David Hume

Literary Birthday – 7 May – David Hume

David Hume was born 7 May 1711, and died 25 August 1776.

The Top 10 Philosophical David Hume Quotes

  1. Beauty is no quality in things themselves: It exists merely in the mind which contemplates them; and each mind perceives a different beauty.
  2. But the life of a man is of no greater importance to the universe than that of an oyster.
  3. Nothing is more surprising to those who consider human affairs with a philosophical eye, than to see the easiness with which the many are governed by the few, and to observe the implicit submission with which men resign their own sentiments and passions to those of their rulers.
  4. That the sun will not rise tomorrow is no less intelligible a proposition, and implies no more contradiction, than the affirmation, that it will rise.
  5. Art may make a suit of clothes; but nature must produce a man.
  6. The corruption of the best things gives rise to the worst.
  7. A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence.
  8. I have written on all sorts of subjects… yet I have no enemies; except indeed all the Whigs, all the Tories, and all the Christians.
  9. Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous.
  10. Though there be no such thing as chance in the world; our ignorance of the real cause of any event has the same influence on the understanding, and begets a like species of belief or opinion.

David Hume was a Scottish philosopher, historian, economist, and essayist, who is known for his influential system of philosophical empiricism, scepticism, and naturalism. He is often called the most important philosopher ever to write in English. He was one of the last of the great triumvirate of ‘British empiricists’. Hume’s major philosophical works — A Treatise of Human Nature (1739-1740), the Enquiries concerning Human Understanding (1748) and concerning the Principles of Morals (1751), as well as the posthumously published Dialogues concerning Natural Religion (1779) — remain widely and deeply influential.

Source for Image


Allan Ramsay, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 26th April 2013