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Making Mathematical CultureUniversity and Print in the Circle of Lefèvre d'Étaples$
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Richard Oosterhoff

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198823520

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198823520.001.0001

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The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy

The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy

(p.180) 6 The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy
Making Mathematical Culture

Richard Oosterhoff

Oxford University Press

As one of the great Renaissance champions of Aristotle, Lefèvre might be expected to be wary of mathematics in natural philosophy. As humanists, Lefèvre and his circle might be expected to avoid subjects such as the latitude of forms. Yet in certain dialogues Lefèvre offered an explicit rehabilitation of scholastic mathematical physics. This text assumed a metaphysics of making which allowed Lefèvre, Bovelles, and others to think of mathematical objects as relating to physical causes. They provide an account of knowing as making that responded to fifteenth-century concern about the balance of the active and the contemplative lives. These central moves in the making of a mathematical physics are the subject of this chapter.

Keywords:   Natural causes, natural philosophy, mathematical physics, friendship, making

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