EDITED BY J. H. MUIRHEAD, M.A.
E RDMA NN'S
HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY,
THE LIBRARY OF PHILOSOPHY.
THE LIBRARY OF PHILOSOPHY is in the first in-
stance a contribution to the History of Thought. While
much has been done in England in tracing the course of evo-
lution in nature, history, religion, and morality, comparatively
little has been done in tracing the development of thought
upon these and kindred subjects, and yet " the evolution of
opinion is part of the whole evolution."
This Library will deal mainly with Modern Philosophy,
partly because Ancient Philosophy has already had a fair share
of attention in this country through the labours of Grote,
Ferrier, and others, and more recently through translations
from Zeller ; partly because the Library does not profess to
give a complete history of thought.
By the co-operation of different writers in carrying out this
plan, it is hoped that a completeness and thoroughness of treat-
ment otherwise unattainable will be secured. It is believed,
also, that from writers mainly English and American fuller
consideration of English Philosophy than it has hitherto re-
ceived from the great German Histories of Philosophy may
be looked for. In the departments of Ethics, Economics, and
Politics, for instance, the contributions of English writers to
the common stock of theoretic discussion have been especially
valuable, and these subjects will accordingly have special pro-
minence in this undertaking.
Another feature in the plan of the Library is its arrange-
ment according to subjects rather than authors and dates,
enabling the writers to follow out and exhibit in a way
hitherto unattempted the results of the logical development of
particular lines of thought.
The historical portion of the Library is divided into two
sections, of which the first contains works upon the develop-
ment of particular schools of Philosophy, while the second ex-
hibits the history of theory in particular departments. There
will also be a third series, which will contain original and
independent contributions to Philosophy.
To these has been added, by way of Introduction to the
whole Library, an English translation of Erdmann's " History
of Philosophy," long since recognised in Germany as the best.
J. H. MUIRHEAD,
INTR OP UCT10N.
THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY. By DR. J. E. ERDMANN.
English Translation. Edited by PROFESSOR W. S. HOUGH, Minneapolis,
U.S.A., in 3 vols. Vol. i. and ii., each 155.; vol. iii., i2s.
LIST OF WORKS IN PREPARATION.
EARLY IDEALISM : Descartes to Leibnitz. By W. L. COURTNEY, M.A.,
Hon. LL.D. (St. Andrew's), Fellow of New College, Oxford.
GERMAN IDEALISTS : Kant to Hegel. By WM. WALLACE, M.A., WLyte Pro-
fessor of Moral Philosophy, University of Oxford.
MODERN REALISTS : Herbart, Lotze, &c. By ANDREW SETH, M.A., Pro-
fessor of Logic and English Literature, University of St. Andrew's.
SENSATIONALISTS : Locke to Mill. By W. S. HOUGH, Ph.M., Assistant
Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy, University of Minnesota,
THE ETHICS OF IDEALISM : Kant and Hegel. By HENRY JONES, M.A.,
Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy, University College, Bangor.
THE UTILITARIANS : Hume to Contemporary Writers. By W. R. SORLEY,
M. A., Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, and Professor ot Philosophy
in University College, Cardiff.
MORAL SENSE WRITERS : Shaftesbury to Martineau. By WILLIAM KNIGHT,
M.A., Professor of Moral Philosophy, St. Andrew's, N.B.
PRINCIPLE OF EVOLUTION IN ITS SCIENTIFIC AND PHILOSOPHICAL ASPECTS :
By JOHN WATSON, LL.D., Professor of Moral Philosophy, University
of Queen's College, Kingston, Canada.
THE HISTORY OF PSYCHOLOGY : Empirical and Rational. By ROBERT
ADAMSON, M.A., LL.D., Professor of Logic and Political Economy,
Owen's College, Manchester.
THE HISTORY OF POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY. By D. G. RITCHIE, M.A.,
Fellow of Jesus College, Oxford.
PHILOSOPHY AND ECONOMICS IN THEIR HISTORICAL RELATIONS. By J.
BONAR, M.A., LL.D.
THE HISTORY OF ^ESTHETICS. By BERNARD BOSANQUET, M.A., late Fellow
of University College, Oxford.
THE DEVELOPMENT OF RATIONAL THEOLOGY since Kant. By PROFESSOR
OTTO PFLEIDERER, of Berlin.
