- List of Abbreviations
- Notes on Contributors
- Becoming a Philosopher in Seventeenth-Century Britain
- Francis Bacon
- Robert Boyle
- Isaac Newton
- The Reception of Cartesianism
- Observation and Mathematics
- The Status of Theory and Hypotheses
- Substance and Essence
- The Nature of Body
- The Theory of Material Qualities
- Theories of Generation and Form
- Soul and Body
- John Locke on the Understanding
- Probable Opinion
- Logic and Demonstrative Knowledge
- Will and Motivation
- Hedonism and Virtue
- Passions and Affections
- Natural Law and Natural Rights
- Women, Freedom, and Equality
- Thomas Hobbes’ <i>Leviathan</i>
- John Locke’s <i>Two Treatises of Government</i>
- The Origin and Development of Property: Conventionalism, Unilateralism, and Colonialism
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter, which examines what it meant to become a philosopher and work in the field of philosophy in Great Britain during the seventeenth century, analyzes the factors that influenced people to become philosophers and describes the circumstances in which they studied philosophy. It identifies a pattern by which the schools provided a preliminary framework for becoming a philosopher that later served as a creative foil for the pursuit of a philosophical career beyond the schools. The chapter also highlights the key developments during this period, which include the increasing prominence of (mono)theistic philosophical apologetics and the emergence of experimental natural philosophy.
Richard Serjeantson teaches the history of philosophy and the sciences at Trinity College, Cambridge. He has published on a variety of seventeenth-century topics and authors, including Francis Bacon, Edward Herbert, Thomas Hobbes, and John Locke, and is currently working on a newly discovered early draft of René Descartes’ Regulae ad directionem ingenii.
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