CHARLES RICHARD DE BUTRÃ‰: PIONEER OF MATHEMATICAL ECONOMICS
Loïc Charles () and
Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 2016, vol. 38, issue 3, 311-327
Historians of economics have acknowledged the significant role FranÃ§ois Quesnay and the Physiocrats played in the early development of mathematical economics. It is, however, important to note that although the Tableau Ã©conomique could well be translated into algebra, Quesnay never did it. As part of our research on Charles Richard de ButrÃ©, an obscure collaborator of FranÃ§ois Quesnay, we have uncovered documents that show that he was one Physiocrat who did use algebra to explain his theoretical conceptions. In two texts written at the end of 1766 and the beginning of 1767, ButrÃ© systematically used algebra as an aid for economic reasoning. Our argument is that these texts provide very interesting insights into the development of early mathematical economics.
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