Definition of physiocrat in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈfizēəˌkrat/


A member of an 18th-century group of French economists who believed that agriculture was the source of all wealth and that agricultural products should be highly priced. Advocating adherence to a supposed natural order of social institutions, they also stressed the necessity of free trade.
Example sentences
  • However, the French physiocrats and the British classical economists entirely destroyed the rest of the mercantilist scheme.
  • It can be traced in the theories of public finance to the work of the 18th century French physiocrats.
  • Smith's view of taxes on land has been the general view among economists since then, and in fact one can trace Smith's argument to the French physiocrats who preceded him.



Pronunciation: /ˌfizēˈäkrəsē/
Example sentences
  • Chapters 2 to 11 provide surveys of traditional topics such as ancient Greek and medieval economics, mercantilism, physiocracy, political arithmetic, Adam Smith, classical economics, and Marx.
  • The result was a new category of science whose original nomenclature, ‘physiocracy’ (the rule of nature), was discarded for that of ‘economics’ but then restored as other schools emerged, each with its distinctive emphasis.


Pronunciation: /ˌfizēəˈkradik/
Example sentences
  • It will be evident from the book's title that our attention is to be directed at those enlightenment authors who were roughly a generation younger than Quesnay and his physiocratic contemporaries.
  • Government ministers, who found it impossible to reduce royal expenditures, were particularly seduced by the physiocratic idea of stimulating agriculture and then taxing the resulting wealth.
  • It is a descriptive account, with occasional physiocratic remarks, that essentially transcribes documents from diverse origins, mainly the companies themselves.


Late 18th century: from French physiocrate, from physiocratie 'physiocracy' (see physio-, -cracy).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: phys·i·o·crat

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.