Oude waarheden - Over de terugkeer van de klassieke oudheid in de verlichtingshistoriografie | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 127, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0040-7518
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1163


Since the publication of Peter Gay’s , scholarly interest in the classical presence in Enlightenment culture has waned. Over the past decade, however, this topic has returned to center stage. This review article discusses the ways in which recent research has contributed to the rediscovery of the classical past in the Enlightenment. It starts with an evaluation of the current reinterpretation of the , continues with an overview of recent scholarship on the various intellectual and institutional environments in which knowledge of the classical past was acquired and transmitted, and ends with a discussion of the crucial role of the ancient world in eighteenth-century historiography and political thought. In its conclusion the article draws attention to the many ways in which recent scholarship on the eighteenth-century reception of the classics has broken new ground. It also argues that the ‘classical turn in Enlightenment studies’ is still unjustifiably neglected in general interpretations of the Enlightenment.


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