THE THEORY OF ETHICS. By EDWARD CAIRD, LL.D., Professor of Moral
Philosophy in the University of Glasgow.
EPISTEMOLOGY, OR THE THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE. By JAMES WARD,
D.Sc., LL.D., Fellow and Lecturer of Trinity College, Cambridge.
SWAN SONNENSCHEIN & Co., LONDON.
MACMILLAN & Co., NEW YORK.
HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY.
JOHANN EDUARD ERDMANN,
Professor of Philosophy in the University of Halle.
WILLISTON S. HOUGH, Pn.M.,
Assistant Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy in the University of Minnesota.
IN THREE VOLUMES. VOL. I.
ANCIENT AND MEDIAEVAL PHILOSOPHY.
SWAN SONNENSCHEIN & CO,
NEW YORK: MACMILLAN & CO.
BUTLER & TANNER,
THE SELWOOD PRINTING WORKS,
FKOME, AND LONDON.
THE present translation of Erdmann's Grundriss der Ge-
schichte der Philosophic has been made from the third and
last edition (Berlin, 1878), and executed by different hands,
as follows: The Ancient Philosophy (vol. i., pp. 1-222), by
Mr. Canning Schiller, B.A., late Exhibitioner of Baliol Col-
lege, Oxford ; The Patristic and Scholastic periods of Medi-
aeval Philosophy (vol. i., pp. 225-542), by the Rev. Arthur
C. McGiffert, Ph.D., of Lane Theological Seminary, Cincin-
nati ; The Period of Transition of Mediaeval Philosophy
(vol. i., pp. 543-723), by the Rev. Andrew Rutherford, M.A.,
of Dundee ; Modern Philosophy down to Kant (vol. ii.,
pp. 1-358), by Mr. George Macdonald, M.A., Master in Kel-
vinside Academy, Glasgow ; Modern Philosophy from Kant
to Hegel's death (vol. ii., pp. 359-707), by Mr. B. C. Burt,
M.A., formerly Fellow of Johji Hopkins' University, Balti-
more ; German Philosophy since Hegel's death (vol. iii.,
pp. 1-330), by the Rev. E. B. Spiers, M.A., of Glendevon,
The Editor has revised and is responsible for the entire
translation. But the rendering given to technical terms and
phrases, and the literary form of the whole, are more par-
ticularly his work, while the general phraseology is, in the
main, the unaltered work of the several translators. For the
translation of the Author's prefaces, the tables of contents and
the indexes, the Editor is alone responsible.
The attention of the reader is directed to what the Author
says in his prefaces which have been reprinted largely on
that account in explanation of two characteristics of his work
the relatively full treatment of the Middle Ages, and the
principle on which the bibliography has been given. Con-
cerning the latter, no attempt has been made to supplement
the Author's citations, in order to furnish something approach-
ing a systematic and complete bibliography. In some re-
spects, such a plan undoubtedly would have been desirable ;
but on the whole it seemed better to preserve the Author's
Vlll EDITORS PREFACE.
principle intact. As it stands, the literature given has a
special significance in reference to the exposition ; and it is
believed that all scholars will appreciate the fact that ex-
traneous additions have not been made. The Editor has
sought, however, to add information about all works cited as
in progress at the time of publication.
For obvious reasons of convenience, it has been thought
advisable to publish the very lengthy " Appendix " to vol. ii.
as a third volume. But in consideration of the fact that the
Author does not regard this part of his work as strictly con-
tinuous with the whole (as is explained in vol. ii., 330, 2),
the designation of "Appendix" has been retained, although
it now forms a separate volume. Dr. Erdmann's statements
about the history of the " Appendix " are of course to be
found in his prefaces to vol. ii. As this account of the
German philosophy of this century is the only one of note
extant, it is believed that it will be very welcome, notwith-
standing the Author's conviction that he has here supplied,
not a history, but only a contribution of material towards a
history. The Editor has undertaken to bring the necrology of
this part down to date, and to add the important works of
Lotze and Eduard von Hartmann that have appeared since
its publication. He has also supplied vol. iii. with a General
Index to the entire work.
