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Ferguson was a noted figure of the Scottish Enlightenment. His major work, An Essay on the History of Civil Society, offers a natural history of the development of society and examines the role of the citizen in the modern commercial state. Born near the Highlands of Scotland and educated at the University of St. Andrews and at Edinburgh, Ferguson was an ordained minister in the Church of Scotland (Presbyterian). He was later appointed to the chair of natural philosophy at the University of Edinburgh and subsequently was appointed to the chair of moral philosophy. His works include Institutes of Moral Philosophy, The History of the Progress and Termination of the Roman Republic, and Principles of Moral and Political Science.

Preeminently a moralist, and influenced by ...

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