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Honnête homme, honnête femme

(1,229 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. DefinitionThe term  honnête homme, first attested in 1538, is defined in the  Dictionarium latinogallicum of Robert Estienne as a “cultured courtly gentleman without presumption.” Since the early 17th century, it expressed the quintessence of courtly urbanity, the social model of the new court society of the age of Louis XIV. Unlike related French words such as  courtisan, homme de qualité, homme de bien, homme galant, and  gentilhomme, the  honnête homme (and the  honnête femme) was not socially predef…
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,434 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. A social idealManners were understood from the late 15th century as the sum of all behaviors that expressed politeness or courtesy (German Höflichkeit; Italian  cortesia, gentilezza; Spanish  cortesía; French  politesse, civilité, towards ladies also  courtoisie and  galanterie
Date: 2019-10-14


(3,188 words)

Author(s): Klippel, Diethelm | Walther, Gerrit | Klein, Birgit E.
1. General 1.1. OverviewThe term emancipation, which exists in all European languages, comes from Roman private law (Latin emancipatio), and originally meant release from the patria potestas (Parental rights and obligations). The concept had an extraordinary career from the dawn of the early modern period, though the original family law sense survived in jurisdiction long into the 19th century in Europe. While outside legal usage it i…
Date: 2019-10-14


(2,106 words)

Author(s): Blanke, Horst Walter | Walther, Gerrit
1. General 1.1. Terminology Most 19th- and 20th-century lexicons define a historian as a person who studies and writes about history; Grimm calls a Historiker (historian) a  Geschichtsforscher  und -schreiber (researcher and writer of history) [1] (see Historiography). There have been writers dealing with historical events since the beginning of literacy in Europe (Homer and Moses, or Herodotus, Thucydides, Livy, Polybius, and Tacitus). Only since the late Enlightenment, however, have there been professional historians. In his introduction to a translation of a…
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,186 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. ModelThe model of the four temperaments (from the Latin temperamentum, “proper measure”) remained in the early modern period, as it had been throughout classical antiquity and the Middle Ages, the norm for describing the character of individuals. The classification of four basic types (sanguine, melancholic, choleric, phlegmatic), completed in ancient times by Aristotle and Galen, provided the categories whose specific combinations explained the individual subject. Although – in the words of the Baron von Knigge, writing in 1788 – “for the most part, one of the f…
Date: 2022-11-07


(14,627 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit | Steinle, Friedrich | Beutel, Albrecht | Tschopp, Silvia Serena | Kanz, Roland | Et al.
1. Concept and definition Enlightenment in English is first attested from 1865 as a translation of the German  Aufklärung, which was first recorded in 1691. With their European cognates  lumières (French), illuminismo (Italian), and  ilustración (Spanish), they denote the most influential European educational and cultural movement of the 18th century, as well as its overriding goals: to subject all authorities, traditions, and hierarchies to the critical measure of a newly defined reason, and to abolish them if they ran counter…
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,502 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. ConceptAt the beginning of the early modern period, the Greek term charaktḗr (‘stamp’ or ‘engraving’), which Patristic writers includingAugustine had been the first to introduce into literary Latin, had an abstract and technical meaning. As in the writings of Aristotle’s pupil Theophrastus, it denoted both a permanent mark, distinguishing feature, or symbol, and a prevailing moral quality …
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,443 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. Concept and definitionThe plural term “memoirs” adopted into all European cultural languages and derived from the Latin memoria and the French  mémoire (“memory,” “remembrance”) meant, like its Latin counterparts commentarii (“[legal] record”) and  adversaria (“[journal recording] what is before one's eyes”), a juristic, official, or diplomatic record describing the prior history and problem context of a conflict requiring negotiation. Academies also often titled their publication as “memoirs.” In its most significant connot…
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,806 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit | Schliesser, Eric
1. Concept and meaningA method - a planned, standardized procedure for obtaining and verifying information and arranging it into a knowledge system, is an indispensable element of learned activity in all knowledge societies. The development of method in early modern Europe was characterized by its gradual emancipation from knowledge content. To begin with, method served as a procedure of teaching and demonstrating (Proof) theories, dogmas, traditions, and authorities that arose and endured independent of it, but thro…
Date: 2019-10-14

