Insurance, or assurance, is a contract or agreement by which one or more particulars, called insurers, assurers, or underwriters, take on them the risque of the value of the things insured, in consideration of a premium paid by the assured, and by this means commodiously divide the hazard of every adventure, to the great benefit of trade, and the ease and advantage of every one concerned therein … Insurances give fresh vigour to the active principles of universal commerce, and great security to the fortunes of private people; for by dividing amongst many that loss, which would ruin an individual, it is made to fall light and easy on the whole society. The risk likewise, of importation and exportation being thereby diminished, men will more easily be induced to engage in extensive commercial connections, to take a share in important concerns, and to unite in hazardous enterprizes, since a failure in the object will not be attended with those dreadful consequences to them and their families, which must be the case in countries where insurances are unknown.

Joseph Chitty
Joseph Chitty
12 March 1775 – 17 February 1841
Lex Mercatoria, An historical deduction of commerce from its origin, 1813.