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The World
An Economics Exhibit

The World's Wealth
  • The Economic Consequences of the Peace (by )
  • Capital : A Critique of Political Econom... (by )
  • Principles of Economics : Volume 1 (by )
  • Sumerian Tablets from Umma in the John R... (by )
  • Dealing with Spatial Dimensions of Inequ... (by )
  • Oeconomicus (by )
  • Life of Adam Smith (by )
  • The Wealth of Nations (by )
  • Records from Erech, Time of Nabonidus (5... (by )
  • The Industrial Revolution (by )
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The World's Wealth:  An Economics Exhibit

This virtual exhibit offers significant insight into the money, economic theories and political influence on economies.  The historical economic discoveries and records of common men and great economists alike have been preserved in a treasure trove of works and documents in the World’s Wealth Exhibit.  A focused exploration into historical documents within our Collection will give readers a sound foundation for understanding of government, society and finance processes.

Ancient Economics
Ancient Economics
According to the World Heritage Encyclopedia, the discipline of Economics "focuses on the behavior and interactions of economic agents and how economies work."  Traditionally, the study of economics is the study of the way individuals and societies best use limited resources to satisfy their wants and needs both at the macro and micro levels  (“Economics,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Throughout history, mankind has approached the processes that govern the production, distribution and consumption of resources with a variety of methods...some more in agreement with our current perception of morality than others.

Records from Erech, Time of Nabonidus (555-538 B.C.), Volume 6 by Raymond P. Dougherty documents the experiences of agricultural slaves in Babylon during the reign of the last Neo-Babylonian king, Nabonidus.  They lived  long, cruel days under the scorching sun; ploughing, sowing, reaping and threshing (
Records from Erech, Time of Nabonidus (555-538 B.C.), Volume 6, Raymond Philip Dougherty).  In addition, they were sold.  The book, Sumerian Tablets from Umma in the John Rylands Library, Manchester, describes when a sale occurred, a receipt of purchase would be drawn up on a small clay tablet for your former owner (The Sumerian Tablets from Umma, Charles Lees Bedale).  This clay receipt would have represented some of the first records of monetary exchange in the history of mankind (“Economics,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).

The most treasured discoveries made by the greatest minds in the history of economic thought are rendered somewhat lifeless beside a record of the daily suffering endured by a common slave hand in Babylon (Records from Erech, Time of Nabonidus (555-538 B.C.), Volume 6, Raymond Philip Dougherty).  It is this connection to documents and records, detailing humanity’s cruelty in some cases, which makes so relevant the importance of fair economic law and practice today.

Immoral economic practices are often a product of trying to address the problem of resource scarcity in a society (“Economics,” World Heritage Encyclopedia). The problem of scarcity is addressed at length by 18th-century Scottish economist and philosopher Adam Smith, whose most famous work, The Wealth of Nations, is often referred to as the bible of capitalism ("Adam Smith," World Heritage Encyclopedia).

Smith believed that when an individual pursues his or her self-interest, they indirectly promote the good of society and solve many of the problems associated with scarcity (The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith).  Smith contended that self-interested competition in the free market would tend to benefit society as a whole by keeping prices low, while still building in an incentive for a wide variety of goods and services ("Adam Smith," World Heritage Encyclopedia).

Before Smith wrote the book, world economic theory measured a country’s wealth by its store of gold, silver and other precious metals. Smith argued that a nation’s wealth should not be judged thus but rather by the total of its production and commerce - what we know today as gross domestic product (The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith).

It took Smith nine long years to write the book, which is believed to be the first work dedicated to the study of political economics ("The Wealth of Nations" World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Life of Adam Smith describes Smith was on his deathbed, regretting that he hadn’t accomplished more (Life of Adam Smith, John Rae).   Even so, his philosophies and contributions to economic thought have often been credited, such as in The Industrial Revolution by Charles Austin Beard, for forging the path to prosperity that characterized the western world in the 19th-Century.
Alfred Marshall, a British economist born in 1842, learned from many of Smith’s discoveries and yet disagreed with Smith on several points. Specifically he argued that man should be equally as important as money and that there must be an emphasis on human welfare, instead of just wealth.  Marshall saw that the duty of economics was to improve material conditions, but believed that such improvement would only occur in partnership with social and political forces (“Alfred Marshall,” World Heritage Encyclopedia).

