AGAIN we have debate and publicity being generated by some who seek to apply, somewhat simplistically, the ethical standards and judgments of today to events and statements of 200-300 years ago ("University should rename Hume Tower due to his links with slavery", The Herald, July 18). David Hume (1711-1776), philosopher, historian and economist, is a Scot who continues to deserve our respect and admiration. After all, he is viewed by many as the greatest of Scottish philosophers.

His work is also held in high regard abroad. For example, Albert Einstein once wrote that he was inspired by Hume's positivism when working on his theories in relation to relativity. He was also held in high esteem as an individual by many distinguished friends. One of those, Adam Smith, wrote that he judged Hume "as approaching as nearly to the idea of a perfectly wise and virtuous man as perhaps the nature of human frailty will permit".

Who is to be next to be subjected to such attacks? If those behind such judgmental retrospection are seeking for their efforts to be wide-ranging and consistent, they must also include all those British industrialists and business owners in the past (and there are quite a few of them) who made their fortunes largely through the exploitation of their workers.

Ian W Thomson, Lenzie.


YOU report that "climbers and hillwalkers are being urged to help keep Scotland's mountains beautiful by taking their litter home" (" ‘Tak It Hame’ call to fight beauty spot litter", The Herald, July 21). Let's get this straight: it is not climbers and hillwalkers who are leaving the garbage by the roadside or adjacent fields. It is, in the main, day-trippers and overnight campers dispensing with still-hot barbecue trays, bags of rubbish, cheap, pop-up tents that no self-respecting hillwalker would even consider buying, leaving them behind for others to collect.

Maureen McGarry-O'Hanlon, Balloch.


NICE to see that RBS or whatever it's called these days is making healthy profits. Perhaps it might consider opening its branches for a decent period of time. My local branch is open for only 20 hours a week and the queues outside are massive, no matter what time you go at.

Time it and other banks started to provide a decent service. Other businesses are making an effort, why not the banks?

Michael Watson, Glasgow G73.


LEST any readers be puzzled by the perfectly accurate and admirably-succinct definition of a transposing instrument as one that "plays the wrang note" (Letters, July 21), it should be explained that since it does so consistently and therefore predictably, all the composer need do is write the wrong notes for it, and its wrong notes will be absolutely right.

The historical reasons for this delightful idiocy defy brief explanation, and fortunately – as with spelling reform – simplifying matters now would be far too problematical to be thought of.

Robin Dow, Rothesay.


REGARDING recent correspondence on mnemonics in music, my F-in-stave was "Figs", a dietary supplement that was completely unnecessary before lessons with my violin teacher. The ex-Army pipe majors I knew later were the epitome of patience and understanding by comparison.

Gilbert MacKay, Newton Mearns.