Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “A Treatise of Human Nature” as Want to Read:
A Treatise of Human Nature
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

A Treatise of Human Nature (A Treatise of Human Nature #1-3)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  8,422 Ratings  ·  94 Reviews
This is a pre-1923 historical reproduction that was curated for quality. Quality assurance was conducted on each of these books in an attempt to remove books with imperfections introduced by the digitization process. Though we have made best efforts - the books may have occasional errors that do not impede the reading experience. We believe this work is culturally importan ...more
Hardcover, Large Print, 632 pages
Published August 18th 2008 by BiblioLife (first published 1740)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about A Treatise of Human Nature, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Felix Montpelier the treatise is made up of three "books", each of the latter two building on what came before. you'll get the most out of it if you start with #1.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jun 15, 2007 Darren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone, Philosophy Buffs
Shelves: alreadyread
"I was awoken from my dogmatic slumber." -Kant, on reading Hume.

In my opinion, this is probably one of the most thoroughly logical and most disturbing books ever written. Hume's use of reason completely dissects that habituation that we call "intuition", and moreover, shows how inductive reasoning is completely without merit. Science goes out the window, and the prospect of having any knowledge of the world leaves with it. The resulting nihilism will send chills down your spine. This is why ever
Fuck! Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck.

Thanks a lot, man! You and your fancy book just had to go and wake Immanuel Kant from his "dogmatic slumber", didn't you? And every single fucking time I pick up a philosophical tome like Critique of Pure Reason I have to be reminded of how lazy I am for not thoroughly reading through all of the British empiricists. Don't get me wrong, from what I've read of yours, you seem like a very precise philosopher, but now I have to read you with scorn. Look at what yo
Duffy Pratt
Oct 07, 2013 Duffy Pratt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
I just wrote a long review of this book, and Goodreads or the internet ate it. Grrrr... Here are the high points of that review.

Three years to read this. Of that, almost the full time was stuck on the first two parts of the second book, which seemed both dull and pointless. It ended up that it was just dull, but necessary to understand his ideas on morality.

First book - Understanding. It blows up the idea that there's a foundation in reason for induction, causation, the persistence of objects, a
Dec 07, 2008 eesenor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hume continues the tradition of Locke and Berkeley, by demonstrating that causal connections are only in the mind of the perceiver, not actually in the world of perceived events.
Jun 25, 2012 Yann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Il y a une remarquable unité dans ces trois ouvrages de Hume, sur la nature humaine, le premier sur la connaissance, le second sur les passions, et le troisième sur la morale. On ne saurait pas aborder ces difficiles questions de morale sans bien s'entendre préalablement sur le sens des mots, sans quoi on courrait le risque de se laisser abuser par eux, et de se payer de belles formules qui nous plaisent, car notre imagination complète le sens qu'il n'y trouve pas par celui qui nous agrée. Cette ...more
Viji Sarath (Bookish endeavors)
Impressions and ideas.
Support for Locke's rejection of the concept of substance.
Support for Berkeley's rejection of abstract idea.
These are the primary topics this essay deals with. The language is pretty straightforward. This seemed much more understandable than the notes we used to receive in class. Hume's clarity of presentation is really admirable,it's not something that every philosopher possess. Worth a second read because of the relation of the concepts discussed in this book with many
Sep 15, 2015 Miles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
David Hume’s A Treatise of Human Nature is not a breezy book. From the first page, it plunged me into a fervid mode of double-layered analysis in which my struggle to comprehend the text was mirrored by efforts to track my personal reactions to whatever content I was able to wrest from it. Early on, my attempts felt futile––understanding occluded by my intellectual limitations and relative lack of outside support. My experience improved as I pressed on, however. Slowly, mysteriously, sentences a ...more
David Hume is pretty easy to like. Despite the reputation built up by new atheists who seem to have only really read his "On Miracles", Hume is as clear and un-polemical as it comes. In just his writing alone there's a sober down to business mindset colored by nothing but the desire to express pure thought. In some ways I can see why that might make it seem unapproachable, but in reality he's one of the more easier to read philosophers you can come across if you'll excuse some of the quirks of 1 ...more
Andrew Hunt
Dec 03, 2012 Andrew Hunt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Clear thinkers
Recommended to Andrew by: Immanuel Kant
Shelves: philosophy
Trenchant and profound. I wouldn't recommend the Barnes & Noble edition, which I picked up without knowing that it contained a few potentially misleading features (inexplicably, the preface to the Abstract which Hume later published is included and the Abstract itself left out).