Marshall’s greatest success was an economic text called The Principles of Economics, Volume 1.  This work sought to reconcile the classical and modern theories of value to create a decisive and comprehensive tool for economic instruction ("The Principles of Economics," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Much of the success of Marshall’s teaching and The Principles of Economics book was derived from his effective use of diagrams such as his supply and demand graph (The Principles of Economics, Alfred Marshall).  His models and graphs gave later economists more effective means from which to learn and teach and are still utilized in educational settings today.  Perhaps more importantly, Marshall’s brief references to the social and cultural relations in the industrial districts of England were used as a starting point for late twentieth century work in economic geography ("Alfred Marshall," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Another book in our collection titled, Dealing with Spatial Dimensions of Inequality in Indonesia: Towards a Social Accord notes that today, surveys and other statistical analysis help us to identify uneven or insufficient resource distribution within a given geographical area or people group and make adjustments accordingly (Dealing with Spatial Dimensions of Inequality in Indonesia: Towards a Social Accord, Iyanatul Islam).

Resource scarcity remains a problem for the common man in the 21st-Century but we are privileged access to the wisdom of the greatest minds who have come before us and to the authentic stories of men and women who have lived lives as full of struggle and hardship as our own.
Works Cited
"Adam Smith."  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  Web.  2014.  

"Alfred Marshall." World Heritage Encyclopedia.  Web.  2014.  

Bedale, Charles Lees.  Sumerian Tablets from Umma in the John Rylands Library, Manchester.  Manchester:  The University Press, 1915. 

Dougherty, Raymond Philip.  Records from Erech, Time of Nabonidus (555-538 B.C.).  Volume 6.  New Haven:  Yale University Press, 1920.

Economics.”  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  Web.  2014.  

Islam, Iyanatul.  Dealing with Spatial Dimensions of Inequality in Indonesia: Towards a Social Accord.  The World Bank, 2003. 

Marshall, Alfred.  Principles of Economics.  Volume 1.  London:  Macmillan Publishers, 1890. 

Rae, John.  Life of Adam Smith.  London:  Macmillan Publishers, Ltd., 1895. 

Smith, Adam.  The Wealth of Nations.  London:  Methuen, 1904. 
Economics Collections
It has been said that money makes the world go 'round. It's certainly clear that the men and women behind the world's wealth both drive society forward and at times cause it to regress. 

The World’s Wealth Exhibit shelves thousands of relevant digital works from collections all over the world including:

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Top 100 books on Economics

  • The Decline of American Capitalism (by )
  • Anarchism and Other Essays (by )
  • Democracy in America, Vol. 1 (by )
  • The Accumulation of Capital (by )
  • Theory of Moral Sentiments, The (First E... (by )
  • The Abolition of Poverty (by )
  • The Causes of Poverty (by )
  • A synopsis of the first three books of J... (by )
  • The Way to Wealth; Or, Poor Richard Impr... (by )
  • Walden Or, Life in the Woods (by )
  • The Cry for Justice; An Anthology of the... (by )
  • Progress and Poverty; an Inquiry Into th... (by )
  • Mutual Aid (by )
  • A Contribution to the Critique of Politi... (by )
  • The Servile State (by )
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  • Part Iii. Administrative, Procedural and... (by )
  • Total U.S. Exports (Origin of Movement) ... (by )
  • Report of Committee on Rural Credits, 19... (by )
  • La Grande Voie Nationale : Mémoire Relat... 
  • Department of Justice : Claims under the... (by )
  • The Journal of the Society of Arts : 185... Volume Vol.6 
  • The Fats and Oils Situation Volume: 91(1944:Sept.) (by )
  • Readings in the Economics of War; (by )
  • The prudential center, part i: its direc... Volume Part: 1 (by )
  • Request for Public Inspection or Copy of... (by )
  • Metrics Matters : Measures of Governance... (by )
  • The Repository of Arts, Literature, Comm... (by )
  • Royal Commission on Agriculture in India... (by )
  • Organized Banking (by )
  • Department of the Interior, Fish and Wil... (by )
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Department of Commerce Collection

