David Hume Quotes

A collection of quotes by David Hume.

David Hume (1711-1776) was a Scottish philosopher, historian, economist, and essayist, known for his influential contributions to empiricism and skepticism during the Enlightenment era. Born into a modest merchant family in Edinburgh, Scotland, Hume's early education was conducted at home until he enrolled in the University of Edinburgh at the age of 11. However, he ultimately abandoned his pursuit of a degree to focus on reading and independent study.

Hume's philosophical ideas challenged prevailing notions about human knowledge and perception. His major work, "A Treatise of Human Nature," published in three volumes between 1739 and 1740, explored the limitations of human understanding and argued that knowledge of the world can only be gained through experience. Hume's theory of causation and skepticism towards religious beliefs also made him a controversial figure during his time.

Besides his philosophical contributions, Hume also made significant contributions to the fields of history and economics. His "History of England," a six-volume work published between 1754 and 1762, provided a comprehensive account of British history. Hume's economic ideas focused on the importance of commerce and free trade, prefiguring later theories of classical economics.

Despite facing criticism during his lifetime, Hume's ideas had a lasting impact on subsequent philosophers and thinkers. His emphasis on empiricism and skepticism helped shape the development of Western philosophical thought, leaving a legacy that continues to be influential to this day. Hume died in Edinburgh in 1776, leaving behind a rich body of work that continues to be studied and debated.