Portal:Metaphysics/Selected biography/2

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George Berkeley by John Smibert.jpg

George Berkeley /ˈbɑːrkli/ (12 March 1685 – 14 January 1753), also known as Bishop Berkeley, was a philosopher whose primary achievement was the advancement of a theory he called "immaterialism" (later referred to as "subjective idealism" by others). This theory contends that individuals can only directly know sensations and ideas of objects, not abstractions such as "matter." The theory also contends that ideas are dependent upon being perceived by minds for their very existence, a belief that became immortalized in the dictum, "Esse est percipi" ("To be is to be perceived"). His most widely-read works are A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge (1710) and Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous (1713), in which the characters Philonous and Hylas represent Berkeley himself and his contemporary John Locke. In 1734, he published The Analyst, a critique of the foundations of infinitesimal calculus, which was influential in the development of mathematics.