In conclusion, the Editor desires to acknowledge his in-
debtedness to Professor J. H. Muirhead, M.A., of London,
for reading the sheets on Plato and Aristotle, and for correct-
ing the second proof of the entire third volume after page 96 ;
to Miss Arlisle M. Young, B.A., for assistance with portions
of the proof; and to many others whom he cannot mention
by name for information and assistance of the most varied
kind. As manifestly more appropriate to the English version
in three volumes, it has been decided to omit the designation
of "Outlines" from the title-page, although the work is re-
ferred to by that name in the Author's prefaces and in the
text, particularly of the third volume.
It should perhaps be added that Professor Erdmann gave
his ready assent to the translation of his work, and has kindly
communicated with the Editor on any points of unusual
W. S. H.
PREFACE TO VOLUME FIRST.
A FEW words respecting the origin of these Oittlines may
perhaps prevent them from receiving unwarranted criticisms
in addition to the numerous ones which will doubtless be
As it seems to me that Schleiermacher's remark, " A pro-
fessor who dictates sentences for his students to take down, in
reality claims for himself the privilege of ignoring the dis-
covery of printing," although likely to be forgotten by many,
is in danger of being discredited by no one, I have, where
it appeared desirable that my students should carry home
notes approved, not only by them but by me, had Outlines
printed for my lectures. But I thought such outlines unneces-
sary for the History of Philosophy. For a long time, in
answer to the oft-recurring question, what compend I pre-
ferred, I was able to recommend only Reinhold's, much as his
book leaves to be desired, since Tennemann's Manual was
out of print, Marbuch's seemed never likely to be completed,
and, finally, Ueberweg's learned work was not yet expected.
As I saw, however, that (what would have horrified the author
himself) Schwegler's Outline, and at length even pitiable imi-
tations of this cursory work, were the only sources from which
students, especially those preparing for examinations,
gained their knowledge, I attempted to sketch an Outline
which should give my students in concise form what I had
said in my lectures, and which at the same time should indi-
cate throughout where the materials for a more thorough study
were to be found. For Ancient Philosophy, inasmuch as we
possess the excellent works by Brandis and Zeller, and the
valued collection of citations by Ritter and Preller, this method
could be followed, as indeed it likewise could for the Gnostics
X PREFACE TO VOLUME FIRST.
and Church Fathers ; and hence the first fifteen sheets of
these Outlines contain only in very few parts more extended
expositions than I was accustomed to give in my lectures.
Had I been able to follow this plan to the end of the work,
the further designation " For Lectures " would have been
added to the title of " Outlines," and it would have appeared
in one volume instead of in two. That, however, this would
not be possible, was clear to me as soon as I came to the
treatment of the Schoolmen. However great my respect for
the labours of Tiedemann on the earlier Schoolmen, and of H.
Ritter and Haureau on the later ; however much, further, I am
indebted to monographs upon individual Schoolmen ; with
whatever appreciation and wonder, finally, I regard the gigantic
labour which Prantl undertook in behalf of the Mediaeval Logic,
I nevertheless found so much in the philosophers since the
ninth century, of which the existing expositions of their doc-
trines said nothing, and I saw myself so often obliged to
deviate from the traditional order and arrangement, that, espe-
cially as I desired in this book to keep myself free from all
controversy, I regarded greater fulness essential to the
establishment of my views. The introduction of citations
into the text of this part was furthermore obligatory, since we
do not possess a chrestomathy of Mediaeval Philosophy, such
as Ritter and Preller have prepared for the Ancient. The
limitation " For Lectures" had to be omitted ; for I am able
to compress only a very condensed summary of what the last
twenty-four sheets of this volume contain into the few weeks
which I can devote to the Middle Ages in my lectures. On ac-
count of the difference of character which thus falls to the first
and to the two other thirds of this volume, it has come about
(what may strike many readers as strange), that Mediaeval
Philosophy here occupies more than twice the space devoted
to the Ancient. Whoever would make out of this a charge of
disproportion, and refer me to many of the recent expositions
of the history of philosophy as models worthy of imitation,
should first consider that where Brandis, Zeller, and others, had
PREFACE TO VOLUME FIRST. XI
convinced me of the correctness of their views, I naturally
did not need to introduce also the reasons for them. On the
contrary, every assertion of mine which conflicted with the
customary view had to be substantiated. In the second place,
however, I wish to say, that I am not moved to imitate the
example of those who begin by asserting that the Middle
Ages brought forth no healthy thoughts, and then proceed
