The first publication of Dugald Stewart’s lectures on political economy

Lina Weber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Dugald Stewart’s contribution to the formation of political economy as a science in the early nineteenth century is ambiguous. The professor of moral philosophy at the University of Edinburgh was the first academic to teach an independent course on political economy. However, scholars often assign Stewart a rather indirect role on the formation of political economy as a distinct body of knowledge because he never published his innovative lectures. The article argues that the assumption that Stewart’s lectures were known only to a small group of students is mistaken. Between 1814 and 1815, the London-based journal The New Monthly Magazine published a series of anonymous essays under the titles “MS. Recollections of Lectures on Political Oeconomy” and “Recollections of the Unpublished Lectures of an Eminent Professor.” Comparing these essays with manuscript notes that students took on Stewart’s lectures, the article shows that these “Recollections” were taken from Stewart’s teaching and made its content available to a wider audience.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4
Pages (from-to)721-744
JournalHistory of Political Economy
Early online date23 Jun 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Jun 2021


  • Dugald Stewart
  • Science
  • Teaching political economy


Dive into the research topics of 'The first publication of Dugald Stewart’s lectures on political economy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this