David Hume, 1711 - 1776

“Nothing appears more surprizing to those, who consider human affairs with a philosophical eye, than the easiness with which the many are governed by the few; and the implicit submission, with which men resign their own sentiments and passions to those of their rulers. When we enquire by what means this wonder is effected, we shall find, that, as Force is always on the side of the governed, the governors have nothing to support them but opinion. It is therefore, on opinion only that government is founded; and this maxim extends to the most despotic and most military governments, as well as to the most free and most popular.”

–“Of the First Principles of Government”


In his autobiography written near the end of his life, David Hume describes himself as a “man of mild disposition, of command of temper, of an open, social, and cheerful humour, capable of attachment, but little susceptible of enmity, and of great moderation in all my passions.” [Read More]


In the introduction to his Treatise of Human Nature, David Hume (1711-1776) describes the intellectual scene before him as a “noise and clamour” in which every trivial question was debated, but nothing important ever settled. Hence arose, “a common prejudice against metaphysical reasonings of all kinds, even among those, who profess themselves scholars.” [Read More]

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