It is for them alone to point out what we ought to do… By the principle of utility is meant that principle which approves or disapproves of every action whatsoever according to the tendency it appears to have to augment or diminish the happiness of the party whose interest is in question: I say of every action whatsoever, and therefore not only of every action of a private individual, but of every measure of government.
Biography[ edit ] Early life and education[ edit ] Hume was the second of two sons born to Joseph Home of Ninewellsan advocate, and his wife The Hon. Throughout his life Hume, who never married, spent time occasionally at his family home at Ninewells in Berwickshirewhich had belonged to his family since the sixteenth century.
His finances as a young man were very "slender". His family was not rich, and, as a younger son, he had little patrimony to live on.
He was therefore forced to make a living somehow.
At first, because of his family, he considered a career in lawbut came to have, in his words, "an insurmountable aversion to everything but the pursuits of Philosophy and general Learning; and while [my family] fanceyed I was poring over Voet and VinniusCicero and Virgil were the Authors which I was secretly devouring".
Due to this inspiration, Hume set out to spend a minimum of 10 years reading and writing. He soon came to the verge of a mental breakdownsuffering from what a doctor diagnosed as the "Disease of the Learned".
Hume wrote that it started with a coldness, which he attributed to a "Laziness of Temper", that lasted about nine months. Later, some scurvy spots broke out on his fingers. Hume wrote that he "went under a Course of Bitters and Anti-Hysteric Pills", taken along with a pint of claret every day.
Hume also decided to have a more active life to better continue his learning. Career[ edit ] At 25 years of age, Hume, although of noble ancestry, had no source of income and no learned profession.
Hume described his "love for literary fame" as his "ruling passion"  and judged his two late works, the so-called "first" and "second" enquiries, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding and An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Moralsrespectively, as his greatest literary and philosophical achievements,  asking his contemporaries to judge him on the merits of the later texts alone, rather than the more radical formulations of his early, youthful work, dismissing his philosophical debut as juvenilia: Hume was just 23 years old when he started this work and it is now regarded as one of the most important in the history of Western philosophy.
However, the position was given to William Cleghorn  after Edinburgh ministers petitioned the town council not to appoint Hume because he was seen as an atheist.
However, it was then that Hume started his great historical work The History of England. This took him fifteen years and ran to over a million words. During this time he was also involved with the Canongate Theatre through his friend John Homea preacher.
Often called the First Enquiry, it proved little more successful than the Treatise, perhaps because of the publishing of his short autobiography, My Own Life, which "made friends difficult for the first Enquiry".
It was necessary in the s for his friends to avert a trial against him on the charge of heresy.
However, he "would not have come and could not be forced to attend if he said he was not a member of the Established Church". He had published the Philosophical Essays by this time which were decidedly anti-religious.
Even Adam Smithhis personal friend who had vacated the Glasgow philosophy chair, was against his appointment out of concern public opinion would be against it. In the following year "the Faculty of Advocates chose me their Librarian, an office from which I received little or no emolument, but which gave me the command of a large library".
Once in England, Hume and Rousseau fell out. Here he wrote that he was given "all the secrets of the Kingdom".項目 來源 資料夾 年度 參考類別 作者 標題 次標題 會議名稱 會議地點 出版地區 學術部門 大學 學位 諮詢人 檔案號碼. Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that states that the best action is the one that maximizes utility.
"Utility" is defined in various ways, usually in terms of the well-being of sentient entities. Jeremy Bentham, the founder of utilitarianism, described utility as the sum of all pleasure that results from an action, minus the suffering of anyone involved in the action.
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