Evolutionary scientist Richard Dawkins, pictured, was among those who paid tribute to Tony Nicklinson last week.

An emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford, he tweeted: “Tony Nicklinson’s suffering is over, no thanks to our cruel, callous laws. Glad for him.

“Let’s continue his fight for others in the same plight.”

Family solicitor Saimo Chahal, of law firm Bindmans, said: “I would like to say what an extraordinary man Tony was.

“He was gutsy, determined and a fighter. I only wish the outcome of the case could have been different during his lifetime.”

Comedian Richard Herring tweeted: “RIP Tony Nicklinson – though I fully expect the ludicrous legal system to artificially resuscitate you so you can’t defeat them by dying.”

Dr John Troyer, from the University of Bath’s Centre for Death and Society, said many people were able to understand what Mr Nicklinson had gone through ‘because he was so articulate and because his family was so supportive. It is difficult to avoid the arguments he made’.

Professor Penney Lewis, professor of law at the Centre of Medical Law and Ethics at King’s College London, said: “He was directly challenging the law and has a significant role in the history of legal challenges.

“There have been very high-profile (right-to-die) campaigns, and Parliament seems disinclined to resolve them.”