  • Printed Books, Newspapers, Pictures and ... (by )
  • Total U.S. Exports (Origin of Movement) ... (by )
  • The American Community Survey (Acs) en E... (by )
  • Total U.S. Exports (Origin of Movement) ... (by )
  • Appeal of Denial of Request for Correcti... (by )
  • 2002 Economic Census Information Industr... (by )
  • Office of the Secretary There Are Lesson... (by )
  • Office of the Secretary Office of the Se... (by )
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminis... (by )
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminis... (by )
  • National Telecommunications and Informat... (by )
  • Nist Fy 1996 Superfund Charges to the En... (by )
  • Section I - Chapter 2 Meat and Edible Me... (by )
  • Doc It Security Program Policy and Minim... (by )
  • Social Security Cola (by )
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Economics Publications Collection

  • National Association of Independent Insu... (by )
  • Can-Spam Act Rulemaking, Project No. R41... (by )
  • Annual Report of the Federal Trade Commi... (by )
  • Kagera Health and Development Survey Sup... (by )
  • Iraq Status (by )
  • Re: Can-Spam Act Rulemaking, Project No.... (by )
  • Coalition to Implement the Fact Act 
  • Please Do Not Repeal the Minimum Adverti... 
  • United States of America before the Fede... (by )
  • Re: Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemakin... (by )
  • United States of America Federal Trade C... (by )
  • In the United States Court of Appeals fo... (by )
  • United States of America Federal Trade C... (by )
  • The World Heritage City of Fez Urban Con... (by )
  • Infrastructure and the World Bank : A Pr... (by )
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Export and Trade Collection

  • Draft Working Papers Iraq Status (by )
  • Hong Kong (by )
  • Ministry of Trade (by )
  • Coalition Provisional Authority Memorand... (by )
  • Iraq Weekly Status Report (by )
  • International Trade Finance Report (by )
  • Export America (by )
  • Making Dough Is Good for Business (by )
  • Export Programs Guide (by )
  • Iraq Weekly Status Report (by )
  • Iraq Weekly Status Report (by )
  • Ask the Ita (by )
  • Pharmaceuticals (by )
  • Export America (by )
  • Iraq Weekly Status Report (by )
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Federal Trade Commission

  • United States of America Federal Trade C... (by )
  • In the United States District Court for ... (by )
  • Re: Can-Spam Act Rulemaking, Project No.... (by )
  • United States District Court Central Dis... (by )
  • Re: Ftc File No. 981-0339 Albertson's Am... (by )
  • Marketing Privacy: A Solution for the Bl... (by )
  • In the United States District Court for ... (by )
  • Amcpss Concepts in Managed Care Pharmacy... 
  • Respondents Brief in Opposition to Abbot... (by )
  • United States District Court for the Sou... (by )
  • United States District Court for the Nor... (by )
  • Re: Comments to Hsr Proposed Rulemaking,... 
  • Office of Inspector General Independent ... 
  • United States of America Federal Trade C... (by )
  • Plaintiffs Memorandum of Points and Auth... (by )
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Small Business Administration Collection

  • Strategic Planning for the Growing Busin... (by )
  • Pro-Net the Web Site for Buyers and Sell... (by )
  • Chapter 1 : Small Business Administratio... (by )
  • The Y2K Action Loan for Small Businesses (by )
  • Sba U.S. Small Business Administration t... (by )
  • Drug Free Workplaces (by )
  • Guia para Obtener Prestamos (Abcs of Bor... (by )
  • The Facts about the Wnet Roundtable the ... (by )
  • U.S. Small Business Administration (by )
  • How to Write a Business Plan (by )
  • Business Plan for the Small Retailer (by )
  • Sba U.S. Small Business Administration D... (by )
  • 1999 Small Business Winners Nomination G... (by )
  • Financing for the Small Business (by )
  • Ace-Net the Angel Capital Electronic Net... (by )
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  • Works, Comic and Serious, In Prose and V... (by )
  • The Economic Theory of the Location of R... (by )
  • Conflict Prevention (by )
  • Oekonomische encyklopädie; Volume: 228 (by )
  • Oekonomische encyklopädie; Volume: 63 (by )
  • Old Home to Be Torn Down on La Delta Pro... (by )
  • Fourth Advanced Contract Law Course (by )
  • State of the Art of Short-run Financial ... Volume: 1446 (by )
  • Le Credit Immobilier en Belgique et en F... 
  • Industrie des Métaux Secondaires et des ... (by )
  • Mine and Expeditionary Warfare Advanced ... (by )
  • Old Fire House Mobile, Alabama, Photogra... (by )
  • Returning Home with Wagons Loaded with E... (by )
  • Applying Sequential Monte Carlo Methods ... (by )
  • Craig's Business Directory and Baltimore... Volume Year 1842 
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