MONEY is not, properly speaking, one of the subjects of commerce; but only the instrument, which men have agreed upon to facilitate the exchange of one commodity for another. ’Tis none of the wheels of trade: ’Tis the oil, which renders the motion of the wheels more smooth and easy. If we consider any one kingdom by itself, ’tis evident, that the greater or less plenty of money is of no consequence; since the prices of commodities are always proportion’d to the plenty of money, and a crown in Harry the VII’s. time serv’d the same purpose as a pound does at present. ’Tis only the public, that draws any advantage from the greater plenty of money; and that only in its wars and negociations with foreign states. And this is the reason, why all rich and trading countries, from Carthage to Britain and Holland, have employ’d mercenary troops, which they hir’d from their poorer neighbours. Were they to make use of their native subjects, they would find less advantage from their superior riches, and from their great plenty of gold and silver; since the pay of all their servants must rise in proportion to the public opulence. Our small army in Britain of 20,000 men are maintain’d at as great expence as a French army thrice as numerous. The English fleet, during the late war, requir’d as much money to support it as all the Roman legions, which kept the whole world in subjection, during the time of the emperors * .