To discover David Hume's views on women it is necessary to bring together remarks scattered somewhat sparsely throughout his philosophical and historical writings. Although the titles of Hume's major works might suggest that he was describing the understanding and nature of all human beings, both male and female, in none of the works do we find a specific section devoted to an analysis of sexual differences in these two respects. There is a tidy chapter on female morality in A Treatise of Human Nature, but nothing comparable for female nature as such (T, 570–573). This omission does not, however, imply that Hume thought that biological differences had no concomitants in character and understanding. Neither, despite Hume's bantering remark that an essay on a ‘Subject so little to be understood as Women’ would be ‘unintelligible’, does this neglect imply that Hume was uncertain about these attendant differences (L, i, 45). Hume's exclusion of such a section seems to stem only from his desire to stress human uniformity, not from any lack of recognition of human variety. Because of the absence of any systematic treatment of the subject by Hume, it is necessary to proceed cautiously in interpreting his remarks on women. There is a further reason for caution in that Hume offers ‘jests and pleasantries’ as well as more serious comments on this subject; Hume, on occasions, gallantly woos his so-called ‘favourites’, his female readers, and when he does so sincerity is gallantly put aside.