Born in Liverpool, William Jevons studied chemistry in London before arriving in Sydney at the age of 19 to work as an assayer at the Sydney Mint. A dispute over how a railway was to be funded got him interested in economics. After five years in Australia he returned to England and continued his formal education. He began teaching economics and eventually became professor of economics at University College, London. Jevons made major contributions to marginal theory, the theory that the satisfaction derived from consumption lessens the more you consume.
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