What is Meant by Physiocracy?

By K Balaji|Updated : January 5th, 2023

Physiocracy is an economic theory developed in the 18th century by a group of French Enlightenment economists. According to physiocracy, a country's prosperity is solely determined by the value of "land agriculture" or "land development" and farming products.

Physiocracy: Meaning and Causes

Physiocracy evolved into one of the first well-refined economic theories over the centuries. The Tableau Economique, also known as the Economic Table, was developed by Francois Quesnay in 1759. Quesnay first published his work in the field of medicine. However, his interest in the healing power of nature made him shift to economics. He spread the physiocrats' economic theories as well as the roots of modern ideas about the distribution of wealth in the economy.

  • The physiocrats coined the term Physiocracy to emphasise fruitful work as a source of national wealth.
  • The study distinguished itself from earlier schools, such as Mercantilism, which focused on the ruler's assets, gold collection, or trade balance.
  • The primary causes introducing Physiocracy were financial, political, and social attributes.
  • The first reason that caused Physiocracy to come to light was a revolt of the French against Mercantilism (Measuring the country's wealth through export, stores of gold, and precious metals).
  • Under the Finance Minister of France, Colbert, dragged the theory of Mercantilism to a decisive extent.
  • Since he also had a medical background, Quesnay related the circulation of wealth in an economy to the circulation of blood in the body.

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FAQs on Meaning of Physiocracy

  • Physiocracy was an economic theory founded in 18th-century France, and it was distinguished primarily by the thought that Government policy should not hamper the operation of natural economic laws. That land is the source of all wealth. The study was considered the first scientific school of economics.

  • Francois Quesnay, a court physician to King Louis the 15th, was the father of Physiocracy between 1694-1774. The leading causes of the rise of Physiocracy were economic, political, and social aspects. Since Quesnay had a medical background, he related the circulation of wealth in an economy to blood circulation in human body.

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