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One of his orders for “indecent Books” prompted an unsuccessful move for his dismissal and excommunication from the Kirk.Friends and publishers persuaded him to suppress some of his more controversial writings on religion during his lifetime.
In 1763, Hume accepted a position as private secretary to the British Ambassador to France.
During his three-year stay in Paris, he became Secretary to the Embassy, and eventually its .
In 1748, was a bestseller well into the next century, giving him the financial independence he had long sought.
But even as a librarian, Hume’s reputation as an atheist and sceptic dogged him.
Generally regarded as one of the most important philosophers to write in English, David Hume (1711–1776) was also well known in his own time as an historian and essayist.
A master stylist in any genre, his major philosophical works— (1779)—remain widely and deeply influential.
Although Hume’s more conservative contemporaries denounced his writings as works of scepticism and atheism, his influence is evident in the moral philosophy and economic writings of his close friend Adam Smith.
Kant reported that Hume’s work woke him from his “dogmatic slumbers” and Jeremy Bentham remarked that reading Hume “caused the scales to fall” from his eyes.
As a second son, his inheritance was meager, so he moved to France, where he could live cheaply, and finally settled in La Flèche, a sleepy village in Anjou best known for its Jesuit college where Descartes and Mersenne had studied a century before.
Here he read French and other continental authors, especially Malebranche, Dubos, and Bayle, and occasionally baited the Jesuits with arguments attacking their beliefs.