1723-1816, Scottish philosopher and
historian. He was professor of philosophy at the Univ. of Edinburgh
(1759-85). His Essay on the History of Civil Society (1767)
criticized earlier theories of a state of nature; it was an important
contribution to intellectual history and influenced Hegel. In his Principles
of Moral and Political Science (1792), Ferguson advanced the principle
of perfection and attempted to reconcile self-interest and universal
See David Kettler, The Social and Political Thought of Adam Ferguson
(1965); Malcolm Jack, Corruption and Progress: The 18th-Century Debate
Click here to read his
Essay on the History of Civil Society"
Biographical Sketch of Adam
Fergusson, LL.D., F.R.S.E.
Professor of Moral Philosophy in the University of Edinburgh By John Small,
M.A. (1864) (pdf)