Terence Wilmot Hutchison

Terence Wilmot Hutchison FBA (August 13, 1912 – October 6, 2007) was an economist. Born in Bournemouth, England, he attended Peterhouse, Cambridge in 1931 to study the classics but switched to economics. He took his bachelor of arts degree, with first class honours, in 1934. Subsequently, he spent a year at the London School of Economics (LSE), then became a lecturer in economics in Bonn, Germany in 1935, due to an interest in Ludwig Wittgenstein. He spent approximately three years in Bonn, learning the German language while researching German studies in economics.


The son of Robert Langton Douglas, he was a half-brother to Marshal of the Royal Air Force William Sholto Douglas, 1st Baron Douglas of Kirtleside. He married the German national Loretta Hack. The couple moved to Baghdad, where he took a position at a teacher training college. Eventually, they moved to Bombay. During World War II, he joined the British military, serving as an intelligence officer on the Northwest Frontier, in Egypt, and then in Delhi.

In 1946, he began his British university career with a position at the University of Hull. After a year at Hull, he moved to the LSE, where he became interested in the history of economics. The University of Birmingham named him Mitsui Professor of Economics in 1956, holding that position he held until he retired in 1978. He continued to teach the history of economics for another two years.

After retiring, Hutchison published the book Before Adam Smith in 1988,[1] the first book in English to systematically analyze 18th Century economic writing before the publication of Adam Smith's seminal work The Wealth of Nations (1776).

His wife Loretta died in 1981. In 1983, he married Christine Donaldson, who died in 2003. He had three children.

Selected publications


  1. Terence W. Hutchison, 1988. Before Adam Smith: The Emergence of Political Economy 1662-1776. Oxford.
  2. See for instance: Mark Blaug, 1987. "Hutchison, Terence Wilmot," The New Palgrave: A Dictionary of Economics, v. 2, p. 703. Link, Roger E. Backhouse, 2008. "Hutchison, Terence Wilmot (1912–2007)," The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics, 2nd Edition. Link, R. N. Ghosh, 2007. "Terence Wilmot Hutchison: My Reminiscences," Communications and Notes, 46(Summer), History of Economics Review, pp. 162-69 and Google Scholar searches of "The Significance and Basic Postulates of Economic Theory" and "Terence W. Hutchison" OR "T. W. Hutchison".

External links

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