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A Treatise of Human Nature
Available in PDF, epub, and Kindle ebook, or read online. This book has 400 pages in the PDF version, and was originally published in 1739-1740.
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A Treatise of Human Nature is a book by philosopher David Hume, first published in 1739. It is considered as his most important work, as well as generally one of the most influential works of philosophy. Seeking to investigate human psychology and aiming to discover the extent and force of human understanding, Hume argues that passion, and not reason, is the key to human behaviour; that our beliefs regarding cause and effect cannot be justified by reason and in fact is the result of habit and custom. Later, Hume reworked 'A Treatise of Human Nature' into two books, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding and An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals, commenting that there were 'negligences in his former reasoning'.
The book is split into 3 'books': Book One: Of the Understanding - which includes subjects such as: the origin of ideas, space and time, knowledge and probability, and, scepticism. Book Two: Of the Passions - which includes subjects such as: pride and humility, love and hatred, and, will and direct passions. Book Three: Of Morals - which includes subjects such as: virtue and vice, and, justice and injustice.
Quotes from 'A Treatise of Human Nature':
"All the perceptions of the human mind resolve themselves into two distinct kinds, which I shall call Impressions and Ideas."
"But beauty of all kinds gives us a peculiar delight and satisfaction."
"Every thing belonging to a vain man is the best that is any where to be found."
"The praises of others never give us much pleasure, unless they concur with our own opinion."
"Whereas in esteem or respect, love makes a more considerable ingredient than humility."
"There is no quality in human nature, which causes more fatal errors in our conduct, than that which leads us to prefer whatever is present to the distant and remote, and makes us desire objects more according to their situation than their intrinsic value."
"'Tis contrary to the interest of civil society, that men shou'd have an entire liberty of indulging their appetites in venereal enjoyment"
Word count: 220,234.
Artwork used for book cover: Sir William Chambers; Joseph Wilton; Sir Joshua Reynolds, by John Francis Rigaud.
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