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stock of corn, which they wanted. But be this as it will, which I lay no stress on ; this I dare boldly affirm, that the same rule of propriety, (viz.) that every man should have as much as he could make use of, would hold still in the world, without straitening any body; since there is land enough in the world to suffice double the inhabitants, had not the invention of money, and the tacit agreement of men to put a value on it, introduced (by consent) larger poffeffions, and a right to them; which, how it has done, I shall by and by thew more at large.
§. 37. This is certain, that in the beginning, before the desire of having more than man needed had altered the intrinsic value of things, which depends only on their usefulness to the life of man ; or had agreed, that a little piece of yellow metal, which would keep, without wasting or decay, should be worth a great piece of flesh, or a whole heap of corn ; though men had a right to appropriate, by their labour, each one to himself, as much of the things of nature, as he could use : yet this could not be much, nor to the prejudice of others, where the same plenty was still left to those who would use the same industry. To which let me add, that he who appropriates land to himself by his labour, does not lessen, but increase the common stock of mankind: for the provisions serving to the support of human life, pró
duced by, one acredit one acre of inclosed nand cul
cultivated land, are (to speak much within compass) ten times more than those which are yielded by an acre of land of an equal richness lying waste in common. And therefore he that incloses land, and has a greater plenty of the conveniencies of life from ten acres, than he could have from an hundred left to nature, may truly be said to give ninety acres to mankind : for his labour now fupplies 'him with provisions out of ten acres, which were but the product of an hundred lying in common. I have here rated the improved land very low, in making its product but as ten to one, when it is much nearer an hundred to one: for I ask, whether in the wild woods and uncultivated waste of America, left to nature, without any improve ment, tillage or husbandry, a thousand acres yield the needy and wretched inhabitants as many conveniencies of life, as ten acres of equally fertile land do in Devonshire, where they are well cultivated?
oil, 1. Before the appropriation of land, he who gathered as much of the wild fruit, killed, caught, or tamed, as many of the beasts, as he could; he that fo imployed his pains about any of the spontaneous products of nature, as any way to alter them from the state which natüre put them in, by placing any of his labour on them, did thereby acquire a propriéty in them: but if they perished,
in his poffeffion, without their due use; if the fruits "rotted, or the venison putrified, before he could spend it, he offended against the common law of nature, and was liable to be punished; he invaded his neighbour's share, for he had no right, farther than bis use called for any of them, and they might serve to afford him conveniencies of life.
$. 38. The same measures governed the pofefion of land too : whatsoever he tilled and reaped, laid up and made use of, before it spoiled, that was his peculiar right; whatsoever he enclosed, and could feed, and make use of, the cattle and product was also his. But if either the grass of his inclosure rotted on the ground, or the fruit of his planting perished without gathering, and laying up, this part of the earth, notwithstanding his inclosure, was still to be looked on as waste, and might be the possession of any other. Thus, at the beginning, Cain might take as much ground as he could till, and make it his own land, and yet leave enough to
Abel's Theep to feed on ; a few acres would ferve for both their poffeffions. But as families increased, and industry, inlarged their stocks, their poseffions inlarged with the need of them ; but yet it was commonly without
fixed property in the ground they made use of, till they incorporated, settled themselves together, and built cities; and then, by consent, they came in time, to set out Q?
the bounds of their distinɛt territories, and ,
agree on limits between them and their neighbours, and by laws within themselves, settled the properties of those of the same society for we fee, that in that part of the world which was first inhabited, and therefore like to be best peopled, even as low down as Abraham's time, they wandered with their flocks, and their herds, which was their fubftance, freely up and down; and this Abraham did, in a country where he was a stranger. Whence it is plain, that at least a great part of the land lay in common ; that the inhabitants valued it not, nor claimed property
any more than they made use of. But when there was not room enough in the same place, for their herds to feed together, they by consent, as Abraham and Lot did, Gen. xiii. 5. separated and inlarged their pasture, where it best liked them. And for the same reason Esau went from his father,
and his brother, and planted in mount Seir, 1. Gen. xxxvi. 6.
§. 39. And thus, without supposing any private dominion, and property in Adam, over all the world, exclusive of all other men, which can no way be proved, nor any one's property be made out from it; but supposing the world given, as it was, to the children of men in common, we see how labour could make men distinct titles to several parcels of it, for
their private uses; wherein there could be no doubt of right, no room for quarrel...ninis
$. 40. Nor is it so strange, as perhaps before consideration it may appear, that the property of labour should be able to overbalance the community of land : for, it is labour indeed that puts the difference of value on every thing; and let any one consider what the difference is between an acre of land planted with tobacco or sugar, sown with wheat or barley, and an acre of the same land lying in common, without any husbandry upon it, and he will find, that the improvement of labour makes the far greater part of the value. ' I think it will be but a very modest computation to say, that of the products of the earth useful to the life of man nine tenths are the effects of labour : nay, if we will rightly estimate things as they come to our ufe, and cast up the several expences about them, what in them is purely owing
, and what to labour, we shall find, there
most of them ninety-nine hundredths are wholly to be put on the account of labour.
$. 41. There cannot be a clearer demonstration of any thing, than several nations of the Americans are of this, who are rich in land, and poor in all the comforts of life; whom nature having furnished as liberally as any other people, with the materials of plenty, i. l. a fruitful foil, apt to produce in abundance, what might