Scotland and the European Republic of Letters around 1700

Thomas Ahnert, Martha McGill

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This chapter focuses on the extent to which the discussion of philosophical subjects at Scottish universities drew on and was informed by the writings of thinkers in other parts of Europe around 1700. In spite of the practical difficulties in obtaining publications from abroad, Scots around 1700 had many, if not most, of the main recent texts available to them. Regents at the Scottish universities discussed contemporary European (including English) authors and used their writings. The references to heterodox or ‘radical’ authors such as Spinoza or Hobbes were generally dismissive, and sometimes bordered on caricature, but Scots did incorporate other up-to-date material into their lectures and disputations. On the whole, the intellectual concerns of Scots at this time were not radically dissimilar from those of the learned in many other parts of Europe.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationScottish Philosophy in the Seventeenth Century
EditorsAlexander Broadie
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191822667
ISBN (Print)9780198769842
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2020

Publication series

NameA History of Scottish Philosophy
PublisherOxford University Press

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • philosophy curriculum
  • intellectual networks
  • European Republic of Letters
  • book trade
  • Dutch Republic
  • scholasticism
  • Cartesianism
  • Newtonianism
  • materialist philosophy


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