Page last updated at 12:35 GMT, Friday, 4 July 2008 13:35 UK

Crowd sees Smith statue unveiled

Adam Smith statue

A 10ft bronze statue of Scottish economist and philosopher Adam Smith has gone on show in Edinburgh.

It was unveiled on Friday on the Royal Mile in the heart of Scotland's capital city, where Smith worked and died.

The statue, on a massive stone plinth, was created by Alexander Stoddart from Paisley - Scotland's leading monumental sculptor.

It was unveiled by Nobel laureate economist Vernon Smith in front of a huge crowd at 1215 BST.

Dr Eamonn Butler, director of the Adam Smith Institute, said: "This honour is long overdue.

"As author of The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith was the pioneer of what today we call economics. He championed the benefits of specialization and free trade, creating the very idea of the modern market economy that dominates the free world today."

Private subscription

The statue, which has been surrounded by sheets since it was erected last week ahead of its unveiling, is next to St Giles Cathedral, opposite Edinburgh's City Chambers.

Adam Smith taught at Glasgow University and lived and is buried in Edinburgh. He was born in 1723 and died in 1790.

He is known primarily as the author of two treatises: The Theory of Moral Sentiments, which was published in 1759, and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, which was first published in 1776.

Smith is also known for his explanation of how rational self-interest and competition can lead to economic well-being and prosperity.

The statue has been paid for by private subscription, organised by Dr Butler.

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