…is from page 572 of Paul Johnson’s 1991 book, The Birth of the Modern: World Society 1815-1830, discussing the freedom that caused and accompanied the birth of the modern world:
Such clever and enterprising men came [from all over Europe in the early 19th century] to the British Isles because of the opportunities provided by its great wealth and, still more, by its free economic climate. The English universities might be comatose and the government indifferent to industry, but the law left the entrepreneur and the self-advancing artisan free to pursue their genius….
That was not the only advantage of the free climate. In early industrial Britain, qualifications, degrees, certificates, professional rules and trade conventions were swept aside by masters and men who were anxious to get on.
[Hat tip Don Boudreaux at Cafe Hayek]