The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd


  • Murray N. Rothbard
Reference work entry


The term, meaning ‘the science of exchanges’, was proposed as a replacement for the name ‘political economy’ by the Rev. Richard Whately in his 1831 Drummond Lectures at Oxford on political economy (Whately 1831). As the leader of the group of embattled religious and economic liberals at Oriel College, Oxford, during the 1820s, Whately, a distinguished logician, had become tutor and lifelong friend of the economist Nassau W. Senior. In his Drummond Lectures, Whately was concerned to refute the dominant Oxford view that political economy, being concerned with wealth, was materialistic and opposed to Christianity. In focusing on exchanges, Whately denounced Adam Smith’s definition of the scope of political economy as the science of wealth.


Catallactics Condillac, E. B. de Crusoe economics Exchange Macleod, H. D. Mises, L. E. von Perry, A. L. Political economy Praxeology Property Schumpeter, J. A. Smith, A. Subjective theory of value Wealth 

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© Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Murray N. Rothbard
    • 1
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