“Finally, something should be said about the manner in which the ideas of the Scottish Historical School were transmitted to the 19th century, and in particular to Marx and Engels. A direct connection existed, of course, in the case of Adam Smith, upon whose work Marx wrote a number of extended commentaries (without, however, having the ‘Glasgow Lectures’ available to him); and also in he case of Ferguson, from whom Marx quotes several times (mainly in connection with the division of labour) in ‘The Poverty of Philosophy’ and ‘Capital’. But in the case of Millar there does not seem to have been any direct connection. Although Marx and Engels acknowledged in general terms their indebtedness to the British and French sociologists of the 18th century (1), and to “all the English historians up to 1850” (2), I have not found any specific reference to Millar in their writings. This is hardly surprising, in view of the swift decline in the influence of Millar’s work in the years following his death. The French Revolution and the accompanying disturbances at home, the wars against France, and, most important of all, the gradual development of organised struggle between labourers and capitalists, made it very difficult for these dangerous ideas to survive, at least in the middle-class milieu which had originally given birth to them (3). There is no doubt, however, that Millar’s work played an important part in the creation of the climate of opinion in which the work of men like the “Ricardian socialists” and the early Chartists was able to flourish” [John Saville a cura; saggi di Christopher HILL S.F. MASON Ronald L. MEEK Henry COLLINS John SAVILLE Daphne SIMON E.J. HOBSBAWM V.G. KIERNAN, Democracy and the Labor Movement. Essays in honour of Dona Torr. LAWRENCE & WISHART LTD. LONDON. 1954 pag 275 8°  prefazione di George THOMSON Maurice DOBB Christophjer HILL John SAVILLE, note indice nomi argomenti][(1) See, e.g., the quotation from ‘The German Ideology’ at the beginning of this essay (a); (2) Marx and Engels, ‘Correspondence, op.cit., p. 518, cf. ibid. p. 56; (3) Cf. Lehmann, “John Millar, Historical Sociologists’, loc. cit., p: 45: “The tide of the time was running strongly against the acceptance of ideas like Millar’s. Not only did the directly political elements in his teaching meet with strong opposition from the more reactionary of his contemporaries; but even more, even the most ‘non-political’ elements in his work, his historical, analytical, functional approach to the problems of law, government and society, contained a threat so the established order of things that was clearly recognised by men of insight. And those responsible for the education of future leaders did their best to provide them with another diet… Under such conditions writing like Millar’s would be read only by courageous men of strong convictions”][(a) The first necessity in any theory of history, wrote Marx and Engels in ‘The German Ideology’, is to accord its due importance to a certain fundamental fact – the fact that “men must be in a position to live in order to be able to ‘make history'”. The production of the means to satisfy the needs of life is “a fundamental condition of all history”. The French and the English, said Marx and Engels, “even if they have conceived the relation of this fact with so-called history only in an extremely one-sided fashion, particularly as long as they remained in the toils of political ideology, have nevertheless made the first attempts to give the writing of history a materialistic basis by being the first to write histories of civil society, of commerce and industry” (The German Ideology, English edition, 1938, p. 16)]