By Richard L. Chambers

A compilation drawn from over 500 years of English language accounting literature reflecting a life of scholarly enquiry, this publication contains over 5000 quotations of among 1-20 traces in size. The e-book goals to offer an historic standpoint in addition to an up to date review of what accounting and accountants have been, are and do, and is meant either as a reference ebook and a learn software. Its variety extends from basic curiosity to the complicated, overlaying ideas, practices and criteria, expert and educational reviews, and the social and logical foundations of accounting; it additionally attracts at the paintings of students in different fields that experience a few concerning accounting paintings and suggestion.

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Let us boldly raise the question whether accounting, the late claimant for recognition as a profession, is not entitled to some respect, or must it consort with crystal-gazing, sociology, chiropractic, pedagogy and palm-reading. Hatfield, 1924, 241, 243 More men have led themselves blindly into the bankruptcy court by their system of bookkeeping than any one other thing, [per District Judge Dickinson] Ellett v Klein, 1927 nowhere has the rational element entered more strongly into economic activity than through accountancy - it is a necessary condition of the separation of the firm from the individuals of which it consists and therefore of the growth of large joint stock businesses - and the slow spread of scientific bookkeeping was one of the chief causes of the persistence of traditional and unbusinesslike methods of ordering affairs throughout the Middle Ages.

Instead of being fighting men, as in days of old, we're all in business; our high priests are called accountants. They too have a holy day - the thirty-first of December - on which we're supposed to confess. In olden times, the princes would go to confession because it was the thing to do, whether they believed or not. Today the world demands balance sheets, profit and loss statements once a year. But if you're working on great ideas [attr to Ivar Kreuger, cl920, in an historical novel] Gififord, 1978, 286 The contempt for accounting is not limited to university circles, but is well-nigh universal.

Double entry bookkeeping is a pure analysis of the space of values, referred to a coordinate system, of which the origin is "the firm". Spengler, (1917)/1946, 11:490 "To succeed," Kreuger went on . . , "one must understand our times and the people populating them. This is the key. In the end, you depend on little men, your accountants . . Every period in history has its own gods, its own high priests, its own holy days. It's been true of politics, religion and war. Now it's true of economics.

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