See his letters, ed. by H. E. Gerber (1968); biographies by S. L. Mitchell (1916), J. Hone (1936, repr. 1973), and A. Frazier (2000); studies by J. Egleson (1973), R. A. Cave (1978), J. E. Dunleavy, ed. (1983), and J. Egleson, ed. (1983).
(born Nov. 4, 1873, London, Eng.—died Oct. 24, 1958, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire) British philosopher, one of the founders of analytic philosophy. While a fellow at the University of Cambridge (1898–1904), he published two influential papers, “The Nature of Judgment” (1899) and “The Refutation of Idealism” (1903), that did much to break the hold of absolute idealism on British philosophy. Also published during this period was his major ethical work, Principia Ethica (1903), in which he argued that “good” is a simple and unanalyzable quality that is knowable by direct apprehension. His intuitionism was the dominant metaethical position in Britain for the next 30 years, and it exerted considerable influence within the Bloomsbury group of artists and intellectuals. In epistemology, Moore is remembered for his “common sense” philosophy, according to which human beings know to be true many propositions about themselves and the world that are inconsistent with idealist and skeptical doctrines (e.g., “The Earth has existed for many years”). His general position was that, because no argument for idealism or skepticism is as certain as the commonsense view, idealism and skepticism can be rejected out of hand. He was professor of philosophy at Cambridge from 1925 to 1939. From 1921 to 1947 he edited the journal Mind.
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