The advantages found in history seem to be of three kinds, as it amuses the fancy, as it improves the understanding, and as it strengthens virtue.

David Hume

David Hume

Profession: Philosopher
Nationality: Scottish

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Art may make a suit of clothes but nature must produce a man.

There is a very remarkable inclination in human nature to bestow on external objects the same emotions which it observes in itself, and to find every where those ideas which are most present to it.

The Christian religion not only was at first attended with miracles, but even at this day cannot be believed by any reasonable person without one.

Eloquence, at its highest pitch, leaves little room for reason or reflection, but addresses itself entirely to the desires and affections, captivating the willing hearers, and subduing their understanding.

Beauty, whether moral or natural, is felt, more properly than perceived.

A man acquainted with history may, in some respect, be said to have lived from the beginning of the world, and to have been making continual additions to his stock of knowledge in every century.

Every wise, just, and mild government, by rendering the condition of its subjects easy and secure, will always abound most in people, as well as in commodities and riches.

Scholastic learning and polemical divinity retarded the growth of all true knowledge.

No advantages in this world are pure and unmixed.

This avidity alone, of acquiring goods and possessions for ourselves and our nearest friends, is insatiable, perpetual, universal, and directly destructive of society.

To hate, to love, to think, to feel, to see; all this is nothing but to perceive.

Men are much oftener thrown on their knees by the melancholy than by the agreeable passions.

Heaven and hell suppose two distinct species of men, the good and the bad. But the greatest part of mankind float betwixt vice and virtue.

Philosophy would render us entirely Pyrrhonian, were not nature too strong for it.