An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, by John Locke

While in exile Locke finished An Essay Concerning HumanUnderstanding and published a fifty page advanced notice of it inFrench. (This was to provide the intellectual world on the continentwith most of their information about the Essay until PierreCoste's French translation appeared.) He also wrote and published hisEpistola de Tolerentia in Latin. Richard Ashcraft inhis Revolutionary Politics and Locke's Two Treatises ofGovernment suggests that while in Holland Locke was not onlyfinishing An Essay Concerning Human Understanding and nursinghis health, he was closely associated with the English revolutionariesin exile. The English government was much concerned with thisgroup. They tried to get a number of them, including Locke, extraditedto England. Locke's studentship at Oxford was taken away from him. Inthe meanwhile, the English intelligence service infiltrated the rebelgroup in Holland and effectively thwarted their efforts — atleast for a while. While Locke was living in exile in Holland, CharlesII died on Feb. 6, 1685 and was succeeded by his brother — whobecame James II of England. Soon after this the rebels in Holland senta force of soldiers under the Duke of Monmouth to England to try tooverthrow James II. Because of the excellent work of the Stuart spies,the government knew where the force was going to land before thetroops on the ships did. The revolt was crushed, Monmouth captured andexecuted (Ashcraft, 1986). For a meticulous, if cautious review, ofthe evidence concerning Locke's involvement with the English rebels inexile see Roger Woolhouse's Locke: A Biography (2007).

An Essay concerning Human Understanding.

An Essay Concerning Human Understanding

An Essay Concerning Human Understanding - Gutenberg

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An Essay Concerning Human Understanding Quotes by John Locke

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“An essay concerning human understanding.” // IN:  / edited by A.J.  and Raymond . – London : Routledge & K. Paul, 1952. – p. 31-160.
“An essay concerning human understanding” / by John Locke. // IN:  / edited by S.E. , Jr. – Garden City, N.Y. : Doubleday, 1946. – p. 363-475.

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In An Essay concerning Human Understanding, John Locke sets out his theory of knowledge and how we acquire it. Eschewing doctrines of innate principles and ideas, Locke shows how all our ideas, even the most abstract and complex, are grounded in human experience and attained by sensation of external things or reflection upon our own mental activities. A thorough examination of the communication of ideas through language and the conventions of taking words as signs of ideas paves the way for his penetrating critique of the limitations of ideas and the extent of our knowledge of ourselves, the world, God, and morals.

John Locke, The Works of John Locke, vol. 1 (An Essay concerning Human Understanding Part 1) [1689]

An Essay Concerning Human Understanding - Google Books

Locke's Some Thoughts Concerning Education andhis Conduct of the Understanding form a nice bridgebetween An Essay Concerning Human Understanding and hispolitical works. Nathan Tarcov and Ruth Grant write in theintroduction to their edition of these works: “The idea ofliberty, so crucial to all of Locke's writings on politics andeducation, is traced in the Essay to reflection on the power of themind over one's own actions, especially the power to suspend actionsin the pursuit of the satisfaction of one's own desires until after afull consideration of their objects (II. xxi 47, 51–52). TheEssay thus shows how the independence of mind pursued inthe Conduct is possible.”(Grant and Tarcov (1996)xvi).

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An essay concerning human understanding

In An Essay concerning Human Understanding, John Locke sets out his theory of knowledge and how we acquire it. Eschewing doctrines of innate principles and ideas, Locke shows how all our ideas, even the most abstract and complex, are grounded in human experience and attained by sensation of external things or reflection upon our own mental activities. A thorough…