Philosophical Letters

Overview


Best known for his philosophical novel Candide, Voltaire ranked among the leading intellectuals of the Enlightenment period. His two-and-a-half-year sojourn in England left a profound impression, and these letters — written as though explaining English society to a French friend — focus on the country's religion and politics, with commentaries on Quakers, the Church of England, Presbyterians, Anti-Trinitarians, Parliament, the government, and commerce. They also include essays on Locke, Descartes, and Newton. ...
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Philosophical Letters: (Letters Concerning the English Nation)

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Overview


Best known for his philosophical novel Candide, Voltaire ranked among the leading intellectuals of the Enlightenment period. His two-and-a-half-year sojourn in England left a profound impression, and these letters — written as though explaining English society to a French friend — focus on the country's religion and politics, with commentaries on Quakers, the Church of England, Presbyterians, Anti-Trinitarians, Parliament, the government, and commerce. They also include essays on Locke, Descartes, and Newton. Voltaire was much influenced by English tolerance, and his observations on the subject sounded a revolutionary note among European readers that resonated for long afterward. First published in English in 1733, Philosophical Letters was condemned by the French government as "likely to inspire a license of thought most dangerous to religion and civil order." It remains a landmark of the Age of Reason.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780486426730
  • Publisher: Dover Publications
  • Publication date: 10/20/2011
  • Series: Thrift Edition Series
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 1,223,716
  • Product dimensions: 5.46 (w) x 8.58 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Table of Contents

Translator's Introduction vii
Selected Bibliography xiii
Note on the Text xv
I. On the Quakers 3
II. On the Quakers 8
III. On the Quakers 11
IV. On the Quakers 16
V. On the Church of England 22
VI. On the Presbyterians 25
VII. On the Socinians, or Arians, or Anti-Trinitarians 27
VIII. On the Parliament 30
IX. On the Government 34
X. On Commerce 39
XI. On Inoculation with Smallpox 41
XII. On Chancellor Bacon 46
XIII. On Mr. Locke 52
XIV. On Descartes and Newton 60
XV. On the System of Attraction 66
XVI. On Newton's Optics 75
XVII. On Infinity and on Chronology 79
XVIII. On Tragedy 85
XIX. On Comedy 90
XX. On Persons of Rank Who Cultivate Learning 95
XXI. On the Earl of Rochester and Mr. Waller 99
XXII. On Mr. Pope and Some Other Famous Poets 105
XXIII. On the Consideration Owed to Men of Letters 110
XXIV. On Academies 114
XXV. On the Pensees of M. Pascal 119
Appendix 147
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