<biography, history of philosophy> English moral philosopher (1699-1745). Gay's Dissertation concerning the Fundamental Principle of Virtue or Morality (1731) provided an early statement of the utilitarian theory. The greatest happiness principle, he supposed, represents a middle ground between the egoism of Hobbes and Hutcheson's moral sense theory. Recommended Reading: D. D. Raphael, British Moralists (Hackett, 1990).
[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]
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