An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals HTML version

Author's Advertisement
Most of the principles, and reasonings, contained in this volume,
[Footnote: Volume II. of the posthumous edition of Hume's works published in 1777 and
containing, besides the present ENQUIRY, A DISSERTATION ON THE PASSIONS,
latter treatise has already appeared in The Religion of Science Library (NO. 45)]
were published in a work in three volumes, called A TREATISE OF HUMAN NATURE:
A work which the Author had projected before he left College, and which he wrote and
published not long after. But not finding it successful, he was sensible of his error in
going to the press too early, and he cast the whole anew in the following pieces, where
some negligences in his former reasoning and more in the expression, are, he hopes,
corrected. Yet several writers who have honoured the Author's Philosophy with answers,
have taken care to direct all their batteries against that juvenile work, which the author
never acknowledged, and have affected to triumph in any advantages, which, they
imagined, they had obtained over it: A practice very contrary to all rules of candour and
fair-dealing, and a strong instance of those polemical artifices which a bigotted zeal
thinks itself authorized to employ. Henceforth, the Author desires, that the following
Pieces may alone be regarded as containing his philosophical sentiments and principles.