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London for Awnsham and John Churchil 1700 - The fourth edition, with a large number of additions. With the engraved portrait frontispiece of John Locke. Folio, full contemporary paneled calf, expertly rebacked to correct period style with tall raised bands double-ruled in gilt and a brown morocco label gilt ruled and lettered. [39], 438, [index, errata] pp. A very handsome copy, crisp and in fine order inside and out, pastedown and free-fly renewed with proper handmade paper, the binding very attractive, sturdy and sound. A VERY EARLY PRINTING WITH THE PORTRAIT, AND A VERY HANDSOME COPY OF LOCKE’S GREAT ESSAY, the "first attempt on a great scale, and in the Baconian spirit, to estimate critically the certainty and the adequacy of human knowledge, when confronted with God and the universe" (EB). This was the last edition to be published in Locke’s lifetime. The fourth edition contains all of the additions of the previous three editions, including the portrait and the index. The principal additions include an epistle to the reader on Locke’s terminology and there are two wholly new chapters. The first on the association of ideas (book II, chapter XXXII) and the second being on enthusiasm (book IV, Chapter XIX). There are also numerous minor additions and corrections. Locke's ESSAY served as the most concrete manifestation of a new empiricist spirit, in contrast to the metaphysical philosophies of Descartes, Spinoza and Leibniz. Locke was inspired to write the ESSAY in 1671 after a philosophical discussion with friends in which he realized that no progress could be made before they had examined the mind's capacities and seen "what objects our understandings were, or were not, fitted to deal with" (from the "Epistle to the Reader"). "Other philosophers had reflected on and written about human knowledge. But Locke was the first philosopher to devote his main work to an inquiry into human understanding, its scope and its limits. And we can say that the prominent place occupied in modern philosophy by the theory of knowledge is in large measure due to him." (Copleston, A HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY). Locke's influence was widespread and was not strictly limited to pure philosophical inquiry. In America his emphasis on rational thought versus "enthusiasm" provided ammunition and philosophical grounding to opponents of the revivalist and itinerant preachers of the Great Awakening, and in the nineteenth century the "nature versus nurture" thesis was employed by Unitarians and other anti-Calvinist factions to argue that human nature was improvable through nurture and self-culture rather than corrupt beyond hope without conversion through a special act of divine grace. In England Locke had a strong influence on the literature of the Augustan Age, Sterne, Addison, and the members of the Scriblerus Club all acknowledging the currency of his ideas. "The art of education, political thought, theology and philosophy, especially in Britain, France, and America, long bore the stamp of the ESSAY, or of reaction against it" (Fraser, quoted in Grolier). Locke's ESSAY has passed through more editions than any classic in modern philosophical literature and remains a cornerstone in the history of human thought. [Attributes: Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Buddenbrooks, Inc. ABAA]
Last Found On: 2014-10-02           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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