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The Life of David Hume$
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Ernest C. Mossner

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780199243365

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199243365.001.0001

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Disturbers of the Peace

Disturbers of the Peace

Chapter:
(p.577) Chapter 38 Disturbers of the Peace
Source:
The Life of David Hume
Author(s):

Ernest Campbell Mossner

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199243365.003.0038

It was An Essay on the Nature and Immutability of Truth; in opposition to Sophistry and Scepticism, a work that went through five editions between its first appearance in 1770 and the death of David Hume in 1776, which was chiefly responsible for disturbing the philosopher's tranquillity. The author, James Beattie, was a follower of the ‘Common Sense Philosophy’ that had been instituted in Scotland in 1764 by Thomas Reid, and which two years later had been applied by James Oswald in An Appeal to Common Sense in Behalf of Religion. Hume had exchanged amicable letters with Reid, but had completely ignored Oswald. Beattie was not to be ignored, however, for, unlike Hume's other ‘friendly Adversaries’ at Aberdeen, who treated the aging philosopher with the respect due a serious thinker, it was Beattie's intention to arouse the emotional prejudices of his readers.

Keywords:   Essay, Nature, Sophistry, Scepticism, David Hume, James Beattie, Common Sense Philosophy, Scotland, Thomas Reid, James Oswald

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