Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 23 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter focuses on the ethical theories of the early modern philosophers Thomas Hobbes, Justus Lipsius, Descartes, Spinoza, Benjamin Whichcote, Lord Shaftesbury, and Samuel Clarke. The discussions include aspects of Hobbes' moral philosophy that posed a challenge for many philosophers of the second half of the seventeenth century who were committed to philosophy as a form of self-help; Lipsius and Descartes' appropriation of ancient and Hellenistic moral philosophy in connection with changing ideas about control of the passions and the happiest and best life; and the maxim or epigram – a literary form used by moralists to counsel readers on how to best know and govern themselves.

Keywords: ethics, ethical theory, moral philosophers, Thomas Hobbes, Justus Lipsius, Descartes, Spinoza, Benjamin Whichcote, Lord Shaftesbury, Samuel Clarke

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.