chapter  15
13 Pages

Leibniz’s Reputation: The Fontenelle Tradition


There is a temptation to think of philosophical systems as Platonic ideals, which exist in a realm outside of history. But be that as it may, philosophers exist at a time and in a place and are read and commented on by other creatures who are equally time bound. In this chapter, I would like to capture something of the peculiarity of how Leibniz was understood and regarded by his contemporaries and by those who lived in the century that followed.