Thomas Mun, son of John Mun, mercer, of London, and grandson of John Mun, provost of moneyers in the Royal Mint, was born in 1571. He acquired wealth and reputation as a merchant engaged in the Levant trade, and in 1615 he was elected a member of the committee, i.e. a director, of the recently established East India Company. It was the controversies to which the action of the East India Company gave rise that led to the publication of his opinions upon trade. To defend the Company against the outcry caused by its exportation of precious metal, he published in 1621 A Discourse of Trade from England into the East Indies. Of this a second edition appeared in the same year, and it was reprinted in Purchas's Pilgrims in 1625. In the present century it has been reprinted in the volume of Early English Tracts on Commerce issued by the Political Economy Club, in 1856. The views there set forth attracted considerable attention, and they were the occasion of protracted controversy (1622-1623) between Gerard Malynes and Edward Misselden. In 1628 Mun drew up for presentation to the House of Commons The Petition and Remonstrance of the Governor and Company of Merchants of London trading to the East Indies (dealing with the relations between the English and Dutch), which was reprinted in 1641, and of which much of the argument and language reappeared later in his best known book. Mun continued to enjoy great prosperity in his business undertakings, and was able to buy several estates in Kent, and thus lay the foundations of a county family. He died in 1641.
His treatise, England's Treasure by Forraign Trade,