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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

NUMBER: 1550
AUTHOR: Arthur Young (1741–1820)
QUOTATION: Give a man the secure possession of a bleak rock, and he will turn it into a garden; give him a nine years lease of a garden, and he will convert it into a desert…. The magic of PROPERTY turns sand to gold.
ATTRIBUTION: ARTHUR YOUNG, journal entries for July 30 and November 7, 1787, Travels…, 2d ed., vol. 1, pp. 51, 88 (1794, reprinted 1970).
SUBJECTS: Property