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In fairness to Hume it should be noted, however, that in his essay "Of the Populousness of Ancient Nations" he did express considerable disgust concerning slavery (381-451).
The populousness of democracies generally preserves them (for number is to democracy in the place of justice based on merit); whereas the preservation of an oligarchy clearly depends on an opposite principle, namely, good order"; Politics 6.
A small list of generically surprising, diverse, often ironically framed eighteenth-century works about census and population as partly imaginary would include, obviously, Swift's "A Modest Proposal" (parody-tract); Defoe's A Journal of the Plague Year (proto-novel) and The True-Born Englishman (popular verse satire about images of English migration history); Hume's "Of the Populousness of Ancient Nations" (a philosophical-critical reading of imagined numberings); Goldsmith's "The Deserted Village" and Gray's "Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard" (poems as plaintive "anti-censuses," officially-unofficial counts); intellectual cafe dialogue about emigration and numbers in Boswell's Life of Johnson (Fri.
Marcus," An Essay on Populousness (1838), On the Possibility of Limiting Populousness (1838), and The Book of Murder (1839).