Popular for his work on the nature of meaning, which greatly influenced semantics, and his theory of implicature.
He studied at Corpus Christi College, followed by a short teaching stint at Rossall School. He eventually relocated to the United States in 1967 to teach at the University of California, Berkeley.
He espoused the Cooperative Principle and the Maxims of Conversation in his development of conversational implicature.
He had two children with his wife. The family settled in Beverly Hills.
He frequently lectured on William James.