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Smith, Adam

Born: 1723 AD
Died: 1790 AD
2 (40%) 7 votes

1723 – He was born on the 5th day of June of this year in Kirkcadly, Scotland. At around the age of four, a band of Gypsies kidnapped him, but he was quickly rescued by his uncle and returned to his mother.


1736 – At the age of 13, Smith entered the University of Glasgow, where he studied moral philosophy under "the never-to-be-forgotten" (as Smith called him) Francis Hutcheson. Here Smith developed his strong passion for liberty, reason, and free speech.


1740 – He was awarded the Snell Exhibition and entered Balliol College, Oxford, but as William Robert Scott has said, "the Oxford of his time gave little if any help towards what was to be his lifework," and he left the university in 1746.


1748 – Smith began delivering public lectures in Edinburgh under the patronage of Lord Kames.


1751 – He was appointed chair of logic at the University of Glasgow.


1753 – He transferred in this year to the Chair of Moral Philosophy, once occupied by his famous teacher, Francis Hutcheson. His lectures covered the fields of ethics, rhetoric, jurisprudence, political economy, and "police and revenue".


1759 – He wrote his first authored treatise “The Theory of Moral Sentiments” in this year.


1762 – The academic senate of the University of Glasgow conferred on Smith the title of Doctor of laws (LL.D.).


1763 – At the end of this year, he attained a money-spinning offer from Charles Townshend (who had been introduced to Smith by David Hume), to tutor his stepson, the young Duke of Buccleuch.


1764 – He subsequently resigned from his professorship and from this year until 1766 traveled with his pupil, mostly in France, where he came to know intellectual leaders such as Turgot, Jean D’Alembert, André Morellet, Helvétius and, in particular, Francois Quesnay, the head of the Physiocratic school whose work he respected greatly.


1776 – This year, he wrote his second treatise “An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations”.


1778 – He was appointed to a post as commissioner of customs in Scotland. He went to live with his mother in Edinburgh.


1783 – This year, he became one of the founding members of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.


1787 – From this year until 1789, he occupied the honorary position of Lord Rector of the University of Glasgow.

1790 – He died at age 67 after a painful illness on the 17th day of July of this year in Edinburgh, Scotland. He was intered in the Canongate Kirkyard.

2 (40%) 7 votes