The Metaphysics of Henry More

  • Jasper Reid

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vii
  2. Jasper Reid
    Pages 1-34
  3. Jasper Reid
    Pages 35-73
  4. Jasper Reid
    Pages 75-101
  5. Jasper Reid
    Pages 103-139
  6. Jasper Reid
    Pages 141-184
  7. Jasper Reid
    Pages 185-236
  8. Jasper Reid
    Pages 237-278
  9. Jasper Reid
    Pages 279-311
  10. Jasper Reid
    Pages 313-348
  11. Jasper Reid
    Pages 349-381
  12. Jasper Reid
    Pages 383-401
  13. Back Matter
    Pages 403-412

About this book


From his correspondence with Descartes in the 1640s to his discussions with Isaac Newton in the 1680s, Henry More (1614–1687) was a central figure in seventeenth-century philosophy. Notwithstanding his occasional portrayal as a rather eccentric anachronism, excessively wedded to the Neoplatonism of the past, the fact is that he was involved in some of the most cutting-edge debates of the day, and engaged with most of the giants of that great age of geniuses. The present work takes More seriously as a subtle and systematic early-modern metaphysician. It explores his ideas in relation to those of his contemporaries, both friends and foes, while also taking care not to neglect his Neoplatonic heritage; but it also reveals just how original a thinker he was in his own right. Topics include More’s evolving conception of Hyle (or first matter); his account of the physical world, a world of atoms without void; his theory of immaterial extension, and the divine real space that underlay this world; his attitude to mechanical explanations in physics, and his preferred theory of the Spirit of Nature; his developing attitude to the notion of living matter; and his views on the life of the human soul, before as well as after its union with the human body.


Atomist plenum Cambridge Platonism Cambridge Platonists Early English reception of Descartes Early modern atomism Early modern neoplatonism Enchiridion metaphysicum Henry More Holenmerianism Immaterial extension Incorporeal extension Indiscerpibility Newtonian absolute space Nullibism Pre-existence of the soul Seventeenth-century metaphysics Spissitude immortality of the soul

Authors and affiliations

  • Jasper Reid
    • 1
  1. 1., PhilosophyKing's College LondonLondonUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information