there are not more useful Members in a Commonwealth than Merchants. They knit Mankind together in a mutual Intercourse of good Offices, distribute the Gifts of Nature, find Work for the Poor, add Wealth to the Rich, and Magnificence to the Great.

–Joseph Addison, Spectator, no. 69, reflecting a general optimism around the rise of global trade through an emerging middle class that he attributes to an up-to-then invisible structure of mutual dependance through trade to properly distribute the wealth of nature: “Nature seems to have taken a particular Care to disseminate her Blessings among the different Regions of the World,with an Eye to this mutual Intercourse and Traffick among Mankind, that the Natives of the several Parts of the Globe might have a kind of Dependance upon one another, and be united together by their common Interest.”

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