A new economic system for the Spanish monarchy. «Reflexiones sobre el estado actual del comercio de España» (1761), by Simón de Aragorri


  • Jesús Astigarraaga Universidad de Zaragoza




international circulation of ideas of political economy, Spanish Enlightenment, economic reforms, Jacques Accarias de Serionne, David Hume, physiocracy


The vast political and economical treatise entitled Reflexiones sobre el estado actual del comercio de España was published in 1761. Despite historians, from, at least, two decades ago, are well aware about its existence and had identified its author as Simón de Aragorri, the treatise had materially vanished and therefore there was not any analysis available about it. This article, therefore, first analyzes its content emphasizing its structure, intellectual sources and economic significance. The analysis concludes that Reflexiones is basically a translation-adaptation of a French work by the economist Jacques Accarias de Serionne that aims at promoting a shift on the economic policy of the Spanish Monarchy, either in the peninsula or in the colonial territories, in order to rationalize Public Finances, solving monetary distress caused by the coming to Spain of precious metals and transforming the old protectionist and industrialist policies inherited from Uztáriz and Ulloa into a new strategy of economic growth based on the agrarian development and the free trade. Thanks to Accarias de Serionne’s influence, Aragorri profusely used Forbonnais, Hume and Herbert economic ideas, to which he added those of the physiocrats.