Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(2,231 words)

1. Definition

The term ‘genius’, a key aesthetic category in the 18th century, has a long prior history that has yet to be adequately researched. Early modern poetics already moved away from strict adherence to the postulate of “imitation” (Latin imitatio; cf. Mimesis), also valuing original artistic creativity in its complementary demand for a creative “contest” with models of classical Antiquity (Latin aemulatio). The creative disp…

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Aurnhammer, Achim, “Genius”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 11 December 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_019888>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180208

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