Sir Thomas Mun: The Last Of The Early Mercantilism

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Sir Thomas Mun (17 June 1571 – 21 July 1641) was an English thinker and writer on economics and is often referred to as the last of the early mercantilists. Mun used mercantilist principles to create a proposed set of "means to enrich a kingdom" which centered on ensuring that exports exceeded imports. In other words, Mun promoted a positive balance of trade that would cause England 's wealth to steadily increase. Thomas Mun is also renowned as a sophisticated thinker and has made significant contributions to the history of economic theory.

According to Mun, trade was the only way to increase England 's wealth, and he suggested several courses of action. Mercantilists have never denied the inherent nationalist characteristic that their works share. The purpose of both mercantilists and economic nationalism is to propel and enhance the power of the nation state. This could be observed in Mun’s work as well.

Thus, the term paper intends to answer the following research question:

“What inferences can be made from the works of Thomas Mun on the relationship between seventeenth-century English nationalism and mercantilism?”


Thomas Mun became prominent in England during the economic depression of 1620. He served as the director of the East India Company. The company gained criticism from many writers and thinkers for two things: (1) England imported more from India than it exported, and (2) England sent precious metals to India to pay for

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