Being of a temperament that expressed itself only in action, and neither a theorist nor a cabinet-minister, he held the views of a statesman without having a following sufficient to realize them.
The great theorist of these conquistadores was Machiavelli.
A phrase of Montesquieu, placed at the head of this work, sums up the views of the young theorist: "The people, possessing the supreme power, should do for itself all that it is able to do; what it cannot do well, it must do through its elected representatives."
The word "doctrinaire" has become naturalized in English terminology, as applied, in a slightly contemptuous sense, to a theorist, as distinguished from a practical man of affairs.
But a certain exaggeration of emphasis may be pardoned in a writer seeking to attract the attention of an indifferent public. It was not, however, as a theorist dealing with the fundamental data of economic science, but as a brilliant writer on practical economic questions, that Jevons first received general recognition.