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Philosophy of History
(1,605 words)

[German Version]

The term philosophy of history was coined by Voltaire, who published in 1765 his Philosophie de l’histoire (ET: The Philosophy of History, 1766). He was determined to present an objective, phenomenal study of history, based on natural human reason, instead of the hitherto dominant theology of history (History, Theology of), for which J.-B. Bossuet had created a monumental apotheosis in his Discours sur l’histoire universelle (1681; ET: Discourse on Universal History, 1976), conceived to reflect God’s guidance of history. Bossuet was the foil agains…

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Gander, Hans-Helmuth, “Philosophy of History”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 23 February 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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