Maimonides and England

The subject of this paper, which deals with the influence of the writings of Moses Maimonides on English civilization during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, is so vast and the time at my disposal so short that I cannot attempt more than a general outline of the problems involved. A brief summary of the principles of Maimonides5 philosophy seems, however, to be indispensable for the purpose.

It is generally assumed that Maimonides5 philosophy is the result of an endeavour to harmonize the rationalistic doctrines of Aristotle with the religious ideas and moral teachings of the Bible. In fact, Maimonides rejects both the main metaphysical preconceptions of Aristotle and the theory of emanation which Arabic philosophers had evolved by combining astronomy with Neoplatonic and Aristotelian meta? physics ; he further disposes effectively of the claim that the concepts employed in Aristotelian physics are an adequate means of explaining the universe as

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