Pigou, Arthur Cecil

Pigou, Arthur Cecil

Pigou, Arthur Cecil, 1877-1959, British economist, grad. King's College, Cambridge. He was a lecturer at University College, London, and at Cambridge. He was professor of political economy at Cambridge from 1908 to 1943. He served as a member of the committee on currency and foreign exchange (1918) and of the royal commission on income tax (1919). He was a leading exponent of the theory that economic waste due to unemployment, poor health, and poor housing is a responsibility of society, which should bear the costs. Among his many works are Wealth and Welfare (1912), The Economics of Welfare (1920), The Political Economy of War (1921; new ed. 1941), The Theory of Unemployment (1933), Socialism versus Capitalism (1937), and Income: An Introduction to Economics (1946).
Pigou is an English surname of Hugenot derivation.

The Pigou family originated from Amiens in France. The name was related to pique or pike, and the Pigou arms consist of three pike heads. Two sons of Lawrence Pigou of Amiens – Jacques and John - fled from persecution in France and settled with their families in England in about 1685. All branches of the Pigou family became involved in trade with India.

Family of Jacques Pigou

The descendents of Jacques died out but there were two notable members of this family. The Gentleman’s Magazine (January 1792) reprinted the letter of Captain Peter Pigou (1732-1783) describing his adventures in conveying a huge hydraulic organ from Madras to Aurengabad, for a speculative sale to the Nizam.

Thomas Pigou (1765-1796), the son of Peter Pigou was an officer in the British East India Company and a close friend of Francis Light. He succeeded Light as governor of Penang

Family of John Pigou

John’s grandson Anselm Frederick Pigou (1683-1749) was a successful merchant with dealings in America. His son Frederick Pigou (1711-1792) was a Director of the East India Company, and also had connections with the tea trade to America. He was also co-owner of the gunpowder factory at Dartford, Kent. Subsequent generations followed these threads, being typically Artillery officers and serving in the Indian Army. All existing members of the Pigou family descend from Frederick. Many have emigrated to Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The Pigou vineyards are near Marlborough, New Zealand

Pigou family members

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