Enlightenment history

(1,631 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. DefinitionThe modern term is a collective designation for all works of history, historiography, and philosophy of history (History, philosophy of) published during the Enlightenment by authors subscribing to Enlightenment ideas and values.Gerrit Walther2. Questions and modelsThe Enlightenment shaped a fundamentally new conception of history. It broke with the Christian-theological view of history that had only recently reached its virtuoso apogee in Jacques Bénigne Bossuet’s Discours sur l’Hist…
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,567 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit | Christophersen, Alf
1. Overview 1.1. ConceptSince the late 18th century, the term  subjectivity (from Latin subiectum, “something placed underneath”; as a term of classical rhetoric: “basis [of a statement]”) has been understood as a philosophical mindset or attitude that views the world and reality not as something objectively given but as an idea or a creation of the subject perceiving it. From the outset, this emphasis on perception distinguished subjectivity from similar categories like character (the nature and moral qual…
Date: 2022-08-17


(7,073 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. Terminology During the early modern period, the languages of the civilized European world had a wide range of words to express the process of formation designed to transform individuals through education and their own efforts into persons conformed as well as possible to the norms defined by society. From the beginning, the vernacular derivatives of Latin educatio (“education,” German Erziehung), eruditio (“literacy,” German Belesenheit), and scientia (“knowledge," German Wissen) were dominant. The English and French terms formation—a combination of learning and outw…
Date: 2019-10-14

Late Humanism

(2,030 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. Definition The term Late Humanism is frequently applied to…
Date: 2019-10-14


(3,917 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit | Müller-Wille, Staffan | Kalusok, Michaela
1. ConceptThe prototype and model for all early modern museums was the Museíon, which the Egyptian king Ptolemy I had established around 320 BCE in the same part of the palace at Alexandria that also housed his world-famous library. It was an academy where scholars, who were paid a salary by the government, met for research, discussion, and banqueting. Only in the early modern period did “museum” acquire a more topographical and material meaning. In the 18th century, it was defined as “a place where things are kept that have direct reference to the arts and Muses” …
Date: 2020-04-06


(2,195 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. Concept and overviewIn most of the cultural languages of Europe, dissimulation at the beginning of the early modern period was denoted using the Latin terms simulatio and  dissimulatio that had been current since Cicero and that Tacitus, in particular, made his own. While the latter meant concealing one's own views and intentions, the former meant simulating ideas and plans other than those one really had in mind. Although dissimulation, as a form of lying (Lie), was strictly frowned upon - telling the truth was a …
Date: 2019-10-14

Uomo universale

(651 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
Date: 2022-11-07


(1,550 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. Theology and languageModern Egyptology was born on September 27, 1822, when Jean-François Champollion (1790-1832) presented his Lettre à M. Dacier to the Paris Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres. The document provided the basis for the decipherment of the Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs [8]; [9]. European scholars had begun researching the writing, language, and culture of Ancient Egypt from the 15th century, but they had done so mostly from the perspective of the theological problem of the relationship between Egyptian and…
Date: 2019-10-14


(1,867 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit | Kanz, Roland
1. DefinitionOf the five senses, the one associated with the mouth (taste; Latin  gustus or  sapor, Italian and Spanish  gusto, French  goût, German  Geschmack) became by the 17th century, at the latest, a universal term for the ability to perceive beauty, to prize it, to assess it, and in some cases to (re)produce it. In this sense, it also stood for the ability to do or embody what is appropriate (Latin  aptum; Decorum) and worthy in any situation.Gerrit Walther2. Tastemakers, functions, placesThe concepts and guiding ideals of taste were supplied by classical rhetoric, …
Date: 2022-11-07


(3,246 words)

Author(s): Eckart, Wolfgang Uwe | Greve, Ylva | Klippel, Diethelm | Walther, Gerrit
1. Introduction and general history 1.1. Definition and early terminological historyThe word “psychology” comes from the Greek ( psychḗ, or…
Date: 2021-03-15


(2,488 words)

Author(s): Dücker, Burckhard | Walther, Gerrit
1. Term The Greek word kanṓn (orig. craftsman’s ‘measure’, ‘standard’) had a range of meanings in Antiquity, all of which referred to a generally valid norm. In art, for instance, it denoted from around the time of Polyclitus (5th century BCE) the proportion theory of the human body. In music, beginning with the Pythagoreans (5th century BCE) it was a twelve-part measuring instrument for determining the intervals. In epistemology from Democritus (4th century BCE) it was the sense of truth and the faculty of criticism. In r…
Date: 2019-10-14
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