Leibniz: An Intellectual Biography

By Maria Rosa Antognazza

Of all of the thinkers of the century of genius that inaugurated glossy philosophy, none lived an highbrow existence extra wealthy and sundry than Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716). expert as a jurist and hired as a counsellor, librarian, and historian, he made recognized contributions to common sense, arithmetic, physics, and metaphysics, but seen his personal aspirations as finally moral and theological, and married those theoretical issues with politics, international relations, and an both extensive variety of sensible reforms: juridical, monetary, administrative, technological, scientific, and ecclesiastical. Maria Rosa Antognazza's pioneering biography not just surveys the whole breadth and intensity of those theoretical pursuits and functional actions, it additionally weaves them jointly for the 1st time right into a unified portrait of this detailed philosopher and the area from which he got here. on the centre of the massive diversity of Leibniz's it seems that miscellaneous endeavours, Antognazza unearths a unmarried grasp venture lending cohesion to his terribly multifaceted life's paintings. in the course of the vicissitudes of his lengthy existence, Leibniz tenaciously pursued the dream of a scientific reform and development of the entire sciences, to be undertaken as a collaborative firm supported by way of an enlightened ruler; those theoretical targets have been in flip finally grounded in a pragmatic objective: the development of the human and thereby the social gathering of the distinction of God in His production. in addition to tracing the threads of continuity that sure those theoretical and sensible actions to this all-embracing plan, this illuminating examine additionally strains those threads again into the highbrow traditions of the Holy Roman Empire within which Leibniz lived and during the broader highbrow networks that associated him to consumers in nations as far away as Russia and to correspondents as some distance afield as China.

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Yet the following Leibniz’s considering took a nonetheless extra impressive twist: for conatus, strictly talking, is an motion right to the brain, as Leibniz wrote to Johann Friedrich on  could : “for simply because the activities of our bodies include movement, so the activities of minds encompass conatus”.  Leibniz thereby arrived on the lovely end that “every physique is a temporary brain, or one missing recollection [recordatio]. ” it truly is in basic terms a temporary brain simply because conatus is “in a moment”, that's, immediate, and physique “does now not continue its personal conatus and the opposite opposite one jointly for longer than a second.

D. Gruber, Commercii Epistolici Leibnitiani, advert omne genus eruditionis comparati, consistent with partes publicandi, tomus podromus. Pars . . Hanoverae et Gottingae: Apud Io. Wilhelm. Schmidium, , p. ) and Leibniz to Joh. Georg Graevius,  February  (A I, , ). The Ratio Corporis Juris Reconcinnandi is released in A VI, , N. . Leibniz to Thomas Hobbes,  July  (A II, , ). additionally in Thomas Hobbes, The Correspondence. Ed. by means of Noel Malcolm. Vol. II. Oxford: Clarendon Press, , pp. – (here p. ).

On Leibniz’s criminal illustration of the Boineburg kinfolk see for example his journey to D¨usseldorf in the summertime of  (Kritischer Katalog der Leibniz-Handschriften, , N. ). See Leibniz to Simon L¨offler,  April  (A I, , N. ) and Leibniz to Ernst von Hessen-Rheinfels, early ∗ (A I, , –). On Peter van Walenburch see Wiedeburg, Der Junge Leibniz, I. Teil: Mainz, pp. – (Darstellungsband). See Theodicy, “Preface” (GP VI, ). See Kritischer Katalog der Leibniz-Handschriften, , N.

In Fritz Hartmann and Matthias Kr¨uger, eds. , “Directiones advert rem Medicam pertinentes. Ein Manuskript G. W. Leibnizens aus den Jahren / u¨ ber die Medizin. ” Studia Leibnitiana , no.  (), p. . On Leibniz’s profitable way to the mathematical challenge of the quadrature of the circle see chap. I. . Leibniz to Konrad Burchard Vogther,  (Bodemann, Briefwechsel, p. ). Cf. additionally Grua,  and De eo quod Franciae curiosity (Consilium Aegyptiacum), January ∗ (A IV, , ). Nouveaux Essais, ebook IV, chap.

W. Philosophical Essays. Ed. and trans. through R. Ariew and D. Garber. Indianapolis: Hackett, . L: Leibniz, G. W. Philosophical Papers and Letters. Ed. and trans. by way of Leroy E. Loemker. nd ed. Dordrecht and Boston: Reidel, . NE: Leibniz, G. W. New Essays on Human knowing. Ed. and trans. via Peter Remnant and Jonathan Bennett. Cambridge: Cambridge collage Press, . Abbreviations xv WF: Leibniz’s New procedure and linked modern Texts. Ed. and trans. by way of R. S. Woolhouse and Richard Francks. Oxford: Clarendon Press, .

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