It's good to read philosophy which, if it is sometimes obscure (though Hume very rarely is truly difficult), is so because the thoughts which it expresses are worth thinking. Certain philosophical writers of the late
Cora D
Sep 07, 2016 Cora D rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: academic-work
¿cómo pensamos? ¿cómo sentimos? uno de los trabajos magistrales del pensamiento de la humanidad. Algunas de sus afirmaciones han sido probadas por la ciencia contemporánea pero quizá lo más relevante es su propuesta sobre la empatía.

¿Nos tomamos un café y lo conversamos?
Sep 22, 2015 Simon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hume's radicalism does not stop at critiquing long-standing philosophical notions of causality, what is external to us, substance, self and God; in a profoundly anti-Cartesian moment, he attacks those who uncritically assert that animals cannot reason nor express the 'passions' of love/hatred and pride/humility...

He makes clear at the outset of the section on animal reasoning that those who fail to realize this obvious quality are 'stupid and ignorant.' Thus, '(a) bird, that chooses with such c
"I am first affrighted and confounded with that forelorn solitude, in which I am plac'd in my philosophy, and fancy myself some strange uncouth monster, who not being able to mingle and unite in society, has been expell'd all human commerce, and left utterly abandon'd and disconsolate. Fain wou'd I run into the crowd for shelter and warmth; but cannot prevail with myself to mix with such deformity. I call upon others to join me, in order to make a company apart; but no one will hearken to me. Ev ...more
Agnostic philosopher. Great book.
"Had i said,that two ideas of the same object can only be different by their different feeling.I shou'd have been nearer the truth."
May 18, 2013 JP rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For Mr. Hume, everything begins with perception. Through memory perception drives what we feel and what we can know. These in turn provide the elements for human nature, morality, society, and individual behavior. In short, epistemology is driven by impression. Reason cannot give rise to an idea.
Micah Adams
Aug 29, 2007 Micah Adams rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who need to learn how to write well
Yes, yes, yes and yes.
If you find yourself blundering through writing assignments or failing to express yourself in a clear and concise manner, pick up this volume. It is a treatise of perspicacity as well as human nature. I long to be as succinct as David Hume.
Erik Graff
May 25, 2011 Erik Graff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hume fans
Recommended to Erik by: a professor
Shelves: philosophy
This was read along with Hume's Treatise of Human Nature for one of my first classes in Loyola University Chicago, "The History of Classical Modern Philosophy".
Jun 12, 2008 Brandon is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I got this brand new for a dollar. Hopefully Hume will awaken me from my dogmatic slumber as well.
Alex Lee
Sep 17, 2015 Alex Lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, philosophy
Much simpler shorter and less expansive than An Enquiry into Human Understanding but all the same, intensely interesting.

Karatani is correct, for Hume all knowledge is synthesis save for math, and counting, which Hume doesn't seem to be able to account for at all -- so he claims such a thing is innate. Indeed, we can grasp that such an ability (counting) and spacial-motoral skills seem to be bred into us, as innate mental structures. Still, Kant in this one area is more radical than Hume, claimi
Jan 25, 2014 Kei rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very thorough and sincere work regarding to the whole aspects of Human Nature. To be honest, this was not a book for fun reading at all except for some sections that deal with the Origin of Government, which was more than fun for me to read through partly because of my personal interest and partly due to the authort's sharp and logical presentation of his arguments.

As for the edition, this seemingly gives nothing but the original contents, which include brief Advertisement, Introduction, and A
Jordan Forster
There are many philosophers who remain of interest to students long after they have ceased to contemplate all things philosophical. For most the interest stems from the importance of the philosopher as part of the study of the history of philosophy. Few, however, retain an enduring relevance for their response to the philosophical problems they squared up to. David Hume is one of these few. Written in 1739, when Hume was aged a mere 28, the Treatise remains today one of the most important texts ...more
J'ai été assez surpris par le premier tome du traité de la nature humaine de Hume, philosophe anglais du XVIIIème siècle. Le ton annoncé dès le début : prendre le contre pied de cette manière lente et embarrassée de faire la philosophie - c'est à dire la manière de John Locke, l'homme du siècle dernier, celui qui avait fait d'Arouet le poète, Voltaire le philosophe - pour y substituer un pas plus rapide et assuré. Effectivement, l'argumentaire varié et coloré employé par Hume est plus proche de ...more
Bob Nichols
Hume's "Treatise" is divided into three books that cover understanding, passions and morals. This review is on Book II, "Of the Passions." *[Review of Book III added below, November, 2013] At first (actually, third) read, this book is a mess, but the book's meaning gains traction when viewed within Hume's overall philosophical system.

