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CHRISTIAN WOLFF (1679–1754)
 
cover for Wolff's Ontology
FIRST PHILOSOPHY, OR ONTOLOGY
Treated According to the Scientific Method,
Containing the Principles of All Human Cognition
(1730)
PART 1: §§1–78
Translated, annotated, and with an introduction
by KLAUS OTTMANN
Paperback original, 120 pages, $22
ISBN: 978-0-88214-968-4
Kindle e-book edition, $9.99
ISBN: 978-0-88214-969-1

The first English translation of Part 1 of Christian Wolff’s Philosophia prima, sive Ontologia (1730). Considered one of the seminal thinkers of the German Enlightenment—a group that included Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, Moses Mendelssohn, Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, and Immanuel Kant—Wolff exerted his influence on the German Enlightenment through his development of a rationalist system of knowledge in which all the propositions of science are demonstrated from first principles. By grounding metaphysics in mathematics, detangling it from the Scholastics’ focus on the supernatural (that which is beyond the physical), and making ontology the first philosophy—elevating it above metaphysics as a science that subsumes metaphysics (i.e., natural theology) as well as psychology and cosmology—he took the first significant steps towards a Philosophy of Enlightenment.
 
cover for Wolff's Ontology