Torrens, Robert

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Torrens, Robert


Born 1780 in Ireland; died May 27, 1864, in London. British political economist. Member of the Royal Society (1818).

In his works, dealing primarily with trade and the circulation of money, Torrens departed from D. Ricardo’s labor theory of value in favor of the vulgar economists’ conception of production costs. He held that the source of profit is not the exploitation of wage laborers but the selling of goods at prices exceeding their true value. As an exponent of the quantity theory of money, Torrens belonged to the currency school, whose ideas formed the basis of R. Peel’s bank act of 1844.

Torrens was an advocate of free trade.


An Essay on the Production of Wealth. London, 1821.


Marx, K. “Teorii pribavochnoi stoimosti, ” ch. 20. In K. Marx and F. Engels, Soch., 2nd ed., vol. 26, part 3, pp. 65–81.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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xciii TORRENS, Robert, F.R.S., An essay on the external corn trade; containing an inquiry into the general principles of that important branch of traffic; an examination of the exceptions to which these principles are liable; and a comparative statement of the effects which restrictions on importation and free intercourse, are calculated to produce upon subsistence, agriculture, commerce, and revenue, London 1815, xix+348p.