In Hume's system, the world comes at the self through the senses and ideas flow from them (impressions). As we are not just knowing beings, where do passions fit w
May 10, 2014 Kenneth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
"The Treatise on Human Nature" is enjoyable to read for many reasons. The arguments from the “Essay on Human Understanding” here have been provided more extensive treatment. Moreover, the full depth of Hume’s moral philosophy plus his insights into human anthropology here have been provided clear outlines presented in an organized manner. The tome is lengthy, but readable.

In sum, Hume founded his vision of the human person upon the epistemology of British empiricism. One need not necessarily ag
Michael Blain
Dec 02, 2012 Michael Blain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
After having only read snippets of David Hume throughout my exploration of philosophy I felt compelled to read this work in its entirety, and it was impeccably brilliant far beyond my assumptions. To have written this book in his early twenties is almost incomprehensible, because hundreds of years later these words and ideas still are easily applicable to deep thought and conscious perception of the world we live in. I value Descartes for his acknowledgement of the pineal gland and its importanc ...more
Ginan Aulia Rahman
Buku yang akan membuat kamu mengenal caramu (dan orang lain) berpikir, jatuh cinta, dan bertindak. Serap perspektif Hume mengenai psikologis manusia lalu aplikasikan ke marketing, PDKT, dan mempersuasi publik. Dijamin sukses!

Manusia mengetahui lewat pengalaman. Tidak semua pengalaman akan menempel di kepala dan mempengaruhi hati dan perbuatannya. Hanya pengalaman yang berkesan yang bisa melakukan itu semua. Kalau mau diingat orang, buatlah dia terkesan.

John Doe
Jul 24, 2016 John Doe is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Hume started this book when he was sixteen years old. He was unhappy with how he said certain things, and he republished it in parts.

Hume writes about cause and effect. He says reason is and ought to be a slave of the passions. And views justice as an artificial virtue. I want to know more about what it means for justice to be an artificial virtue. It has something to do with convention. Also, I want to know more about how reason is supposed to be a slave to the sounds pretty inter
Oct 27, 2014 Vlad rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How can one not love David "Betwixt" Hume:

"We find by experience, that two bodies, which are so placed as to affect the senses in the same manner with two others, that have a certain extent of visible objects interposed betwixt them, are capable of receiving the same extent, without any sensible impulse or penetration, and without any change on that angle, under which they appear to the senses."

Excellent lectures on Hume:
Oct 02, 2016 Jakub rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Unfortunatelly the ability to judge a book in the context of its time period isn't something I can brag about. That said, "Enquiry..." is much better (contrary to Russell's opinion) - doesn't have so much scholastic thinking (yes, still).

It seems the importance of philosophy for me is gradually diminishing. :/
William Schram
This book is a technical treatise on Human Nature. It is split up into three books which is further split into parts and sections. Using reason as his guide, Hume builds up human nature and quells any ideas of a divinely inspired government and stuff like that.

His main idea is probably that Causation is not necessarily the reason for some action, though since this book is so massive I can't really sum it up now without going point to point and wasting my time.

This book was originally published b
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Principles of Human Knowledge & Three Dialogues Between Hylas and Philonous
  • An Essay Concerning Human Understanding
  • Philosophical Essays
  • Critique of Practical Reason (Texts in the History of Philosophy)
  • Word and Object
  • Theological-Political Treatise
  • A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive: Being a Connected View of the Principles of Evidence and the Methods of Scientific Investigation
  • Parmenides (Philosophical Library)
  • Principia Ethica (Philosophical Classics)
  • Philosophical Investigations
  • The Concept of Mind
  • Ethics: Inventing Right and Wrong
  • Language, Truth, and Logic
  • The Theory of Moral Sentiments
  • The Philosophy of Language
  • Discourse on the Origin of Inequality
David Hume (/ˈhjuːm/; 7 May 1711 NS (26 April 1711 OS) – 25 August 1776) was a Scottish historian, philosopher, economist, diplomat and essayist known today especially for his radical philosophical empiricism and scepticism.

In light of Hume's central role in the Scottish Enlightenment, and in the history of Western philosophy, Bryan Magee judged him as a philosopher "widely regarded as the greates
More about David Hume...

Other Books in the Series

A Treatise of Human Nature (5 books)
  • A Treatise on Human Nature 1
  • Of The Delicacy of Taste and Passion
  • A Treatise of Human Nature, Book 3: Of Morals (With Active Table of Contents)
  • A Treatise on Human Nature: Vol. 2 (Everyman's Library #549)

Share This Book

“Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous.” 282 likes
“Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office than to serve and obey them.” 29 likes
More quotes…