"I am first affrighted and confounded with that forlorn solitude in which I am placed in my philosophy, and fancy myself some strange uncouth monster, who, not being able to mingle and unite in society, has been expelled all human commerce, and left utterly abandoned and disconsolate."  

From Treatise on Human Understanding - David Hume

Unlike most philosophers, Hume took the opportunity (albeit the rather late and final one of being confined to his deathbed) to write his own autobiography, or what one commentator called 'that curious memoir', entitled THE LIFE OF DAVID HUME, ESQ. WRITTEN BY HIMSELF. He remarks: " I passed through the ordinary course of education with success, and was seized very early with a passion for literature, which has been the ruling passion of my life, and the great source of my enjoyments; my studious disposition, my sobriety, and my industry, gave my family a notion that the law was a proper profession for me: but I found an insurmountable aversion to every thing but the pursuits of philosophy and general learning; and while they fancied I was poring upon Voet and Vinnius, Cicero and Virgil were the authors I was secretly devouring.".  In a very distinctive passage, reminiscent of the Meditations , where Descartes warns of the effects of jettisoning even temporarily all his conventional assumptions, Hume speaks of his restless philosophy, and of the feelings it produces in his mind. Hume explains his aims more generally as to enquire whether anything "can be ascertained in philosophy. It is , he says, not merely "the same system of doubt" as that of Robert Boyle and others (which "merely went to show the uncertainty of the conclusions attending particular species of argument") but "a sweeping argument to show that by the structure of the understanding, the result of all investigations, on all subjects, must ever be doubt."