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The Idea of Europe

Catriona Seth
Rotraud von Kulessa

64. Towards the Balance of Powers

Texte intégral

1In 1734, Jean-François Melon (1675–1738),i who was born in Tulle, published his Essai Politique sur le Commerce (Political Essay on Commerce) defending mercantilism and sketching out ideas the physiocrats later developed. He points out the true economic value of a balance of powers in Europe.

2The spirit of Peace has finally shone on our Europe. For as long as it reigns, a fair balance will ever stop a Power from rising sufficiently through its conquests to be feared; and should any momentary interests trouble this happy harmony, the Victor will no longer be able to hope to extend his borders: all must unite to stop his dangerous progress and a Nation will no longer be able to grow except through the wisdom of its internal government.

3Jean-François Melon, A Political Essay on Commerce (1734).

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