to give themselves no further trouble about them, except
perhaps to relate some curiosity or other from Tennemann,
in order after all to say something. It may be a very
antiquated notion, but I hold it to be better, not to speak
of the dogmatism of proceeding otherwise, first to study
the doctrines of these men, and then to ask whether they,
who among other things have given us our entire philo-
sophical terminology, are to be counted as nothing. I know
very well that what we have ourselves produced, and not
learned from another, is wont on that account to seem more
important to us than to others, perhaps indeed than it is ; and
so I will not dispute with my critic who would bring the charge,
perhaps, that because I myself was obliged to pore so long
over Raymond Lully, I now burden my reader with such a
lengthy description of his famous Art. But I shall be ready
to declare this exhaustiveness to be wholly useless only when
the critic tells me that he (more fortunate than I) has been
able easily to gather from the previous expositions of Lully's
doctrines how it happened that Lully's disciples at one time
nearly equalled in number the followers of Thomas Aquinas,
that Giordano Bruno became enthusiastic over him, that
Leibnitz had such a high opinion of him and got so much
from him, etc. What I mean to say, is this : To the reproach
of disproportion, I answer by way of apology, that where I
only said what was to be found elsewhere, I could be brief ;
but where I differed from others, I was obliged to be
J. E. ERDMANN.
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION.
INASMUCH as the Preface to the first edition fixes the point of
view from which I desire that this work should be judged
and it is on that account that I have had it reprinted it only
remains here to speak of the points wherein this second
edition differs from the first. With the single exception that
the earlier exposition of Weigel's doctrines was exchanged
for quite another (partly because I took into consideration
Sebastian Franck, omitted before, but also for other reasons),
I have altered nothing, but only made additions. A some-
what larger size nevertheless made it possible to meet the
wish of the publishers not to increase the number of sheets.
I was brought to make most of these additions by various
reviews, of which my book has received a gratifying num-
ber, among them undeservedly laudatory ones. Most of my
critics will find that I have followed their suggestions. Where
that is not the case, let them not at once suppose that their
suggestions passed unheeded. When, however, the grounds
given in my book for separating Anaxagoras from the earlier
philosophers are only met with the question whether this is
really necessary, when my separation of Neo-Platonism from
ancient philosophy, supported by reasons, is treated as an un-
heard-of innovation, although Marbuch in his Text-book, and
Brandis in his Lectures, as I know from his own lips, have
made precisely the same division, when, finally, my pointing
out that the doctrines of Thomas Aquinas and those of Duns
Scotus form different phases of scholasticism, meets only with
the peremptory assertion that both stand upon the same level
(to be sure, with the immediately added declaration that Duns
is related to Thomas as Kant is to Leibnitz), I am only
able, inasmuch as once for all I will not enter into contro-
versy, to pass over such unsubstantiated, or self-destroying
criticisms in silence. Other suggestions I should perhaps
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION. xiii
have followed, had not those who gave them made it them-
selves impossible. Thus, an anonymous critic in the Allg.
Augsb. Zeit., whom one cannot otherwise charge with not
being perfectly explicit, has omitted to indicate the passages
where my book seeks to force applause by " exits from the
stage," and thus deprived me of the opportunity of proving to
him by expunging the same, that a ranting actor is at least
as offensive to me as to him.
It was not through criticisms that the alteration was occa-
sioned by which the second edition contains a considerable
amount of bibliography wanting in the first. This has not
been added in order to make my work into a serviceable re-
ference book ; even w r ere I prepared to write such a work, I
should certainly have forborne doing so now that we possess
such a good one in Ueberweg's Outlines. But what I had
declared in the Preface to the first edition as my purpose : at
every point to indicate where advice and instruction for a pro-
founder acquaintance with any philosopher was to be found,
was not adequately executed, so long as the titles of books
were unmentioned from which I myself had gathered infor-
mation, and which I thus knew from experience to contain it.
The list of these has been completed, and in addition those
books are indicated which I have read with profit since the
appearance of the first edition. The limitation solely to such
books as have been of value to myself, rests upon a wholly
subjective principle, and must result in a great disproportion
in the literature given. But if I had abandoned this method,
my book would have lost its character, and therewith its chief,
perhaps only, worth.
