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date: 18 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses the role of medicine in Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz’s philosophy. More specifically, it examines Leibniz’s intellectual investment in the study and advancement of medicine as a reflection of his interest in the so-called medical eudaimonism. The chapter first considers Leibniz’s view of medicine as the second most important human art after philosophical theology and the sources and development of his medical thought. It then looks at his commitment to mechanical teleology and support of medical empiricism; medicine as an important foundation of his theory of knowledge and philosophy of science; his beliefs concerning the use of bodily secretions to diagnose a patient’s medical condition; his thoughts on animal experimentation and vivisection; and his study of pharmaceutics. The chapter concludes by discussing Leibniz’s proposals for the organization of medicine, including his ideas on public health.

Keywords: Leibniz, medicine, philosophy, medical eudaimonism, teleology, empiricism, bodily secretions, experimentation, pharmaceutics, public health

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