CRUMPE, Samuel M.D. An Essay on the Best Means of Providing Employment for the People. To which was adjudged The Prize proposed by the Royal Irish Academy for the best dissertation on that subject. The second edition.

685.00

1 in stock

London: Robinson, 1795. Crown octavo. pp. xxviii, 339, [1]. With a half-title. Recent quarter calf on marbled boards, title in gilt on original red morocco label on spine. Library stamps on titlepage. Paper repair to foredges of half title and title. A very good copy. Very rare.

COPAC with 9 locations only. Goldsmiths’ 16182. ESTC T61136.
Samuel Crumpe (1766-1796), medical doctor and essayist, was the eldest of six children of Daniel Crumpe, of Barleymount, near Killarney, County Kerry, and Grace Crumpe (née Orpen). Deciding on a medical career, he entered the University of Edinburgh in 1785, graduating MD in 1788. He wrote a work on opium which was published in 1793, and for ‘An Essay on the Best Means of Providing Employment for the People of Ireland’, first published in Dublin in the same year, he gained a prize from the Royal Irish Academy and admission as a member. This work was very successful, this second edition (dropped ‘of Ireland’ in the title, presumably for a wider readership) appeared within two years, followed by a third and a German translation shortly afterwards. In this work he emphasised the importance of agriculture, and attacked low wages as ‘a premium to idleness’; he also maintained that people would be lazy when working unless well paid. The essay also echoed popular concerns of the time when Crumpe argued that a prosperous Britain would lead to a prosperous Ireland, and it hinted at the dangers of separation.” (DIB).
M’Cullough styles this work “A really valuable production ... The principles which prevade the work are sound; and those parts of it which have special reference to Ireland are distinguished by the absence of prejudice, and by their practical good sense”. It is, in fact, a work which could not have failed to establish his reputation as a sensible and kind-hearted man, a true patriot, and a zealous philanthropist Tending to the poor of Limerick, he died at the very early age of twenty-nine, as a result of a fever said to have been contracted during the course of his work. As a medical doctor, Crumpe was highly respected. Because of his proficiency in curing people, ‘Ta sé chomh maith le Dochtúir Crumpe’ (He’s as good as Dr Crumpe) became a common saying in Kerry. His career was cut tragically short in 1796, at the age of 30. Walking along a Limerick street he discovered a woman who had collapsed. Diagnosing that she had a fever from cholera, he brought her swiftly to a hospital. Unfortunately he too caught the same contagion and died on 27 January 1796. He married (May 1792) Susan Ingram; they had one son, who died in infancy, and one daughter.

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