Federalist No. 11

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Alexander Hamilton, author of Federalist No. 11

Federalist No. 11 is an essay by Alexander Hamilton, the eleventh of The Federalist Papers.[1] It was published on November 23, 1787 under the pseudonym Publius, the name under which all The Federalist Papers were published.[2] It is titled, "The Utility of the Union in Respect to Commercial Relations and a Navy."[3]

Summary[edit]

The essay begins with Publius admitting that the "adventurous spirit" of America has already made the European countries uneasy about engaging in trade.[3] Publius explains that continued uneasiness will deprive the States of "active commerce."[4] Publius then posits that a Union would counteract that problem by making prohibitory regulations that are uniform throughout the states, thus requiring foreign countries to negotiate with the Union as a whole and bid against each other for trading rights.[5]

Publius then moves to discuss the importance of establishing a federal navy.[6] This would increase the Union's ability to gain access and control the trade opportunities of the West Indies, thus allowing the Union to set prices and control all European trade in the Americas, putting the Union in a commanding position over foreign trade.[7] This "active commerce" in controlling trade, as opposed to "passive commerce," reflects the American spirit.[8]

Publius further emphasizes not just the importance of controlling foreign trade, but also that a Union would allow "an unrestrained intercourse between the States themselves."[9] The naval presence will allow the States to protect trade among themselves and help promote mutual gains.[9] Without a Union between the States, trade would be less successful; "would be fettered, interrupted, and narrowed by a multiplicity of causes."[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hamilton, Alexander. "Federalist No. 11". The Avalon Project. Lillian Goldman Law Library, Yale University. Retrieved 7 December 2011. 
  2. ^ Hamilton, Alexander. "Federalist No. 11". The Federalist Papers. Library of Congress. Retrieved 7 December 2011. 
  3. ^ a b The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. p. 79. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  4. ^ The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. p. 80. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  5. ^ The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. pp. 80–81. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  6. ^ The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. p. 81. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  7. ^ The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. pp. 81–82. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  8. ^ The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. p. 83. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  9. ^ a b The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. p. 84. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 
  10. ^ The Federalist Papers. New York: New American Library, a division of Penguin Books. 1999. p. 85. ISBN 0-451-52881-6. 

External links[edit]

The Avalon Project, Yale University

Library of Congress