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Hobbes on Politics and Religion$
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Laurens van Apeldoorn and Robin Douglass

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198803409

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198803409.001.0001

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Devil in the Details

Devil in the Details

Hobbes’s Use and Abuse of Scripture

Chapter:
(p.135) 8 Devil in the Details
Source:
Hobbes on Politics and Religion
Author(s):

Paul B. Davis

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198803409.003.0009

This chapter documents where and how Hobbes’s scriptural quotations diverged from contemporary translations of the Bible. While Hobbes usually relied on these translations, it reveals that on some points—especially regarding supernatural phenomena—he took considerable liberties to reconcile the Bible with the key tenets of his own political philosophy. The chapter also shows that attending to Hobbes’s translations both helps to locate some of the key sources for his biblical exegesis, such as work by the biblical scholar Joseph Mede, and provides further evidence confirming that a Latin text of Leviathan did not predate the English version. Hobbes’s alterations were of great interest to contemporary critics like Edward Hyde and Alexander Ross; this chapter shows why they should be of interest to modern critics as well.

Keywords:   Thomas Hobbes, Joseph Mede, scripture, biblical exegesis, Edward Hyde, Alexander Ross

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