By Catherine Wilson

This landmark research examines the position performed via the rediscovery of the writings of the traditional atomists, Epicurus and Lucretius, within the articulation of the main philosophical platforms of the 17th century, and, extra widely, their impact at the evolution of normal technological know-how and ethical and political philosophy. the objective of sustained and trenchant philosophical feedback via Cicero, and of opprobrium by means of the Christian Fathers of the early Church, for its
unflinching dedication to the absence of divine supervision and the finitude of existence, the Epicurean philosophy surfaced back within the interval of the medical Revolution, while it displaced scholastic Aristotelianism. either sleek social agreement thought and utilitarianism in ethics have been grounded in its tenets.
Catherine Wilson exhibits how the unique Epicurean picture of the usual and social worlds took carry in philosophy, and the way it's an said, and sometimes unacknowledged presence within the writings of Descartes, Gassendi, Hobbes, Boyle, Locke, Leibniz, Berkeley. With chapters dedicated to Epicurean physics and cosmology, the corpuscularian or "mechanical" philosophy, the query of the mortality of the soul, the grounds of political authority, the contested nature of the experimental philosophy,
sensuality, interest, and the function of enjoyment and application in ethics, the writer makes a persuasive case for the importance of materialism in seventeenth-century philosophy with out underestimating the intensity and value of the competition to it, and for its persevered value in the
contemporary international. Lucretius's nice poem, at the Nature of items, offers the body of reference for this deeply-researched inquiry into the origins of recent philosophy.
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