Biography of David Hume

David Hume is an extraordinary and extremely influential philosopher.

Beginning of life

David Hume, born David Home, was born on May 7, 1711 in Edinburgh. His parents – Joseph Home and Catherine Falconer rented land there. His father was a lawyer.

Due to the fact that many Englishmen had problems with the perception of his name, when it was pronounced with a Scottish accent, in 1734 David changed his name from Home to Hume. At the age of 12 he began his studies at Edinburgh University. At first he wanted to connect his life with the law, but then turned his attention to philosophy. Hume never took his teachers seriously, because he believed that teachers can not teach him much. He opened a new page in philosophy, because of which he decided to devote philosophy to his whole life. Because of this Hume became a hermit and spent 10 years in solitude, doing reading and writing. He was so keen on his business that he almost had a nervous breakdown, after which

he decided to devote more time to active life, which in his opinion should have a good effect on his further education.


Hume could choose one of two ways to develop his career – either to become a mentor to people, or to do business. Having been in the role of merchant, he moved to La Flèche, Anjou, France. There he had numerous skirmishes with the Jesuits from the College of La Flesh. In the same place, he spent most of his savings during the writing of the Treatise on Human Nature. Hume finished his writing when he was 26 years old. Despite the fact that at the moment his book is highly regarded and considered one of his most authoritative works, some British critics of the time did not take the treatise favorably.

In 1744 Hume published his “Moral and political essays.” After the publication, Hume claimed a place in the department of the teaching of gaseous bodies and moral philosophy at the University of Edinburgh. But due to the fact that he was considered an atheist, the place went to William Cleghorn.

In 1745, when the Yakowic rebellion broke out, Hume was

a teacher of the Marquise Anandale, whose official name was “crazy,” but he soon resigned from this post because of the conflict between them. After the incident, Hume began work on his famous work entitled “The History of England.” Writing work took 15 years, and the work itself contained about a million words. The work was published in six volumes from 1754 to 1762. The work related to the Canongate Theater, as well as to Lord Monboddo and other representatives of the Scottish Enlightenment of Edinburgh.

Hume worked as a secretary for Lieutenant-General St. Claire for three years beginning in 1746. During these three years he wrote philosophical essays on the understanding of man, which were subsequently published with the title “Investigating Human Understanding.” This publication became much more famous than his treatise and brought Hume rave reviews.

Yuma was accused of heresy, but received protection from his young friend-cleric. His friend claimed that, being an atheist, Hume was not under the influence of the church. But despite these arguments, he still could not take his place at the Department of Philosophy at the University of Glasgow. In 1752, after returning from Edinburgh, he wrote the book “My Own Life”, which served as an impetus to continue his work on the “History of England”. In the literature Hume is recognized as an outstanding historian; in his book “The History of England” tells of the events since the invasion of Julius Caesar and before the revolution of 1688. At that time, this book became the best-selling.

End of life and death

Hume was the secretary of Lord Hurtford in Paris from 1763 to 1765.

Hume was familiar, although not getting along, with Jean-Jacques Rousseau.

In 1767, he was appointed Deputy Secretary of State for the Northern Department for a period of only one year. Then, in 1768, he returned to the city where he was born and lived there until his death.

On August 25, 1776, David Hume died of either intestinal cancer or liver cancer at the southwest corner of St. Andrew’s Square, in the New City of Edinburgh. This place now has the address “21 Saint David Street”.

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Biography of David Hume