce of land, it regulates 
that of the materials of almost all manufactures
by regulating the money price of 
labour, it regulates that of manufacturing art 
and industry; and by regulating both, it regulates 
that of the complete manufacture. 
The money price of labour, and of every thing 
that is the produce, either of land or labour, 
must necessarily either rise or fall in proportion 
to the money price of corn
Though in consequence of the bounty
therefore, the farmer should be enabled to sell 
his corn for 4s. the bushel, instead of 3s 6d. 
and to pay his landlord a money rent proportionable 
to this rise in the money price of his 
produce; yet if, in consequence of this rise 
in the price of corn, 4s. will purchase no more 
home made goods of any other kind than 3s. 
6d. would have done before, neither the circumstances 
of the farmer, nor those of the 
landlord, will be much mended by this 
change. The farmer will not be able to cultivate 
much better; the landlord will not be able 
to live much better. In the purchase of foreign 
commodities, this enhancement in the 
price of corn may give them some little advantage. 
In that of home made commodities
it can give them none at all. And almost the 
whole expense of the farmer, and the far 
greater part even of that of the landlord, is in 
home made commodities
That degradation in the value of silver
which is the effect of the fertility of the mines, 
and which operates equally, or very nearly 
equally, through the greater part of the commercial 
world, is a matter of very little consequence 
to any particular country. The consequent 
rise of all money prices, though it 
does not make those who receive them really 
richer, does not make them really poorer. A 
service of plate becomes really cheaper, and 
every thing else remains precisely of the same 
real value as before. 
But that degradation in the value of silver
which, being the effect either of the peculiar 
situation or of the political institutions of a 
particular country, takes place only in that 
country, is a matter of very great consequence
which, far from tending to make any body 
really richer, tends to make every body really 
poorer. The rise in the money price of all 
commodities, which is in this case peculiar to 
that country, tends to discourage more or less 
every sort of industry which is carried on within 
it, and to enable foreign nations, by furnishing 
almost all sorts of goods for a smaller 
quantity of silver than its own workmen can 
afford to do, to undersell them, not only in 
the foreign, but even in the home market
It is the peculiar situation of Spain and 
Portugal, as proprietors of the mines, to be 
the distributers of gold and silver to all the 
other countries of Europe. Those metals 
ought naturally, therefore, to be somewhat 
cheaper in Spain and Portugal than in any 
other part of Europe. The difference, however, 
should be no more than the amount of 
the freight and insurance; and, on account of 
the great value and small bulk of those metals
their freight is no great matter, and their insurance 
is the same as that of any other goods 
of equal value. Spain and Portugal, therefore, 
could suffer very little from their peculiar 
situation, if they did not aggravate its disadvantages 
by their political institutions
Spain by taxing, and Portugal by prohibiting
the exportation of gold and silver, load 
that exportation with the expense of smuggling, 
and raise the value of those metals in 
other countries so much more above what it is 
in their own, by the whole amount of this expense. 
When you dam up a stream of water
as soon as the dam is full, as much water 
must run over the dam-head as if there was 
no dam at all. The prohibition of exportation 
cannot detain a greater quantity of gold 
and silver in Spain and Portugal, than what 
they can afford to employ, than what the annual 
produce of their land and labour will allow 
them to employ, in coin, plate, gilding
and other ornaments of gold and silver. When 
they have got this quantity, the dam is full
and the whole stream which flows in afterwards 
must run over. The annual exportation 
of gold and silver from Spain and Portugal
accordingly, is, by all accounts, notwithstanding 
these restraints, very near equal to 
the whole annual importation. As the water
however, must always be deeper behind the 
dam-head than before it, so the quantity of gold 
and silver which these restraints detain in Spain 
and Portugal, must, in proportion to the annual 
produce of their land and labour, be greater 
than what is to be found in other countries
The higher and stronger the dam-head, the 
greater must be the difference in the depth of 
water behind and before it. The higher the tax
the higher the penalties with which the prohibition 
is guarded, the more vigilant and severe 
the police which looks after the execution of 
the law, the greater must be the difference in 
the proportion of gold and silver to the annual 
produce of the land and labour of Spain 
and Portugal, and to that of other countries
It is said, accordingly, to be very considerable
and that you frequently find there a profusion 
of plate in houses, where there is nothing else 
which would in other countries be thought 
suitable or correspondent to this sort of magnificence. 
The cheapness of gold and silver
or, what is the same thing, the dearness of all 
commodities, which is the necessary effect of 
this redundancy of the precious metals, discourages 
both the agriculture and manufactures 
of Spain and Portugal, and enables foreign 
nations to supply them with many sorts