J. M. E. McTaggart

British philosopher (1866-1925)

John McTaggart Ellis McTaggart, commonly John McTaggart or J. M. E. McTaggart (3 September 186618 January 1925) was an idealist metaphysician. For most of his life McTaggart was a fellow and lecturer in philosophy at Trinity College. He was an exponent of the philosophy of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel and among the most notable of the British idealists.


  • The really fundamental aspect of the dialectic is not the tendency of the finite category to negate itself but to complete itself.
    • Studies in the Hegelian Dialectic (1896), p. 10.
  • Religion has always, I think, implied a belief in some fundamental harmony, some sort of reconciliation between the claims of our own nature and the facts of the universe.
    • Some Dogmas of Religion (1906), p. 9.
  • On the determinist hypothesis an omnipotent God could have prevented all sin by creating us with better natures and in more favourable surroundings. … Hence we should not be responsible for our sins to God.
    • Some Dogmas of Religion (1906), p. 165.