Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Mongrédien, Augustus
MONGREDIEN, AUGUSTUS (1807–1888), political economist and miscellaneous writer, born in London in 1807, was son of a French officer who fled to England after Bonaparte's coup d'etat in 1798. He was educated in the Roman catholic college at Penn, Buckinghamshire, and continued his studies long after leaving that institution. He entered commercial life at an early age, and was the owner of the first screw steamers to the Levant. In 1859 he became a member of the firm of H. J. Johnston & Co., and when it was broken up in 1864 he began as a cornbroker on his own account. In 1862 he purchased Heatherside, Surrey. Gradually he withdrew from business and devoted most of his attention to literary pursuits. He had joined the National Political Union in 1831, and in 1872 he was elected a member of the Cobden Club, under the auspices of which society several of his treatises were published. He thoroughly grasped the free-trade question, and expounded his views on the most difficult problems of political economy with great lucidity. He was a good musician and an excellent botanist, and was elected president of the Chess Club in 1839; he had a colloquial knowledge of seven languages, could recite many pages of the Koran, and spoke modern Greek like a native. Mr. Gladstone, in recognition of his merits, placed his name on the Civil Pension List. Mongredien died at Forest Hill, London, on 30 March 1888. His principal works are:
- 'Trees and Shrubs for English Plantations; a selection and description of the most Ornamental Trees and Shrubs, Native and Foreign, which will flourish in the Open Air in our Climate … with Illustrations,' London, 8vo.
- 'England's Foreign Policy; an Enquiry as to whether we should continue a Policy of Intervention,' London, 8vo.
- 'The Heatherside Manual of Hardy Trees and Shrubs,' London, 1874-5, 8vo.
- 'Frank Allerton. An Autobiography,' 3 vols. London, 1878, 8vo.
- 'Free Trade and English Commerce,' 2nd edit. London , 8vo; answered by F. J. B. Hooper, 1880; and in 'Half-a-pair of Scissors; or what is our (so-called) Free Trade?' (anon.), Manchester, 1885.
- 'The Western Farmer of America,' London, 1880, 8vo, reprinted 1886; replied to by T. H. Dudley and J. W. Hinton.
- 'History of the Free Trade Movement in England,' London, 1881, 8vo, translated into French by H. Gravez, Paris, 1885, 8vo.
- 'Pleas for Protection examined,' London, 1882, 8vo; reprinted 1888.
- ' Wealth-Creation,' London, 1882, 8vo.
- 'The Suez Canal Question,' 1883, 8vo.
- 'Trade Depression, recent and present' , 8vo.
- 'On the Displacement of Labour and Capital,' 1886, 8vo.
[Private information; Times, 4 April 1888, p. 10; Athenæum, 7 April 1888, p. 437; Annual Register, 1888, Chron. p. 141; Appleton's Annual Cycl. 1888, p. 665.]