My entire work, indeed, is based upon a principle which
on my behalf may be called a subjective one, and shows, just
as the bibliography it contains, no proportion whatever in its
several parts. Had my exposition of the history of philosophy
sought to be like the great panoramas which one surveys by
following round a circular gallery, and hence by constantly
changing the point of view, but which, precisely on that ac-
XIV PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION.
count, can be executed only by several artists working upon
them at the same time, I should have looked about me for
coadjutors, and should have followed the example shown by
famous works of the day in pathology and therapeutics. This,
however, since I belong to the old school, I would not do, but
adopted as my model, not the painter of a panorama, but the
landscape painter, who delineates a scene as it appears from
a single, unalterably fixed point of view. Be it, now, that the
subject chosen was too large for me ; be it that I did not set
about the work soon enough ; be it that I did not apply myself
to it assiduously enough ; be it, finally, that all these causes
were combined together, no one knows better than I, that
what I have exhibited before the world is no painting on
which the artist has put the finishing touches. Let it there-
fore be regarded as a sketch in which only certain parts have
been executed in detail, namely those in which light and
colour effects never to recur were involved ; while other por-
tions have remained in sketch-like touches, since here the work
could be completed at leisure in the studio, after earlier studies
or the paintings of others. To drop the figure I have sought
before everything so to represent such systems as have been
treated in a step-motherly fashion by others, that a complete
view of them might be obtained, and perhaps the desire
aroused to know them better. And this because, in particu-
lar, my chief aim has after all always been to show that, not
chance and planlessness, but strict coherence, rules the history
of philosophy. For this end, however, philosophers not of
the first rank (just as for Zoology, the Amphibians, and other
intermediate species) are often almost more important than
the greatest. More than all else, however, this my aim de-
mands an unswerving adherence to a single point of view.
Since this cannot be occupied by two at the same time, I
might treat in my exposition only of what I myself had, if
not discovered, then at any rate seen. The gratifying con-
sciousness that I have not deviated from this singleness of
view will be felt, if I mistake not, by the attentive reader.
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION. XV
This open, I might almost say innocent, character would have
lost its physiognomy, or only been able to assume it again
artificially, if I had copied from others without verification,
even were it only in the matter of the iron inventory of the
customary bibliography. " If I mistake not," I said. With-
out this reservation I declare that now, but only now, I am
certain, that everything that I have made an author say, often
perhaps through a misinterpretation, the possibility of which
I of course do not deny, has nevertheless always been found
in him with my own eyes. In the case of many a remark, it
would now be very difficult for me to find among my excerpts
the passage where it stands ; in the case of others, it would be
impossible without indeed reading through the entire author,
as the exposition was made direct from the text without ex-
tracts. Now, however, I am in the fortunate position of one
who, when a promissory note is presented to him written in
his own hand, dated at his place of residence, without referring
to his diary to convince himself that he was not at home on
that day, refuses acceptance, because he never gives promissory
notes. It is unpleasant for any one when his critic exclaims :
" What thou assertest is said, is nowhere to be found," and
so, where I feared that, I have given citations ; and I am
accustomed, when this fate nevertheless befalls me, to search
first among my extracts, then in the books themselves from
which the extracts were taken, to see whether I cannot find a
quotation. If I do not find it, I relinquish the pleasure of
having convinced my critics. For myself, the matter no
longer disquiets me, which, did I otherwise, might give me
a sleepless night. This my certainty, resting upon subjective
ground, I cannot of course communicate to others ; and they
will, where they find assertions without citations, consult other
expositions. So much the better ; for, as I have no love for
the homines unius libri, I have not wished by my book to in-
crease their number.
J. E. ERDMANN.
PREFACE TO THE THIRD EDITION.
SINCE on the appearance of a new edition of a book it is
usually important for the reviewer, often also for the reader,
speedily to ascertain the deviations from the last edition, I give
the additions which have enriched or otherwise altered the
present work. I shall confine myself, of course, to the more
extended ones. For although the result of the reading of an
entire work has been frequently condensed into a few short sen-
tences, I nevertheless would not venture to call attention to these
cases, as I will not offer the reading public the history of my
" Outlines," instead of my " Outlines of History." Accord-
ingly, I note first that in 113, instead of the mere mention
of the name, Hermes Trismegistus has received a full exposi-