Hawaii air for TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY physiocrats A FRENCH ECONOMIC movement founded by Francois QUESNAY and a major influence on Adam SMITH and later economists, physiocracy derived its name from the physiocrats 647 fundamental idea that economic systems should follow the rule (-cracy) of nature (physio). The movement was partly a reaction against two doctrines that dominated the economic life of 18th-century FRANCE and other European nations: MERCANTILISM, the idea that government should promote exports and discourage imports so that the country would accumulate gold; and Colbertism, named after the French commerce minister Jean-Baptiste COLBERT (1619 83), which tried to regulate every aspect of economic life, even to the number of threads in lace. Colbertism also tried to encourage manufacturing at the expense of agriculture. Quesnay, the founder of physiocracy, came from a farming family in rural France and was orphaned at the age of 13.
He educated himself in medicine and became a successful surgeon. His writings included a book titled On the Circulation of Blood and two encyclopedia articles about farming. These foreshadowed some of his later ideas about economics.
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