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Enlightenment Philosophers and Their Works

Page history last edited by Robert W. Maloy 1 year, 2 months ago




The Enlightenment in European History


The Enlightenment, Principles of Democratic Government and Women's Political Participation


Main Ideas of Men and Women Enlightenment Thinkers



Chronological list of the Enlightenment's most notable philosophers and their works


  • 1651 Thomas Hobbes: Leviathan
  • 1690 John Locke: Two Treatises on Government
  • 1697 Mary Astell wrote Serious Proposal to the Ladies,
    • It proclaimed that women needed to be better educated
  • 1721 Montesquieu: Persian Letters.
  • 1733 Voltaire: Philosophic Letters to the English.
    • A criticism of the problems that beset France.
  • 1739-40 Hume: Treaties on Human Nature.
  • 1748 Montesquieu: The Spirit of Laws.
    • It argued that the condition of the country would determine its political and social structure.
  • 1751 Voltaire: The Age of Louis XIV.
  • 1751-65 Diderot: The Encyclopedia.




1754 The French and Indian War begins

  • 1758 Voltaire: Candide.
  • 1762 Rousseau: The Social Contract and Emile.
    • Both were influential. The Social Contract was a philosophical attempt to unite the liberty of the individual with the authority of the government.
  • 1763 Voltaire: Treaties on Toleration


1763 The French and Indian War ends; Great Britain wins decisively.

  • 1764 Beccaria: On Crimes and Punishment.
  • 1770 Holbach: Systems of Nature.
    • It expounded that the universe is made up of both matter and motion.
  • 1774 The Declaration of Independence is drafted.


1775 The American Revolution begins.

  • 1776 The Wealth of Nations is published by Adam Smith.


1783 The American Revolution ends.

  • 1784 Immanuel Kant: Critique of Pure Reason. Illustrates his analysis of the human mind and how it relates to nature.
  • 1787 Marquis de Condorcet publishes On The Admission to the Rights of Citizenship.
    • He states that women have the same natural rights as men.


1789 The French Revolution Begins

  • 1791 Olympe d'Gouges: Declaration of the Rights of Women
  • 1792 Mary Wollstonecraft: A Vindication of The Rights of Women
  • 1791 Thomas Paine: Rights of Man
  • 1794 Thomas Paine: The Age of Reason


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